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Sat, 27 Oct 2001, 06:19 PM

LAS VEGAS 2 - Federal-Mogul Dragster Round 1 Eliminations
By Larry Sullivan

LAS VEGAS - Results of round 1 eliminations in Federal-Mogul Dragster at the Inaugural AC Delco Las Vegas NHRA Nationals:

   9 David Baca          5.595 256.65  Q    8 Mark Niver          5.568 250.09
                  0.467  5.869 255.87  E1 *****WINNER***** 0.502  5.684 231.71
2:33 PM We open eliminations with a pair of injected nitro cars. Baca got the holeshot, but lost the advantage in the first 60 feet, his car sluggish while Niver's was almost up to his qualifying pace.

  12 Tony Meredyk        5.617 241.45  Q    5 Brian Hough         5.519 253.90
                  0.536  9.455  96.14  E1 *****WINNER***** 0.600  5.501 254.95
Injected nitro for Meredyk, blown alcohol for Hough. Hough had about a tenth of a second advantage based on their qualifying runs, but Meredyk's car dropped several cylinders on the launch and it wasn't even that close, despite Hough's late launch.

  16 Brandon Bernstein   5.708 249.21  Q    1 Duane Shields       5.397 258.07
                  0.462  5.881 239.23  E1 *****WINNER***** 0.535  5.471 257.58
Bernstein struggled through qualifying, barely making it in on his last attempt. Shields was sharp right out of the box, with a 5.451 on his first run and even better elapsed times on each of the next two runs. The race went according to form, Bernstein with the starting line advantage, but unable to run the number on the other end, while Shields launched hard (a 0.935 60-foot time) and was quick on all segments of the run. He will have lane choice against Niver in round two.

   2 Mark Hentges        5.485 251.30  Q   15 Darryl Hitchman     5.702 231.48
                  0.508  9.130  82.08  E1 *****WINNER***** 0.495  6.160 169.55
This one was strange, #2 qualifier Hentges losing power after 330 feet and Hitchman losing power on the top end, both cars coasting across the line.

  14 Bob Perkins         5.656 245.67  Q    3 Paul Jones          5.502 253.47
                  1.020  6.581 196.89  E1 *****WINNER***** 0.487  5.598 251.72
Perkins had a bad day at the office. His car started trailing a spray of oil as soon as it launched. Then the oil spray turned into a big fireball. The fire went out in the shutdown area (probably out of oil). The cleanup starts at the starting line, the rice hull ash trail extending all the way down the track. Oh yeah, Jones made an on-time departure and a clean run, right down the groove.

  13 Tony Bartone        5.638 239.95  Q    4 Brandon Henkelman   5.508 258.57
                  0.437  5.851 236.30  E1 *****WINNER***** 0.480  5.761 250.04
In the Summit race here, Bartone was in the "Wrestlemania" car. here he did all he could and almost pulled off a holeshot win, but Henkelman had too much on the top end. Margin of victory = 0.047 seconds (approximately 16 feet). Henkelman advances, but loses lane choice to Hough in round two.

  11 Steve Cantrell      5.612 251.34  Q    6 Mike Strasburg      5.547 254.95
                  0.516  5.733 245.14  E1 *****WINNER***** 0.498  5.512 253.99
Strasburg left first and was never challenged, Cantrell not able to even match his qualifying pace. Strasburg wins handily and earns lane choice against Jones in round two.

  10 Bill Reichert       5.608 252.95  Q    7 David Wells         5.555 249.72
                  0.503  5.634 254.90  E1 *****WINNER***** 0.467  5.587 252.95
Good race, but Wells was quicker at both ends of the track. Margin of victory = 0.083 seconds (approximately 31 feet). Wells will have lane choice when he faces Hitchman in the next round.

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink

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