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Sun, 2 Sep 2007, 10:28 AM

Top Alcohol Funny Car Qualifying Notes, Final Session
By David Gerard

CLERMONT, Ind. - Notes from final, round 4 qualifying in Top Alcohol Funny Car 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:
Left Lane: Steve Burck No Time, Now #25; Best prior run: 6.035/235.56, Was #25
Right Lane: Bobby Martin Runs 7.027/122.95, Now #27; Best prior run: 6.439/144.88, Was #27

9:30 a.m. Weather conditions: air temperature 75 degrees, relative humidity 48 percent, barometer 29.24 inches, adjusted altitude 2,142 feet, track temperature 84 degrees..Todd Veney is on the bump spot at 5.711.

Burck is shut off on the line. Martin gets the green, leaves hard, and then has the parachute come out before the 660 ft.

Left Lane: Jeff Burnett Runs 6.072/232.67, Now #24; Best prior run: 5.976/239.53, Was #24
Right Lane: Steve Franke Runs 6.408/222.91, Now #26; Best prior run: 6.282/234.21, Was #26

Burnett rides the wall most of the way down and slows. No joy for Franke either, as the clean up crew has started to work in his lane at the lights.

9:36 a.m.

Left Lane: Nancy Matter Runs 5.795/250.32, Now #20; Best prior run: 5.894/246.08, Was #23
Right Lane: Keeter Ray Runs 10.103/86.56, Now #22; Best prior run: 5.868/249.49, Was #21

9:46 a.m. ...and we are back. Ray has a ton of shake and gets the car very sideways at the 330 lights. Matter makes a nice improvement, but doesn't come close to qualifying.

9:49 a.m. Ray gets the clean up crew busy this time.

Left Lane: Chris Foster Runs 6.481/158.41, Now #23; Best prior run: 5.886/247.79, Was #23
Right Lane: John Bojec Runs 11.663/72.58, Now #19; Best prior run: 5.722/251.39, Was #19

9:53 a.m. ...and we are back. Two broken runs. Bojec just motored off the line and clicked it. Foster gets past mid-track before he lifts.

Left Lane: Wayne Butler Runs 6.018/242.93, Now #21; Best prior run: 5.853/244.21, Was #21
Right Lane: Mick Snyder Runs 5.674/251.67, Now #12; Best prior run: 5.713/250.09, Was #17

OK! Snyder gets the pass he was looking for. It was rumored that he was working with some different converters and whatever they did this time definitely works... Butler slows from his best run.

Left Lane: David Ray Runs 5.681/255.05, Now #16; Best prior run: 5.718/253.37, Was #18
Right Lane: Todd Veney Runs 5.689/252.85, Now #17; Best prior run: 5.711/253.14, Was #17

Jay Payne is on the bump spot at 5.691 and the #17 and #18 cars come to the line.Nice passes a pair and the quickest National Event field ever! Veney gets to the finish line first and qualifies, then 0.0406 seconds later Ray bumped him out.

Left Lane: Chuck Cheeseman Runs 5.644/254.28, Now #12; Best prior run: 5.678/255.34, Was #15
Right Lane: Jay Payne Runs 5.595/259.96, Now #3; Best prior run: 5.691/257.28, Was #18

Last chance for Payne to bump back into this tough field and he does so in style. He motors on up to the current #3 spot. Cheeseman's run didn't have the drama and he quietly moves up the ladder into the #12 position. Von Smith is on the bump spot at 5.676 and I think all of the slower cars have run.

Left Lane: Von Smith Runs 5.556/259.26, Now #3; Best prior run: 5.676/254.90, Was #16
Right Lane: Vern Moats Runs 5.973/246.44, Now #16; Best prior run: 5.675/255.34, Was #15

Smith didn't stay on the bump very long! He makes a clean pass to move Payne down a spot. Moats used a lot of track getting to the finish line, as the car moves out of the groove at the shift. This moves him down to the bump spot.

Left Lane: Mickey Ferro Runs 24.490/49.23, Now #11; Best prior run: 5.642/255.43, Was #11
Right Lane: Andy Bohl Runs 5.667/252.33, Now #14; Best prior run: 5.669/246.08, Was #14

Ferro sits in the light at the green and then motors on down the track. Bohl picks up a little on a clean pass and will stay #14.

Left Lane: Fred Hagen Runs 5.608/259.01, Now #5; Best prior run: 5.642/258.42, Was #10
Right Lane: Daniel Wilkerson Runs 5.614/256.84, Now #8; Best prior run: 5.644/256.99, Was #12

Alright! Two clean runs and both cars move into the top half of the field. Nice run for the rookie...

Left Lane: Steve Harker Runs 5.579/259.46, Now #4; Best prior run: 5.611/256.70, Was #7
Right Lane: Paul Gill Runs 5.655/254.04, Now #11; Best prior run: 5.641/253.37, Was #11

And the hits keep coming. Harker's great looking pass moves him up three spots to the current#4 spot. Gill runs a little faster, but will stay #11.

Left Lane: Ken Kraus Runs 5.637/251.63, Now #7; Best prior run: 5.609/252.61, Was #7
Right Lane: Marty Nothstein Runs 5.614/255.58, Now #9; Best prior run: 5.627/257.28, Was #9

Nothstein picks up the pace, but will not be able to take over the #8 spot in the top half of the field. Kraus has a clean pass, but slows a little.

Left Lane: Frank Manzo Runs 5.498/264.34, Now #1; Best prior run: 5.553/263.51, Was #2
Right Lane: Bob Tasca III Runs 5.585/259.51, Now #2; Best prior run: 5.547/261.47, Was #1

Well, Manzo saves the best for last! He runs the fifth MPH for TAFC to decisively take over the top spot in the tough field!! Awesome run... Tasca makes a clean pass , but will have to settle for #2.

10:20 a.m. Vern Moats is on the bump spot at 5.675.

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink

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