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Mon, 4 Sep 2000, 04:38 PM

INDY - Top Fuel Round 3 Eliminations
By Larry Sullivan

CLERMONT, Ind. - Results of round 3 eliminations in Top Fuel at the 46th annual U.S. Nationals:

  15 Gary Clapshaw       4.779 307.44  Q    6 Melanie Troxel      4.689 313.37
   (C McClenatha) 0.544  4.706 310.41  E1   (D Lampus    ) 0.517  4.735 267.59
   (J Amato     ) 0.495  4.733 272.12  E2   (B Vandergrif) 0.502  4.659 320.13
 *****WINNER***** 0.494  4.684 312.35  E3                  0.592  5.323 224.51
3:28 PM Troxel barely made the call for the semifinals, the car coming into the lanes at the last minute and the team scrambling to get it ready to fire. Clapshaw was already in the lanes, prepared to run in the right lane, but Troxel's team pulled into the right lane and forced Clapshaw's to move to the left lane. At the green Troxel's car did not respond, the engine blubbering and the header flames irregular. Nothing wrong with Clapshaw's car, the car leaping off the starting line and making a great-looking run, but in the head-on shot on TV we could see the car getting very sideways in the middle of the run when the engine dropped a cylinder or two.

   4 Tony Schumacher     4.662 314.75  Q    8 Kenny Bernstein     4.697 314.46
   (D Herbert   ) 0.511  4.673 309.27  E1   (G Scelzi    ) 0.479  4.711 309.91
   (L Dixon     ) 0.502  4.607 316.45  E2   (D Kalitta   ) 0.475  4.651 305.42
 *****WINNER***** 0.495  4.618 314.17  E3                  0.531  9.604  82.61
Schumacher has the field in a headlock, making his eighth good run in a row at this event, posting the second-quickest elapsed time of the weekend. Bernstein lost traction after 100 feet or so and was never a factor. Schumacher has lane choice against Clapshaw in the finals.

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