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Sun, 2 Sep 2007, 07:04 PM

Top Alcohol Funny Car Round 1 Eliminations
By David Gerard





CLERMONT, Ind. - Results of round 1 eliminations in Top Alcohol Funny Car at the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, 53rd annual Mac Tools U.S. Nationals:

 Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT-----ET---Speed-----Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT----ET---Speed
   32 Marty Nothstein                       347 Daniel Wilkerson             
E1   ****WINNER****  0.042  5.694 245.63                    -0.191 15.409  48.23
 Qualified:             #9  5.614 255.58                        #8  5.614 256.84
6:28 p.m. Weather conditions: air temperature 87 degrees, relative humidity 25 percent, barometer 29.18 inches, adjusted altitude 2,853 feet, track temperature 112 degrees.

Wilkerson makes a classic rookie mistake and goes -0.191 red after running a career best 5.614 in qualifying. Great pass for Nothstein into round two.


 Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT-----ET---Speed-----Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT----ET---Speed
   65 Ken Kraus                               4 Bob Newberry                 
E1                  -0.067  6.130 194.74     ****WINNER****  0.003  5.664 255.82
 Qualified:             #7  5.609 252.61                       #10  5.631 256.84
Newberry has two wins here and three runner-ups.

Kraus runs a career best of 5.609 to quality and then red lights away the top of the field advantage. Newberry runs close to his qualifying times to take the free pass into round two tomorrow.


 Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT-----ET---Speed-----Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT----ET---Speed
 3371 Fred Hagen                           1350 Paul Gill                    
E1   ****WINNER****  0.151  7.667 147.65                    -0.163  9.986 107.98
 Qualified:             #6  5.608 259.01                       #11  5.641 253.37
Another red light and Hagen gets lucky. He has his own problems in the left lane and slows. He qualified with a career best ET and MPH.

 Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT-----ET---Speed-----Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT----ET---Speed
    2 Jay Payne                              13 Mickey Ferro                 
E1   ****WINNER****  0.078  5.659 258.52                     0.156 No Time      
 Qualified:             #5  5.595 259.96                       #12  5.642 255.43
Payne can't claim anymore National Event points, but can still be a blocker. He was the runner up her in TAD in 1996 and in TAFC in 2001 [against Manzo].

Ferro is late and then things go from bad to worse, as the car drifts across his lane and takes out both the 660 blocks and the 1000 foot block. He did miss the finish line lights though... Payne makes a clean run and will have all his parts for tomorrow.


 Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT-----ET---Speed-----Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT----ET---Speed
    7 Steve Harker                          327 Chuck Cheeseman              
E1   ****WINNER****  0.090  5.596 257.53                           No Time      
 Qualified:             #4  5.579 259.46                       #13  5.644 254.28
6:44 p.m. ... and the dusting and cleaning on the top end has finished. Cheeseman was the runner up here in 1992 and 2004.

Well, that was weird! Cheeseman just sits there when the light went green. The crew didn't seem concerned and just casually pushed the Firebird off the track. Harker makes the quickest pass of the round on his single. He will have lane choice over Payne tomorrow.


 Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT-----ET---Speed-----Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT----ET---Speed
  237 Von Smith                              35 Andy Bohl                    
E1   ****WINNER****  0.035  5.602 256.16                     0.037 10.222  83.20
 Qualified:             #3  5.556 259.26                       #14  5.667 252.33
Bohl does another burnout off the starting line, drives it to the 330 lights and finally lifts. Smith runs close to his career best 5.556 and 259.26 to take the easy win.He will also have lane choice in round two tomorrow against Hagen.

 Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT-----ET---Speed-----Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT----ET---Speed
 1777 Bob Tasca III                           6 Mick Snyder                  
E1   ****WINNER****  0.066  5.615 258.96                     0.048  5.736 242.41
 Qualified:             #2  5.547 261.47                       #15  5.674 251.67
Tasca was the runner up here in 2006. Snyder gets the advantage off the line and leads to near mid-track, where the engine starts to expire. Lots of smoke, but no oil on the track. Tasca makes a strong pass and will meet Newberry in the next round with lane choice.

 Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT-----ET---Speed-----Car#-Driver(Opp'nt)-RT----ET---Speed
    1 Frank Manzo                            54 Vern Moats                   
E1   ****WINNER****  0.112  5.551 262.33                     0.104  6.160 193.65
 Qualified:             #1  5.498 264.34                       #16  5.675 255.34
Manzo is celebrating his twenty-sixth U.S. Nationals this week-end. This is his fifth time as #1 qualifier and he has a 10-3 advantage over Moats. Moats won here in 1983 and was runner-up against Manzo in 1994.

After sixty feet, it is all Manzo. almost wire to wire with top time and speed of the round. Moats had the advantage off the line, but had to watch Manzo just pull steadily away. Things go bad right after mid-track and the blower bangs, sending the burst panel flying into the air

Manzo will have lane choice over Nothstein.

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink




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