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Mon, 5 Sep 2005, 01:01 PM

Funny Car Round 1 Eliminations
By Dave Rowe

CLERMONT, Ind. - Results of round 1 eliminations in Funny Car at the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, 51st annual Mac Tools U.S. Nationals:

  427 Tony Bartone                            5 Eric Medlen                  
E1                   0.105  5.132 250.41     ****WINNER****  0.088  4.923 310.63
 Qualified:            #11  4.811 322.19                        #6  4.755 320.66
11:24 a.m. Weather conditions: air temperature 71 degrees, relative humidity 43 percent, barometer 29.65 inches, adjusted altitude 1,318 feet, track temperature 106 degrees.

This is the first meeting between Medlen and Bartone. Bartone has six finals here in the Top Alcohol Funny Car class, winning twice.

Bartone was giving Medlen a run for his money for the first 400 feet or so, then he started mixing up cylinders and slowed. Medlen went right down the groove, then banged the blower just as he went through the lights.

    4 Gary Densham                           73 Frank Pedregon               
E1                   0.100  4.966 281.54     ****WINNER****  0.079  4.911 309.84
 Qualified:            #14  4.835 310.77                        #3  4.732 326.08
This is Pedregon's 8th Indy and this is his best qualifying position since '01. He won this race in '99. Densham is the defending champ. His first Indy was in '83.

Pedregon rolls in deep, then gets off the line first. Densham pulls around him at the 60 foot mark, then Pedregon makes a move, reels densham in, and goes on for the win.

Pedregon will have lane choice over Medlen in round two.

   10 Phil Burkart                            1 John Force                   
E1   ****WINNER****  0.093  5.461 220.76                     0.071 No Time      
 Qualified:            #16  4.852 317.79                        #1  4.726 326.24
This is Force's 9th start from the number one position here at Indy. He has won here four times and has runnered-up twice. He is 6-6 against Burkart. This is Burkart's 4th start from the 16th spot here. He has never won a round at Indy.

Force gets off the line first, but Burkart powers by at the 60 foot mark. Force gets about 300 feet out, strikes the tires, pedals several times, then crosses the center-line and takes out the 1000 foot timing cone. Burkart struck the tires around half-track, pedaled a couple of times, and went on through for the win.

  388 Jim Head                                2 Del Worsham                  
E1                   0.133  8.935  85.97     ****WINNER****  0.114  4.846 318.47
 Qualified:            #13  4.833 320.51                        #4  4.746 324.51
Worsham runnered-up here in '92. Head won this race in Funny Car in '84 and in Top Fuel in '97. He hasn't won a round since '97. This is the first meeting between these two. Worsham won the shoo tout yesterday and is going for the double-up here.

Head is behind from the start, then strikes the tires about 300 feet out. He pedals once, then loses traction again, then finally gives up on the run.

    8 Tony Pedregon                        7000 Robert Hight                 
E1   ****WINNER****  0.075  5.030 294.18                     0.114  6.501 146.15
 Qualified:            #15  4.837 321.88                        #2  4.731 326.00
Pedregon runnered-up here in '01, his first race here was in '93.

Hight is late off the line, then strikes the tires about 200 feet out and gives up on the run. Pedregon goes right down the groove and takes the win.

  206 Bob Gilbertson                        503 Tommy Johnson Jr.            
E1   ****WINNER****  0.104  4.946 307.58                     0.069  6.337 181.86
 Qualified:            #12  4.827 313.29                        #5  4.748 325.77
Johnson runnered-up here in '02. He 5-1 facing Gilbertson in career match-ups.

Johnson gets off the line first, but Gilbertson drives around him at the 60 foot mark. Johnson gets about 300 feet out and goes up in smoke. Gilbertson goes right down the groove and moves on to the next round against Worsham, Worsham with lane choice.

    7 Tim Wilkerson                           3 Gary Scelzi                  
E1                   0.097  6.602 139.92     ****WINNER****  0.142  4.931 315.78
 Qualified:            #10  4.779 322.65                        #7  4.763 327.74
Scelzi won here in Top Fuel in '98. He is 5-2 lifetime facing Wilkerson. Wilkerson runnered-up here in '97 and won the race in '03. This is his 10th US Nationals.

Wilkerson gets off the line first, then Scelzi starts to reel him in. Wilkerson hangs on until just before half-track, then strikes the tires and loses the blower belt. Scelzi drives around him for the win. Scelzi will have lane choice over Tony Pedregon in round two.

   28 Ron Capps                               6 Whit Bazemore                
E1                   0.083  4.905 310.48     ****WINNER****  0.048  4.924 315.64
 Qualified:             #9  4.769 322.34                        #8  4.768 323.81
Bazemore won this race in '92 and '01. His first indy was in 1990. This is Capps' 10th Indy. He hasn't won a round here in four years.

This was a great drag race. Bazemore gets off the line first and starts to pull away. Capps starts reeling him in, almost pulling even at the 1000 foot mark. Bazemore holds him off and takes the hole-shot win. He will have lane choice over Burkart in round two. Whit Bazemore's incremental margins: 60ft(0.021), 330 ft(0.025), 660ft(0.011), 1,000ft(0.007). MOV: 0.0167 seconds (approximately 8 feet).

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink

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