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Thu, 08 Nov 2018, 20:19 PM

Top Alcohol Funny Car Qualifying Notes, Session #1
By David Gerard

POMONA, Calif. - Notes from round 1 qualifying in Top Alcohol Funny Car at the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, 54th annual Auto Club NHRA Finals listing lane, driver name, elapsed time, top speed, and position in order following run:
Right Lane: Robert Turner Runs 6.745/150.85, Now #1

4:27 p.m. Weather conditions: air temperature 78 degrees, relative humidity 30 percent, barometer 28.82 inches, adjusted altitude 2,986 feet, track temperature 93 degrees. The sun is just dropping behind the grand stand.

Seventeen cars, so we should have a bump spot by the end of the round.

Strong leave for Turner, but the Mustang starts a steady pull towards the centerline and he has to lift.

Left Lane: Todd Swinford Runs 6.849/166.52, Now #2
Right Lane: Bret Williamson Runs 7.020/172.08, Now #3

Dueling pedal slaps right off the line for both drivers.

Williamson has to give it up early, but Swinford keeps on the loud pedal and puts a time on the board that will get him qualified today.

Left Lane: Hannes Wernhart No Time, Now #5
Right Lane: Tyson Parker Runs 6.373/139.75, Now #1

Parker has a strong leave, the engine goes bang, and then the chute comes out. He gets to the finish line to put a number on the boards.

Wernhart was on a good pass, but has the Monte Carlo drift to the center line and he nails the reflector, DQ'ing the run.

4:35p.m. Oil in the right lane and reflector pieces in the left!

Left Lane: Steve Gasparrelli Runs 9.937/99.22, Now #6
Right Lane: Ray Martin Runs 8.704/102.64, Now #5

4:49 p.m. Back to qualifying! Sun is down and the track lights are on.

Gasparrelli hikes the front wheels at the green and then goes into shake. He gives it up and coasts.

Martin didn't get much further before his Monte Carlo was a blur too.

Left Lane: Kris Hool Runs 5.662/250.83, Now #1
Right Lane: Brian Hough Runs 6.241/165.48, Now #2

Two strong leaves and Hool's Camaro drives hard towards the wall and he powers it back to near the groove to post our first five and take the #1 spot for now.

Hough has his car head for the wall too and he finally gives it up and is coasting early.

Kris Hool's incremental times: 60ft-0.954 sec., 330ft-2.519, 660ft-3.751/202.91 mph, 1,000ft-4.787.

Left Lane: Ulf Leanders Runs 5.461/268.17, Now #1
Right Lane: Jay Payne Runs 6.092/179.21, Now #3

Two strong leaves and Payne has to step off the pedal early.

Leanders shows big power and drives right to the top of the ladder with a straight and true pass.

Ulf Leanders' incremental times: 60ft-0.936 sec., 330ft-2.438, 660ft-3.617/210.18 mph, 1,000ft-4.620.
Jay Payne's incremental times: 60ft-0.985 sec., 330ft-2.538, 660ft-3.732/205.16 mph, 1,000ft-4.908.

Left Lane: John Lombardo Jr. Runs 9.873/88.43, Now #11
Right Lane: Doug Gordon Runs 9.747/93.04, Now #10

Too much power down low for both cars and they coast on down.

Left Lane: Chris Marshall Runs 6.980/151.60, Now #8
Right Lane: Annie Whiteley No Time, Now #14

Odd! Whiteley's Camaro just sits on the line at the green and she gets pulled back and away.

Marshall has the shake and spin cycle too and has to lift.

Left Lane: Shane Westerfield Runs 7.007/135.82, Now #9
Right Lane: Sean Bellemeur Runs 13.178/79.32, Now #15

The session ends with another pair of shake, spin, and lift.

Only two cars in the fives!

5:05 p.m. Ulf Leanders is number one at 5.461

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink

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