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Sat, 20 Sep 2003, 05:53 PM

Funny Car Qualifying Notes, Final Session
By Dave Rowe

MILLINGTON, Tenn. - Notes from final, round 4 qualifying in Funny Car at the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, 16th annual O'Reilly NHRA Mid-South Nationals presented by Pennzoil 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: Richard Hartman Runs 7.002/127.40, Now #19; Best prior run: 7.677/116.17, Was #19

4:15 PM Hartman completed his burnout and smoke started pouring out the right side header. He hits the throttle, loses traction about 200 feet out, then blows the engine at half-track. We'll be down for a few minutes for a cleanup. 4:18 PM

Left Lane: Scotty Cannon Runs 5.134/289.57, Now #17; Best prior run: 5.406/219.26, Was #18
Right Lane: Bob Gilbertson Runs 5.126/289.14, Now #16; Best prior run: 5.117/293.15, Was #16

Cannon has the third longest qualifying streak going right now and is not yet in the show.....and he doesn't make it. He was on a decent pass until the 1000-foot mark, then he started mixing up cylinders. Gilbertson makes a decent pass for the conditions and stays in on the bump.

Left Lane: Dale Creasy Jr. Runs 5.959/159.66, Now #18; Best prior run: 5.394/204.79, Was #18
Right Lane: Jack Wyatt No Time, Now #15; Best prior run: 5.090/291.45, Was #15

Wyatt was in the lanes ready to run but pulled out, no danger of being bumped out of the show.

Left Lane: Frank Pedregon Runs 5.083/257.53, Now #13; Best prior run: 4.987/296.37, Was #13
Right Lane: Dean Skuza Runs 5.687/171.93, Now #14; Best prior run: 5.074/279.79, Was #14

These two were side-by side until half-track, then Skuza hazes the tires and Pedregon pulls away.

Left Lane: Cruz Pedregon Runs 5.158/281.54, Now #12; Best prior run: 4.984/286.25, Was #12
Right Lane: Cory Lee Runs 5.012/301.87, Now #9; Best prior run: 4.915/315.71, Was #9

A pretty good side-by-side, both right down the groove.

Left Lane: Tommy Johnson Jr. Runs 6.250/144.30, Now #11; Best prior run: 4.938/249.67, Was #11
Right Lane: Tim Wilkerson Runs 4.965/307.65, Now #8; Best prior run: 4.912/311.70, Was #8

Wilkerson makes a good run, the quickest of the round so far. Johnson gets about 400 feet out and goes up in smoke.

Left Lane: Phil Burkart Runs 5.000/304.60, Now #10; Best prior run: 4.918/311.05, Was #10
Right Lane: Ron Capps Runs 7.267/116.49, Now #5; Best prior run: 4.857/313.15, Was #5

Capps gets about 400 feet out, strikes the tires and shuts down. Burkart makes a decent run, the engine not missing a beat, and he has the second quickest run of the round so far.

Left Lane: Del Worsham Runs 4.960/305.36, Now #7; Best prior run: 4.909/314.17, Was #7
Right Lane: Gary Densham Runs 4.886/315.05, Now #4; Best prior run: 4.856/311.99, Was #4

Big run for Densham, the best run for a funny car today.

Left Lane: Tony Pedregon Runs 4.940/310.27, Now #6; Best prior run: 4.892/312.57, Was #6
Right Lane: Gary Scelzi Runs 4.893/315.49, Now #3; Best prior run: 4.837/322.42, Was #3

A good drag race, these two were glued together all the way through the run.

Left Lane: John Force Runs 4.921/310.27, Now #2; Best prior run: 4.826/313.37, Was #2
Right Lane: Whit Bazemore Runs 4.877/315.86, Now #1; Best prior run: 4.826/316.67, Was #1

Force had a few choice words for Lee Beard, Bazemore's crew chief, after last round. Force thought he had taken too long to get Bazemore staged. The feeling was that we would have a staging battle here, but it was not to be. Force went in quickly, Bazemore went in right behind. A good way to end the show, both cars right down the groove, hitting on all cylinders all the way through the run.

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink

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