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Sat, 27 Sep 2003, 12:45 PM

Top Alcohol Dragster Qualifying Notes, Final Session
By Jonathan Adams

JOLIET, Ill. - Notes from final, round 2 qualifying in Top Alcohol Dragster at the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, Third annual CARQUEST Auto Parts NHRA Nationals 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: Dave Hirata Runs 5.433/267.37, Now #8; Best prior run: 5.844/247.93, Was #17
Right Lane: Timothy Bowgren Runs 5.612/253.71, Now #16; Best prior run: 9.758/102.59, Was #26

10:00 a.m. We start with two guys who are not in. This is the last session, and the bump is 5.778.

Bowgren with a career best run. That's the good news. The bad news is that he is now on the bump. Hirata with a nice run to get in the top half of the field.

Left Lane: Robin Samsel Runs 5.629/244.43, Now #11; Best prior run: 5.479/246.89, Was #11
Right Lane: Bryan Weber Runs 5.965/172.54, Now #20; Best prior run: 9.569/114.18, Was #26

Weber was on a good pass until it popped the burst panel at about 700 feet. No help for Samsel.

Left Lane: Phil Mass Runs 5.618/254.62, Now #15; Best prior run: 5.610/255.53, Was #15
Right Lane: Tony Bartone Runs 10.916/88.86, Now #1; Best prior run: 5.255/275.51, Was #1

Lots of tire shake for Bartone and he clicks it early. Mass slows from yesterday.

Left Lane: Gary Ward Runs 5.640/256.06, Now #18; No Prior Run
Right Lane: Evan Knoll Runs 5.803/240.77, Now #20; Best prior run: 6.592/238.85, Was #24

Both drivers improve, but it's not enough. Career best for Knoll though.

Left Lane: Ken Perry Runs 5.543/255.63, Now #15; Best prior run: 6.412/145.86, Was #25
Right Lane: Douglas Foley Runs 5.531/258.86, Now #14; Best prior run: 5.516/258.47, Was #14

Perry could definitely change the bump. He does, but it may not last. Foley slows from his previous run. The bump is 5.610.

Left Lane: Chris Ricketts Runs 5.553/259.31, Now #16; Best prior run: 14.119/78.58, Was #28
Right Lane: Michael Gunderson Runs 5.495/273.94, Now #12; Best prior run: 5.484/277.89, Was #12

Two injected-nitro machines here. Ricketts is out, Gunderson is in.

Another slow 60 foot time for Gunderson, 1.008. He slows by a hundredth at the finish line. Ricketts gets in on the bump.

Left Lane: Bill Reichert Runs 5.379/271.84, Now #2; Best prior run: 5.257/276.52, Was #2
Right Lane: Dave Hedges Jr. Runs 6.195/209.85, Now #26; Best prior run: 6.143/220.44, Was #26

Reichert pulls in looking for the pole. Hedges would need a career-best run to get in.

They both slow from Friday, and nothing changes.

Left Lane: Keith Stark Runs 5.385/241.50, Now #3; Best prior run: 5.266/268.22, Was #3
Right Lane: Russ Lindert Runs 6.778/132.43, Now #28; No Prior Run

Lindert, the defending Division 3 champ, is not in. Stark made the best run of his career yesterday.

It took Stark a long time to get started, and he had to do a short burnout. Stark was going 228 mph at the 1/8 mile, but then we smoke out of the right side of the engine. Still went 5.38. Lindert, meanwhile, shook and spun at the hit, recovered, then wounded something at the top end and will not get in.

Left Lane: Alan Bradshaw Runs 5.338/261.02, Now #5; Best prior run: 5.432/259.01, Was #7
Right Lane: Jared Dreher Runs 23.618/28.94, Now #19; Best prior run: 5.612/248.84, Was #19

Dreher, despite running his best e.t. ever yesterday, is not in. On this run, he smoked the tires at the hit and shut off very early. Bradshaw picks up a tenth in e.t. and two spots on the qualifying order.

Left Lane: Jeff Bohr Runs 6.930/133.03, Now #27; Best prior run: 6.733/141.58, Was #27
Right Lane: Mitch Myers Runs 5.665/232.31, Now #10; Best prior run: 5.470/252.85, Was #10

Bohr was all over his lane and had to lift early. Myers was trailing smoke at the finish line and did not improve.

Right Lane: Todd Datweiler Runs 5.406/267.27, Now #6; Best prior run: 5.387/258.62, Was #6

Datweiler is the last car in this session, but round one of the Allstars will count for qualifying for those eight drivers, so the field is not set yet. After a very soft leave--just .988 at 60 feet--the T&E team makes a nice run.

Left Lane: Fran Monaghan Jr Runs 5.465/261.42, Now #10; Best prior run: 5.495/255.97, Was #12
Right Lane: Jeff Wilson Runs 5.496/226.81, Now #14; Best prior run: 5.945/231.83, Was #18

The last four pair of cars are part of round one of the Allstars. So, not only are these racers chasing Allstar glory, they are also jockeying for position in the qualified field at the Carquest Nationals.

Monaghan is in, Wilson is not and is down to his last chance. Monaghan with the big speed and some improvement in e.t. Wilson slides into the field, but might have been quicker; something went away in the lights, as he only went 226 mph.

Left Lane: Mike Cofini No Time, Now #8; Best prior run: 5.425/259.51, Was #7
Right Lane: Marty Thacker Runs 5.359/268.01, Now #6; Best prior run: 8.348/131.04, Was #29

Cofini bangs the blower at the hit, and Thacker makes the quickest run by a blown car to get in the show. Nice run by that team.

Left Lane: David Wells Runs 5.434/239.95, Now #10; No Prior Run
Right Lane: Morgan Lucas Runs 5.306/270.64, Now #4; Best prior run: 5.311/270.81, Was #4

Lucas with a great run, as he improves by a hundredth. Wells makes a nice pass to get in the show.

Left Lane: John Haley Runs 5.656/255.97, Now #11; Best prior run: 5.463/243.94, Was #11
Right Lane: Shelly Howard Runs 5.477/261.37, Now #14; Best prior run: 6.029/169.25, Was #27

Howard gets in. No help for Haley here, so he stays eleventh.

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink

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