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Sun, 3 Sep 2000, 03:46 PM

BUD SHOOTOUT - Funny Car Round 2 Eliminations
By Larry Sullivan

CLERMONT, Ind. - Results of round 2 eliminations in Funny Car at the 2000 Budweiser Shootout at Indianapolis:

   3 Jim Epler           3.000  31.80  Q    7 Dean Skuza          7.000  28.90
   (R Capps     ) 0.513  5.053 295.21  E1   (W Bazemore  ) 0.500  5.105 302.69
 *****WINNER***** 0.497  5.084 296.44  E2                  0.488  5.120 295.79
2:35 PM The winner here will race the Force-Tony winner. Skuza got a small advantage at the start and was leading at 330 feet, but then Epler's car started to pull hard and he was slightly ahead at half track, extending that lead the rest of the way to win by a margin of victory = 0.027 seconds (approximately 12 feet). Close race, Epler's consistency paying off.

   1 John Force          1.000  35.80  Q    4 Tony Pedregon       4.000  30.10
   (D Worsham   ) 0.508  5.103 298.80  E1   (J Toliver   ) 0.508  5.114 285.71
 *****WINNER***** 0.510  5.014 303.64  E2                  0.517  5.037 293.79
A reminder, these runs do not count toward U.S. Nationals qualifying, where Tony is on the bubble. This was a close drag race, the margin of victory = 0.030 seconds (approximately 13 feet). Tony's engine started to smoke heavily in the lights, leaving a trail of fluid in the shutdown area, too late to make much difference in the outcome. Force will have lane choice against Epler in the Shootout final, around 4:00 PM today.

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