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Fri, 2 Nov 2007, 08:40 PM

Top Alcohol Funny Car Qualifying Notes, Final Session
By Darryl Jackman

POMONA, Calif. - Notes from final, round 3 qualifying in Top Alcohol Funny Car at the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, 43nd annual Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals listing lane, driver name, elapsed time/top speed this round, position in order following run, best prior elapsed time/speed, and position in order prior to run:
Left Lane: Bret Williamson Runs 5.770/248.16, Now #12; Best prior run: 6.652/162.14, Was #26
Right Lane: Alexis De Joria Runs 5.835/252.00, Now #17; Best prior run: 6.082/245.85, Was #24

4:56 p.m. Weather conditions: air temperature 79 degrees, relative humidity 34 percent, barometer 29.90 inches, adjusted altitude 2,698 feet, track temperature 98 degrees.

We're down to the final session for the Alcohol Funny Cars. Williamson makes the first move and goes from dead last to #12. De Joria made her best hit of the weekend and misses the show by .002. Nothstein had a 5.833 to De Joria's 5.835. So close...

Left Lane: John Patton Runs 5.810/247.79, Now #13; Best prior run: 6.403/167.84, Was #26
Right Lane: Paul Crifasi Runs 5.914/250.64, Now #25; Best prior run: 5.973/241.84, Was #24

Patton makes another of those banzai moves as he goes from the very bottom to #13 and in the show. Crifasi has the power but just misses the setup.

Left Lane: Hank Coolidge Runs 5.773/246.84, Now #13; Best prior run: 5.996/242.50, Was #26
Right Lane: Steve Gasparrelli Runs 7.146/132.31, Now #25; Best prior run: 5.908/236.13, Was #24

Coolidge just follows the pattern. He's in and Gasparrelli's not. Tough year for the Gasparrelli's.

Left Lane: Russ Parker Runs 9.587/113.16, Now #24; Best prior run: 5.865/250.23, Was #23
Right Lane: Mark Woznichak Runs 5.829/245.36, Now #18; Best prior run: 5.901/251.34, Was #24

Parker gets really loose before 330ft and is coasting silently as The Woz goes by. Only problem was he just didn't go by as quickly as he needed to to make the field.

Left Lane: Larry Miner Runs 6.010/229.98, Now #21; Best prior run: 5.839/248.25, Was #21
Right Lane: Dennis Taylor Runs 5.911/249.49, Now #23; Best prior run: 5.852/252.38, Was #23

Both racers fall short in this pair. It was even worse for Miner as he has caused the Safety Safari to enter the track and begin cleaning. We're down for a few as the magicians do their work.

Left Lane: Steve Burck Runs 5.851/239.61, Now #17; Best prior run: 5.823/248.16, Was #17
Right Lane: Vern Moats Runs 6.703/143.25, Now #22; Best prior run: 5.846/252.52, Was #22

So close for Burck. Thompson is on the bump at 5.819 and Burck runs 5.851. Close but no eliminations for that team. Moats is perhaps the bigger surprise as his team will be loading up to go home as well.

Left Lane: Clint Thompson Runs 5.630/256.31, Now #2; Best prior run: 5.819/253.61, Was #16
Right Lane: Marty Nothstein Runs 5.891/247.47, Now #19; Best prior run: 5.833/243.41, Was #19

I'd guess that Thompson fells just a bit safer as the #2 qualifier than he did on the bump. He used a lot of lane but still slots in behind Smith. Nothstein was all over his lane as well but it didn't turn out quite as well for him. He remains #19 and will be heading home with a DNQ.

Left Lane: Ken Kraus Runs 6.434/243.63, Now #16; Best prior run: 5.818/246.57, Was #16
Right Lane: Ron August Jr No Time, Now #11; Best prior run: 5.726/255.48, Was #11

August loses his run as the 330ft marker is now up against the left wall. He drove into it at full power and it almost went into the corner pocket. Kraus waited to leave and watched all of this from the starting line. the block had almost stopped as he passed. Kraus was also spinning the tires very hard and hoping to keep his ride in it's own lane. He succeeded but remains on the bump. I believe that actually sets the field and we are now qualifying only for position.

Left Lane: Bernie Harrington Runs 8.314/84.02, Now #12; Best prior run: 5.749/223.28, Was #12
Right Lane: Jay Payne Runs 5.656/258.02, Now #5; Best prior run: 5.681/256.31, Was #8

Harrington shakes hard at the hit and it's Payne that goes all the way to #5.

Left Lane: Sean Bellemeur Runs 5.670/254.33, Now #7; Best prior run: 5.723/254.71, Was #10
Right Lane: Brian Hough Runs 5.978/204.08, Now #9; Best prior run: 5.676/252.85, Was #8

A big cloud of smoke behind Hough so he remains #9. Bellemeur will now pick his lane in the first round.

Left Lane: Sean O'Bannon Runs 5.593/256.21, Now #2; Best prior run: 5.718/253.90, Was #10
Right Lane: Kebin Kinsley Runs 9.212/85.86, Now #9; Best prior run: 5.675/253.71, Was #8

O'Bannon sets his career best ET here in the final round of qualifying and he just missed resetting his best speed. sure says just how good the run was by Smith earlier today. Kinsley remains #8 as his car fell silent before half track.

Left Lane: Doug Gordon Runs 5.660/258.02, Now #7; Best prior run: 5.656/257.14, Was #7
Right Lane: Jason Rupert Runs 12.770/52.58, Now #5; Best prior run: 5.654/251.49, Was #5

Rupert gets to about 300ft before the shuts it down. Gordon remains #7 but lays down good numbers for the second time.

Left Lane: Von Smith Runs 5.585/257.83, Now #1; Best prior run: 5.589/258.12, Was #1
Right Lane: Jeff Carroll Runs 5.651/254.62, Now #4; Best prior run: 5.641/249.03, Was #4

Smith proves his earlier 5.58 was no fluke as he simply repeats and goes .004 quicker. Carroll was back in form in the final session as well. He will start from the #4 spot when eliminations begin. That ends the qualifying for the Alcohol Cars here at the NHRA Finals.

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink

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