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Sun, 9 Sep 2001, 11:31 AM

High Temps, Humidity at Toto Import Nationals
By Michael L. Jex

Temps in Upper 90's, Humidity above 65%



BAYTOWN, Texas. - After a morning rain shower the sun came out sweltering hot here at the Summit Import Series Toyo Tires Import Nationals at Houston Raceway Park.

Afternoon temperatures where in the upper nineties most of the day, making things rather uncomfortable for fans, and difficult for racers and crew chiefs to tune these temperamental high horsepower imports.

In the Pro Category a record ten cars are running for the available eight spots. Currently Moises Benitez from Lodi, New Jersey is on top with low ET and top speed of the event. He ran 7.596 at 180.55 during the third qualifying session this afternoon. Moises is followed by Jimmy O'Connor's Tyoytoa Tahoma Truck with a 7.739 173.58 mph pass, and points leader RJ Simrock is number three with a 7.789.

Joe Morgan from Corona CA continues to improve in his 2000 Ford Focus SE Wagon in Modified. In the final session of the day he recorded a best 9.480 143.23 mph effort to claim the top spot in Modified.

Hot Rod's Dominant driver all year has been Lisa Kubo. Lisa made just one pass today, but it was a tire blistering, tire spinning pass of 9.339 at 145.95 miles per hour. She is followed by Jimmy O'Connor's 2000 Honda Civic and Jojo Callos is number three.

In All Motor Scott Kelley made the long trip to Houston from Anaheim CA with his Toyo Tires Sponsored 1969 VW Fastback. In the 2nd session today Scott ran 11.301 at 119.59 mph to cover the field by over four tenths of a second. This chopped VW fastback reset the National Record for the category last month in Sacramento CA.

The on and off track action in the Street Tire class was as hot as the weather today. Points leader Ari Yallon failed to make a pass here today after breaking three motors on the dyno yesterday. Late word is Ari is on his way to Houston Raceway Park, and will try and qualify in the last chance session tomorrow morning. Steven Kan from Fort Worth is currently number one in the class with a 10.611 135.20 mph pass in his 93 RX7 followed by Ken Scheepers from Flower Mound Texas.

The gates here at Houston Raceway Park will open at 8:00 AM tomorrow morning, with a final round of qualifying set at 9:00 AM. Pre Race Activities will get underway at 11:00, with eliminations following at 12:00pm. Bring your sun screen and lots of liquid refreshment, more hot weather is forecast for tomorrow. Good 'Nite!



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