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Fri, 09 Nov 2012, 19:22 PM

Top Alcohol Dragster Qualifying Notes, Final Session
By Larry Sullivan





POMONA, Calif. - Notes from final, round 2 qualifying in Top Alcohol Dragster at the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series, 48th annual Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals 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: Larry Miersch Runs 5.549/266.32, Now #11; Best prior run: 13.635/76.97, Was #19

3:36 p.m. Weather conditions: air temperature 63 degrees, relative humidity 41 percent, barometer 28.74 inches, adjusted altitude 2,066 feet, track temperature 81 degrees.

Miersch made a full pass this time out, bumping Jackie Fricke from the field. Now Johnny Ahten is on the bump spot at 10.025.


Right Lane: Ray Martin Runs 5.508/235.68, Now #9; Best prior run: 12.340/48.40, Was #19

Martin lost traction on his first attempt. This one resulted in a full pass, bumping Ahten.

Now William Litton is on the bump spot at 9.770.

Left Lane: Brooks Brown No Time, Now #20; No Prior Run
Right Lane: Garrett Bateman Runs 5.326/264.34, Now #3; Best prior run: 11.746/72.61, Was #19

Brown's crew did not fire the engine on his first attempt, earlier today, and Bateman smoked the tires on his.

Brown went oh-for-two, once again pushed to the return road.

Bateman made up for his earlier problems with a nice run here, jumping all the way to third on the list.

Now Casey Grisel is on the bump spot at 6.552.

Left Lane: Greg Hunter Runs 5.672/203.28, Now #14; No Prior Run
Right Lane: Johnny Ahten Runs 8.202/101.16, Now #18; Best prior run: 10.025/84.12, Was #18

Hunter's car did not fire on his first attempt today and Ahten smoked the tires on his.

Ahten shook and almost crossed the centerline. Hunter's engine was eating itself all the way and trailed a lot of smoke from the headers when he lifted. His chutes did not come out and he made a trip into "the beach."

Left Lane: Jackie Fricke Runs 5.430/263.87, Now #9; Best prior run: 10.562/103.69, Was #20
Right Lane: William Litton No Time, Now #20; Best prior run: 9.770/85.86, Was #19

Fortunately, Hunter's car was not buried in the sand, so it only took a couple minutes to extract it.

Fricke got back into the field. Litton's car kept getting sideways every time he was on the throttle. It looked like he had a broken axle because the car was making a hard turn every time he tried to accelerate and he eventually took out the finish line timing reflector. His time was not good enough to make the field anyway (6.503) and the run was disqualified for hitting the timing reflector.

Left Lane: John Finke Runs 5.357/266.37, Now #6; Best prior run: 5.727/255.87, Was #16
Right Lane: Casey Grisel Runs 6.647/157.80, Now #18; Best prior run: 6.552/236.26, Was #18

John Finke was on the bump spot at 5.727. He got off nicely with a solid run, no visible problems. Grisel dropped a couple cylinders almost immediately, trailing a lot of raw fuel as he went down the track. He improved slightly, stayed 18th.

Now Greg Hunter is on the bump spot at 5.672.

Left Lane: Randy Eakins Runs 5.544/254.23, Now #15; Best prior run: 5.514/255.43, Was #14
Right Lane: Aaron Olivarez Runs 5.404/263.05, Now #10; Best prior run: 5.731/241.76, Was #17

Olivarez appears to be the last car in the lanes with a shot at bumping Hunter from the field.

Olivarez trailed a little raw fuel, but stepped way up to get into the field, bumping Hunter and pushing Eakins down one spot. Eakins made his second full pass of the day, but failed to improve.

Now Larry Miersch is on the bump spot at 5.549, but he appears to be safe because the remaining cars are already in the field.

Left Lane: Joey Severance Runs 5.418/262.69, Now #12; Best prior run: 5.509/247.93, Was #14
Right Lane: Bill Reichert Runs 5.265/267.85, Now #3; Best prior run: 5.446/260.01, Was #12

Reichert upped the ante, making a strong statement to move way up the ladder.Severance also stepped up smartly, but only enough to move a couple rungs up the ladder, still in the bottom half.

Left Lane: Randy Meyer Runs 5.383/257.28, Now #5; Best prior run: 5.335/259.16, Was #5
Right Lane: Duane Shields Runs 5.382/261.88, Now #10; Best prior run: 5.395/258.76, Was #10

Meyer's car was trailing a lot of raw fuel on this run and he still ran within a thousandth of Shields.

Left Lane: Jim Whiteley Runs 5.227/274.27, Now #1; Best prior run: 5.261/273.83, Was #2
Right Lane: Mark Taliaferro Runs 5.397/261.78, Now #9; Best prior run: 5.373/270.05, Was #9

Whiteley made an awesome run - the quickest and fastest ever by a supercharged alcohol car. Wow! Obviously, both numbers are career-bests.

Taliaferro's car was making darting moves toward the centerline. Somehow, he managed to stay in his own lane.

Jim Whiteley's incremental times: 60ft-0.913 sec., 330ft-2.326, 660ft-3.442/221.34 mph, 1,000ft-4.407.

Left Lane: Chris Demke Runs 5.318/269.40, Now #2; Best prior run: 5.259/271.52, Was #2
Right Lane: Chase Copeland Runs 5.351/263.10, Now #6; Best prior run: 5.369/269.24, Was #8

Two good runs, Copeland moving up a couple spots, but Whiteley stays atop the list going into eliminations.

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink




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