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Sat, 02 Nov 2013, 20:06 PM

Top Alcohol Dragster Qualifying Notes, Final Session
By Larry Sullivan

LAS VEGAS - Notes from final, round 3 qualifying in Top Alcohol Dragster at the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series, Pacific Division, Las Vegas Gambler Showdown Division 7 Finale 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: Jeff Ashwell Runs 5.597/254.52, Now #15; Best prior run: 6.150/165.66, Was #18

4:21 p.m. Weather conditions: air temperature 76 degrees, relative humidity 23 percent, barometer 27.77 inches, adjusted altitude 3,962 feet, track temperature 97 degrees.

Dan Mercier is on the bump spot at 5.436.

There are 19 dragsters trying to fit into eight spos on the ladder. This could get brutal!

Ashwell made his best run of the event, but that left him well short of the field.

Left Lane: Eugene Tumbarello Runs 5.617/255.24, Now #16; Best prior run: 5.731/251.67, Was #16

Told you it was going to be brutal. Tumbarello made a good run, with his best ET of the season, stayed eight positions out of the field.

Left Lane: Ashley Sanford Runs 5.426/262.28, Now #7; Best prior run: 5.577/264.23, Was #14
Right Lane: William Litton No Time, Now #18; Best prior run: 5.882/220.94, Was #18

Litton made his burnout, backed up, and the engine went silent.

Sanford needed career-best ET to get in and she got it! That bumped Mercier, but the bump time stayed the same. Now Garrett Bateman is on the bump spot at 5.436, with a better speed than Mercier.

Ashley Sanford's incremental times: 60ft-0.953 sec., 330ft-2.456, 660ft-3.605/217.46 mph, 1,000ft-4.581.

Left Lane: Megan McKernan Runs 5.421/265.90, Now #7; Best prior run: 5.531/266.42, Was #14
Right Lane: Larry Miersch Runs 5.669/231.00, Now #17; Best prior run: 5.750/233.60, Was #17

It looked like both drivers were going to get in, but his engine went sour on the top end and his speed fell off. McKernan did not have any problems and she bumped Miersch from the field.

Now Ashley Sanford is on the bump spot at 5.426.

Megan McKernan's incremental times: 60ft-0.965 sec., 330ft-2.476, 660ft-3.618/219.29 mph, 1,000ft-4.585.

Left Lane: Buddy Domingue No Time, Now #14; Best prior run: 5.527/252.90, Was #14
Right Lane: Michael Manners Runs 5.555/253.90, Now #13; Best prior run: 5.521/258.86, Was #13

Domingue made his burnout, backed up and pulled up to stage. then something went wrong with his engine, alternating misfires from several headers until he shut it off.

Manners made a clean pass, but failed to improve.

Left Lane: Duane Shields Runs 5.443/260.31, Now #11; Best prior run: 5.467/258.86, Was #12
Right Lane: Don St. Arnaud Runs 5.499/258.71, Now #12; Best prior run: 5.463/264.39, Was #11

Both these drivers were capable of running the numbers required to make the field and both made good runs, but both came up short.

Left Lane: Dan Mercier Runs 5.616/262.85, Now #10; Best prior run: 5.436/256.21, Was #10
Right Lane: Garrett Bateman Runs 5.327/268.06, Now #4; Best prior run: 5.436/266.48, Was #9

These two were recently bumped from the field and fully capable of running quick enough to get back in. They are the last two cars in line with a chance to bump McKernan and Sanford from the field.

Mercier had to backpedal about 300 feet out and that ended his chances of getting into the field, but Bateman stepped way up and easily got into the field, in the top half for now.

That bumped Sanford from the field, putting McKernan on the bump spot. However, she is safe now, the remaining cars are already in the field.

Garrett Bateman's incremental times: 60ft-0.925 sec., 330ft-2.406, 660ft-3.538/220.84 mph, 1,000ft-4.498.

Left Lane: Shawn Cowie Runs 5.362/267.22, Now #7; Best prior run: 5.369/264.29, Was #7
Right Lane: Chris Demke Runs 5.306/270.64, Now #3; Best prior run: 5.353/268.49, Was #6

The remaining cars are running for first-round lane choice and pairings.

Cowie improved slightly, stayed seventh. Demke improved a bunch, moved into the top half.

Shawn Cowie's incremental times: 60ft-0.946 sec., 330ft-2.384, 660ft-3.533/214.14 mph, 1,000ft-4.521.
Chris Demke's incremental times: 60ft-0.926 sec., 330ft-2.366, 660ft-3.503/216.76 mph, 1,000ft-4.477.

Left Lane: Ray Martin Runs 5.335/268.12, Now #6; Best prior run: 5.333/268.54, Was #6
Right Lane: Johnny Ahten Runs 10.506/89.73, Now #4; Best prior run: 5.323/262.39, Was #4

Ahten's crew made some last-minute repairs to fix a small fuel leak, then he made a short burnout to keep from delaying Martin, who had already made his burnout. At the green, Ahten's car went to the right, then shook and he lifted. Martin made another nice run, his three runs this weekend between 3.386 and 3.333.

Ray Martin's incremental times: 60ft-0.931 sec., 330ft-2.371, 660ft-3.516/215.27 mph, 1,000ft-4.499.

Left Lane: Jim Whiteley Runs 5.293/271.41, Now #2; Best prior run: 5.291/271.13, Was #2
Right Lane: Joey Severance Runs 10.626/113.87, Now #1; Best prior run: 5.287/269.03, Was #1

Last pair. Severance took the top spot away from Whiteley in the second session. He spun the tires hard this time out, but Whiteley failed to improve and they stayed where they were on the ladder.

Jim Whiteley's incremental times: 60ft-0.935 sec., 330ft-2.369, 660ft-3.499/218.58 mph, 1,000ft-4.468.

That's it, Severance is #1 at 5.287 and he will race #8, Megan McKernan, at 5.421

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink

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