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Sat, 1 Sep 2007, 03:26 PM

Top Fuel Qualifying Notes, Session #2
By Dan Bennett

CLERMONT, Ind. - Notes from round 2 qualifying in Top Fuel at the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, 53rd annual Mac Tools U.S. Nationals listing lane, driver name, elapsed time/top speed this round, position in order following run, best prior elapsed time/speed, and position in order prior to run:
Right Lane: Cory McClenathan Runs 4.915/217.32, Now #17; No Prior Run

Weather conditions: air temperature 80 degrees, relative humidity 39 percent, barometer 29.25 inches, adjusted altitude 2,439 feet, track temperature 116 degrees.

This is going to be a tough round for the fuel classes as the track was throwing curves for the Pro Stock crew chiefs. The weather is staying steady but the track temp is still rising. There's a head wind of about 10 mph.

Cory shuts off early at 900 to 1000 feet, but I'm not sure why as I didn't see any signs of trouble.

Left Lane: Luigi Novelli Runs 12.780/92.73, Now #19; Best prior run: 5.947/150.73, Was #19
Right Lane: J.R. Todd Runs 6.668/125.89, Now #21; Best prior run: 28.000/0.00, Was #23

Bob Frye is telling the crowd that Novelli raced here in the past in a 73 car Top Fuel field.

During his interview, Cory says that his engine dropped a cylinder and he shut it off early to avoid damage.

Brandon Bernstein is on the bump spot at 4.823.

Luigi loses grip immediately. Todd got to about 330 before the same happened to him.

Left Lane: Bobby Lagana Jr. Runs 7.268/105.94, Now #18; Best prior run: 5.046/217.11, Was #18
Right Lane: T.J. Zizzo Runs 10.686/72.95, Now #23; Best prior run: 11.663/66.13, Was #23

Nothing doing on this pair either. Lagana made it another car length further than Zizzo.

Left Lane: Brandon Bernstein Runs 5.146/194.83, Now #16; Best prior run: 4.823/222.95, Was #16
Right Lane: Whit Bazemore Runs 8.094/86.99, Now #22; Best prior run: 8.501/80.79, Was #22

Another pair, same story.

Left Lane: Clay Millican Runs 5.164/198.55, Now #14; Best prior run: 4.647/327.74, Was #14
Right Lane: Joe Hartley Runs 11.607/84.17, Now #20; Best prior run: 6.501/130.18, Was #20

Hartley boils smoke at the green light, Millican got almost to the top end when his engine pitched the blower belt.

Left Lane: Doug Kalitta Runs 10.709/77.40, Now #12; Best prior run: 4.597/307.02, Was #12
Right Lane: Scotty Cannon Runs 6.173/142.67, Now #15; Best prior run: 4.657/318.09, Was #15

Kalitta first, then Cannon a bit further.

Left Lane: Alan Bradshaw Runs 12.542/71.98, Now #11; Best prior run: 4.594/314.61, Was #11
Right Lane: Bruce Litton Runs 5.193/197.19, Now #13; Best prior run: 4.604/325.61, Was #13

Bradshaw first, Litton at 660.

Left Lane: Doug Herbert Runs 4.727/303.30, Now #9; Best prior run: 4.565/315.19, Was #9
Right Lane: Hillary Will Runs 4.606/326.63, Now #10; Best prior run: 4.587/322.65, Was #10

Finally! Side by side!

Neither car stepped up but at least the finish line got the dust blown off it.

Left Lane: Doug Foley Runs 5.821/151.83, Now #7; Best prior run: 4.527/324.20, Was #7
Right Lane: Morgan Lucas Runs 5.609/161.94, Now #8; Best prior run: 4.554/327.74, Was #8

No smoke, but both cars lifted at about 900 feet.

Left Lane: Melanie Troxel Runs 10.859/78.55, Now #4; Best prior run: 4.520/329.18, Was #4
Right Lane: Rod Fuller Runs 4.650/316.23, Now #6; Best prior run: 4.524/325.85, Was #6

Melanie hiked the front wheels but the rear tires started to smoke when they landed. Fuller puts the big CAT through.

Left Lane: Bob Vandergriff Runs 4.596/326.63, Now #3; Best prior run: 4.513/329.91, Was #3
Right Lane: David Grubnic Runs 4.896/226.70, Now #5; Best prior run: 4.523/329.91, Was #5

Vandergriff lays down an exceptional pass in comparison to the rest of the class.

Grubnic looked good until the blower belt went flying at 900 feet. We hear there's also oil but then before the trucks roll the next pair is fired.

Left Lane: Tony Schumacher Runs 4.598/318.92, Now #1; Best prior run: 4.477/333.66, Was #1
Right Lane: Larry Dixon Runs 6.101/141.82, Now #2; Best prior run: 4.481/327.74, Was #2

Schumacher lofts the tires at the leave and sets them down gently. There's a bit of smoke as he crosses the finish line but apparently no oil.

Dixon smokes the tires.

3:22 p.m.

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink

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