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Sat, 20 Sep 2003, 11:59 PM

McAmis Enters Eliminations as the Hottest Driver in Qualifying
By Bobby Bennett Jr., www.competitionplus.com
Photo by:Auto Imagery, Inc.





MILLINGTON, Tenn. --

Tim McAmis
Tim McAmis had an idea that the atmospheric conditions were going to get nasty as the final day of qualifications drew to an end at the NHRA O’Reilly Mid-South Nationals in Memphis, Tenn. The Moscow Mills, Mo.-based chassis builder threw everything he had at the Sanders Brothers ’63 Corvette and the end result was the only lap for a Pro Modified in the six-teens.

McAmis not only produced a 6.192, 226.06 to climb into the top spot for qualifying on the #8 stop on the ten-race tour, but also concluded the AMS Pro Modified Challenge Shootout points as the top seeded entry. He earned the position by overtaking the Summit-sponsored points leader Fred Hahn. Hahn failed to qualify.

The final qualifying session proved to be a Pro Modified tuner’s nightmare as not one single entry improved on the previous three attempts. In fact, the quickest run of the final session, a 6.26 by Mitch Stott, wouldn’t have been enough to gain a berth in the show.

In fact, McAmis’ scheduled first round opponent Thomas Patterson wounded his engine with a “let-it-all-hang-out” 6.259, 213.33. The past national event winner from Houston, Texas discovered problems prior to the call for the final session and elected to sit out.

Parts attrition was not a problem limited to the Patterson camp as one of the top ranked teams also fell victim. Taking a direct hit was the Roy Hill Mustang with Von Smith driving. Tireshake from previous runs were discovered prior to the final session, but not before the former Alcohol Funny Car World Champion nailed down the second spot with an incredible 6.210, 229.86.

Smith’s first round opponent on Sunday will provide a rematch of the recent NHRA Mac Tools U.S. Nationals as he will do battle with nitrous-runner Rickie Smith. Rickie’s best run came on Friday with a 6.255, 224.25.

The Radiac-sponsored Stott was the third quickest runner of the event as his 6.244, 226.89 was a mere .001 improvement over Friday’s best effort. He was able to climb into third in the AMS Pro Modified Challenge Shootout points with his effort. In the first round, Stott will meet Mike Castellana. Castellana was the quickest of the nitrous cars on Saturday, but failed to improve on Friday’s 6.253, 223.99.

Anchoring the top half of the field was defending event champion Shannon Jenkins, who was the quickest of the three nitrous cars that made the field. Jenkins clicked it early in the final session with a 6.250, 224.10. He will meet a resurgent Scott Ray in the CARQUEST-sponsored Corvette. Ray was impressive in his latest outing by recording back-to-back personal bests during qualifying.

The first round of professional eliminations are slated for 11 PM. Pro Modified is scheduled to open their eliminations rounds on the same schedule as the POWERade category falling behind Pro Stock Bike in the rotation.





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