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Sat, 30 Sep 2000, 02:26 PM

TOPEKA - Top Fuel Qualifying Notes, Session #3
By Rick Green

TOPEKA, Kan. - Notes from round 3 qualifying in Top Fuel at the 12th annual Advance Auto Parts 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: Doug Kalitta Runs 4.612/311.34, Now #2; Best prior run: 9.932/79.57, Was #19
Right Lane: Jim Cavalieri Runs 12.237/65.74, Now #13; Best prior run: 5.024/255.97, Was #12

12:04 PM Kalitta makes a huge leap into the number two position. Cavalieri lifted the front wheels about five feet into the air on the launch, was able to set it down without doing any damage to the car.

We are experiencing a light sprinkle of rain and they are holding the next pair of cars behind the waterbox until it stops.

Left Lane: Don Lampus Runs 4.677/299.66, Now #8; Best prior run: 5.136/239.02, Was #14
Right Lane: Joe Hartley Runs 4.934/289.69, Now #14; Best prior run: 5.436/180.62, Was #16

12:14 PM Lampus finally able to get the car to hook up, but had a big puff of smoke on the top end. Hartley used up an engine around 1000 feet. We are down for a clean up.

Left Lane: Rhonda Hartman-Smith Runs 11.008/80.52, Now #18; Best prior run: 5.458/178.21, Was #17
Right Lane: Doug Herbert Runs 4.735/287.72, Now #11; Best prior run: 6.773/120.94, Was #18

Hartman-Smith is up in smoke as soon as she hits the throttle, just blistering the big Goodyears. I could not see Herbert's pass because of all the tire smoke. Apparently she lost an oil line and we hav a big time oil down here. The oil starts from the starting line all the way down the track.

Left Lane: Paul Romine Runs 4.932/285.35, Now #15; Best prior run: 9.711/86.84, Was #19
Right Lane: Tim Gibson Runs 4.806/291.51, Now #12; Best prior run: 4.752/307.23, Was #12

Romine made a quick move toward the centerline around half track, but was able to reel it in and get into the show. Gibson with a wisp of smoke off the tires around half track.

Left Lane: Andrew Cowin Runs 4.907/273.55, Now #15; Best prior run: 5.330/204.76, Was #18
Right Lane: David Grubnic Runs 4.875/289.63, Now #10; Best prior run: 4.703/315.05, Was #10

Cowin did a great job of saving that ride. He made a quick and severe move toward the centerline, almost like a turn toward the centerline. Just like Romine did, but quicker. Again he did a great job keeping it in his lane, and oh by the way he got in to the program with that pass. No help for Grubnic.

Left Lane: Joe Amato Runs 5.582/163.95, Now #13; Best prior run: 4.818/285.17, Was #13
Right Lane: Larry Dixon Runs 9.989/82.46, Now #6; Best prior run: 4.643/306.95, Was #6

Dixon was blistering the tires by the 150-foot mark. Amato lost traction and boiled the hides around the same place Romine and Cowin made moves toward the centerline.

Left Lane: Bob Vandergriff Runs 4.749/294.18, Now #9; Best prior run: 4.693/309.06, Was #9
Right Lane: Cory McClenathan Runs 5.519/165.25, Now #5; Best prior run: 4.639/309.98, Was #5

Vandergriff lifted the front tires right on the launch sat them back down and then right back up real quick. When they came back to earth for good his car was marching right down broadway until around 1000 feet. That is when his engine started to go away and put out a bunch of oil on the track. McClenathan having problems past half track and clicked it off.

Left Lane: Melanie Troxel Runs 5.278/184.04, Now #7; Best prior run: 4.645/308.07, Was #7
Right Lane: Kenny Bernstein Runs 4.659/302.69, Now #3; Best prior run: 4.616/313.15, Was #3

Bernstein with a good clean pass straight down broadway. Melanie was real loose on the top end and clicked it off.

Left Lane: Tony Schumacher Runs 4.778/290.51, Now #4; Best prior run: 4.633/314.02, Was #4
Right Lane: Gary Scelzi Runs 4.679/305.08, Now #1; Best prior run: 4.604/309.98, Was #1

Number one and two in the points chase and this was a pretty good drag race. Scelzi holds on to the number one spot and Romine is now on the bubble with a 4.932 seconds. That wraps up the third round of Top Fuel quailying.

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