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Sat, 16 Feb 2013, 18:35 PM

Funny Car Qualifying Notes, Final Session
By David Gerard

POMONA, Calif. - Notes from final, round 4 qualifying in Funny Car at the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, 53rd annual O'Reilly NHRA Winternationals presented by Super Start Batteries 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: Phil Burkart Runs 4.640/208.84, Now #15; Best prior run: 8.280/62.49, Was #17
Right Lane: Terry Haddock Runs 10.905/89.63, Now #18; No Prior Run

2:45 p.m. Weather conditions: air temperature 77 degrees, relative humidity 18 percent, barometer 28.90 inches, adjusted altitude 2,690 feet, track temperature 102 degrees.

Jeff Arend is on the bump spot at 6.344. Last chance to improve!

Haddock's run is over right off the line, with the Acme Refining Impala smoking the tires.

Burkart does what he needs to do, but ran a better 4.239 yesterday. The car was flying on down thetrack, when the blower belt left the engine right after the 660' lights.

Left Lane: Jeff Arend Runs 9.477/77.31, Now #17; Best prior run: 6.344/100.92, Was #17
Right Lane: Todd Lesenko Runs 4.250/302.69, Now #15; Best prior run: 5.695/126.65, Was #16

Todd Lesenko is on the bump spot at 5.695.

Arend smokes the tire right at the 60 foot lights and lifts.

Lesenko moves off the bump and into the #15 spot, where he will stay, as no one is left to bump him.

Todd Lesenko's incremental times: 60ft-0.938 sec., 330ft-2.420, 660ft-3.438/253.18 mph.

Left Lane: Tony Pedregon No Time, Now #14; Best prior run: 4.225/248.89, Was #13
Right Lane: John Force Runs 4.108/306.05, Now #11; Best prior run: 4.238/265.85, Was #14

Phil Burkart will stay on the bump spot at 4.640.

Pedregon leaves first and has the better incrementals down low. The engine starts to drop cylinders on the left side of the engine and drives the Camry hard towards the wall. He finally lifts, but its too late to save the shiny and headers on the left side of the car. He coasts on down the track, but will not get any times.

Force's Mustang wasn't real strong down low, but pulled hard to move up to the current #11 spot at the finish line.

John Force's incremental times: 60ft-0.910 sec., 330ft-2.339, 660ft-3.315/264.91 mph.

Left Lane: Bob Tasca III Runs 7.878/78.17, Now #13; Best prior run: 4.190/305.08, Was #13
Right Lane: Robert Hight Runs 7.454/87.99, Now #12; Best prior run: 4.111/311.20, Was #12

3:07 p.m. Back to qualifying.

They leave close together and Hight is starting to pull ahead until right before the 330 lights, where both cars strike the tires together.

Left Lane: Tim Wilkerson Runs 4.095/311.70, Now #8; Best prior run: 4.099/306.46, Was #9
Right Lane: Alexis DeJoria Runs 13.719/78.74, Now #10; Best prior run: 4.107/302.69, Was #10

Both cars are right below th top half of the field and looking to move up.

Well that was weird. DeJoria's engine RPM start to come up as the car leaves and then the pipes went wet. The car coast on down the track.

Wilkerson continues to improve in the tough conditions and makes a strong pass up a spot to the new #8 spot.

Tim Wilkerson's incremental times: 60ft-0.908 sec., 330ft-2.336, 660ft-3.307/265.43 mph.

Left Lane: Cruz Pedregon Runs 4.064/310.27, Now #5; Best prior run: 4.093/296.44, Was #7
Right Lane: Matt Hagan Runs 4.141/309.20, Now #9; Best prior run: 4.097/304.46, Was #9

Hagan is now number nine and will stay there for now. The Charger is a little lazy off the line and can't improve going down the track.

Pedregon makes the best pass of the session and moves two spots up the ladder to the new #5 spot. Great pass for the conditions.

Cruz Pedregon's incremental times: 60ft-0.899 sec., 330ft-2.313, 660ft-3.277/269.94 mph.
Matt Hagan's incremental times: 60ft-0.908 sec., 330ft-2.352, 660ft-3.346/261.72 mph.

Left Lane: Johnny Gray Runs 4.092/309.77, Now #7; Best prior run: 4.085/308.28, Was #7
Right Lane: Ron Capps Runs 4.433/204.70, Now #6; Best prior run: 4.073/311.92, Was #6

Capps gets away first and starts to pull steadily ahead until near the 330 lights, where the tires come loose and he slows.

Gray finishes his pass with a better speed, but can't quite match his prior best.

Johnny Gray's incremental times: 60ft-0.914 sec., 330ft-2.330, 660ft-3.301/263.10 mph.

Right Lane: Del Worsham Runs 4.113/307.65, Now #4; Best prior run: 4.054/310.20, Was #4

Worsham has been very consistent so far and adds another low four second to his totals. Nice clean pass.

Del Worsham's incremental times: 60ft-0.916 sec., 330ft-2.349, 660ft-3.321/266.00 mph.

Left Lane: Jack Beckman Runs 4.048/317.05, Now #2; Best prior run: 4.045/316.67, Was #2
Right Lane: Courtney Force Runs 4.075/314.97, Now #1; Best prior run: 4.036/318.24, Was #1

This will wrap up Funny Car qualifying with just 0.009 seconds separating them right now. Team Schumacher vs. Team Force.

Beckman shows his power and runs another strong 4.04 ET and a better speed. A great run for the conditions, but not enough to push Force off the top spot.

Force has a better sixty foot time and matched Beckman's 330 ET. The Mustang couldn't keep the pace and slows just a little after that.

Jack Beckman's incremental times: 60ft-0.907 sec., 330ft-2.326, 660ft-3.276/271.68 mph.
Courtney Force's incremental times: 60ft-0.899 sec., 330ft-2.326, 660ft-3.296/266.74 mph.

3:27 p.m. Phil Burkart is on the bump spot at 4.640.

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink

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