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Fri, 26 Oct 2001, 11:22 PM

LAS VEGAS 2 - Funny Car Qualifying Notes, Session #2
By Darryl Jackman

LAS VEGAS - Notes from round 2 qualifying in Funny Car at the Inaugural AC Delco Las Vegas NHRA 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: Frank Pedregon Runs 4.888/306.46, Now #5; Best prior run: 11.025/76.73, Was #22
Right Lane: David Benjamin Runs 5.443/222.58, Now #10; Best prior run: 10.200/91.08, Was #21

7:22 PM The pair of Funny Cars is out from under the bridge and we are about to begin the second session of nitro. John Force finished the first session in the top spot and Lewis Sweet is on the bump. Benjamin isn't out very often but he is known as a thinker that will try new ideas. Great lap for Frank in the CSK blue racer. Benjamin got loose and shutoff early. After the finish he drifted towards the concrete and touched the wall with a header.

Left Lane: Bob Bode Runs 10.695/71.12, Now #21; Best prior run: 9.191/90.24, Was #20
Right Lane: Jerry Toliver Runs 7.318/113.96, Now #14; Best prior run: 9.360/81.80, Was #22

Neither of these drivers got good laps in the first session and the jinx continued. Bode hit the pedal and the car made a right turn and headed for the center line. Toliver got a bit further but his car also dived towards the center and he also shut it down.

Left Lane: Louis Sweet Runs 9.504/83.22, Now #20; Best prior run: 8.346/96.40, Was #19
Right Lane: Dale Creasy Jr. Runs 5.386/205.35, Now #9; Best prior run: 9.234/93.35, Was #22

Creasy really had his hands full. It appeared he ran a quarter of a mile just to get to half track. Sweet appeared to be lined up pointed at the center line and when he launched he went directly for it.

Left Lane: Scotty Cannon Runs 4.899/318.47, Now #7; Best prior run: 8.028/105.27, Was #18
Right Lane: Gary Densham Runs 5.925/156.88, Now #14; Best prior run: 9.166/100.40, Was #21

Cannon gets a good pass in the books even though it appeared he clicked it a shade early. Big speed for him. Densham launched hard but began hazing the tires before four hundred feet and he called it off.

Left Lane: Al Hofmann Runs 4.975/294.05, Now #8; Best prior run: 6.341/139.26, Was #15
Right Lane: Bruce Sarver Runs 10.416/83.55, Now #20; Best prior run: 8.194/99.12, Was #20

Hofmann and Dunn are starting to have a bit more fun this weekend as he makes it into the top half of the field. Sarver, on the other hand, is not. The E-Moola ride was smoking the tires by four hundred feet and he was forced to lift.

Left Lane: Del Worsham Runs 8.289/98.16, Now #15; Best prior run: 5.659/182.08, Was #14
Right Lane: Tim Wilkerson Runs 4.838/316.52, Now #2; Best prior run: 7.915/112.36, Was #19

Big pass for the Wilkerson team. They move right into the second spot on the ladder. Worsham smokes the tires about 400 feet and he lifts. Worsham says in the field.

Left Lane: Phil Burkart Runs 5.199/229.86, Now #11; Best prior run: 5.240/226.39, Was #11
Right Lane: Bob Gilbertson Runs 8.446/98.64, Now #19; Best prior run: 7.873/136.66, Was #19

Burkart was on a nice pass until about a thousand feet when it appeared the car nosed over and hurt the engine. He stays in the #11 spot. Gilbertson was two tenths behind Burkart by three thirty and at that point the tires spun very hard and he had to lift.

Left Lane: John Lawson No Time, Now #11; Best prior run: 5.156/297.09, Was #10
Right Lane: Dean Skuza Runs 4.855/315.64, Now #4; Best prior run: 6.563/139.60, Was #17

If Skuza gets in on this run he will bump Gary Densham from the field. Lawson is a no-show for this round. Skuza makes the most of the single and goes all the way to #4. That's means that Densham is out and Worsham is now the bump.

Left Lane: Tommy Johnson Jr. Runs 9.532/84.97, Now #5; Best prior run: 4.859/313.66, Was #5

TJ gets a single in the second session. Johnson's racer started moving around almost at the hit and he lifted before two hundred feet. It was only getting worse.

Left Lane: Tony Pedregon Runs 11.225/66.86, Now #3; Best prior run: 4.849/320.13, Was #3
Right Lane: Ron Capps Runs 4.866/310.91, Now #6; Best prior run: 4.891/308.85, Was #8

Pedregon's Mustang labored off the starting line big time and by two hundred feet it wasn't getting any better. Tony clicked it and coasted to a stop on the track. In the right lane Capps kept them all lighted to the finish and picks up two spots in the field.

Left Lane: John Force Runs 4.790/317.94, Now #2; Best prior run: 4.826/322.42, Was #1
Right Lane: Whit Bazemore Runs 4.748/323.04, Now #1; Best prior run: 4.868/315.49, Was #7

Well, here we go again. Two close friends just out for a Friday night drag race. We start with a staging duel and Force goes in first. Whit quickly follows. At the hit they leave together and stay that way to the finish. Bazemore had a slight lead and holds it to the stripe. I swear these two would run to the sand it they could get away with it. Whit's comment after the race was that Beard had leaned under the body and told him to "shallow stage and hold on". That was the last pair of Funny Cars for the evening and a fitting end to the session. Darn! That was FUN!

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink

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