Drag Race Central - NHRA
Sat, 16 Feb 2013, 16:13 PM

Funny Car Qualifying Notes, Session #3
By David Gerard

POMONA, Calif. - Notes from round 3 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: Todd Lesenko Runs 5.695/126.65, Now #13; No Prior Run
Right Lane: Jeff Arend Runs 6.344/100.92, Now #14; No Prior Run

12:29 p.m. Weather conditions: air temperature 75 degrees, relative humidity 20 percent, barometer 28.99 inches, adjusted altitude 2,456 feet, track temperature 107 degrees.

The track and weather conditions will likely play a big part in ET's and speeds for this session.

No joy for either team, as the slicks on both cars are spinning and smoking right off the line.

Left Lane: Matt Hagan Runs 4.121/308.07, Now #6; Best prior run: 4.097/304.46, Was #6
Right Lane: Gary Densham Runs 4.065/305.91, Now #2; Best prior run: 4.053/307.09, Was #2

Densham shows his power and tune up again with a strong low four pass, close to his Friday best. ...and no trip to the beach this time!

Hagan runs right with him on a strong pass with a little more speed.

They stay in their current positions for now.

Matt Hagan's incremental times: 60ft-0.908 sec., 330ft-2.339, 660ft-3.328/261.78 mph.
Gary Densham's incremental times: 60ft-0.907 sec., 330ft-2.311, 660ft-3.272/266.48 mph.

Left Lane: Terry Haddock No Time, Now #18; No Prior Run
Right Lane: Tim Wilkerson Runs 4.099/306.46, Now #7; Best prior run: 4.221/283.25, Was #11

Haddock's car is a little lazy off the line and then bangs the blower right at the tree.

Wilkerson gets the power to the ground this time and runs right up into the top half of the field with a major speed improvement. Smoke from the engine in the lights, but no oil on the track.

Tim Wilkerson's incremental times: 60ft-0.906 sec., 330ft-2.326, 660ft-3.302/263.00 mph.

Left Lane: Robert Hight Runs 4.111/311.20, Now #11; No Prior Run
Right Lane: Bob Tasca III Runs 7.058/88.64, Now #12; Best prior run: 4.190/305.08, Was #11

Hight's engine goes zing right in the middle of the burnout. The crew picks up the throttle stop off the track, checks out the engine, and sends the car up to the line.

It must not have hurst anything, as Hight's Mustang leaves well and runs straight and true all the way to the current #11 spot with a strong ET and MPH.

Tasca had identical sixty foot time, but smoked the tires right after that.

Robert Hight's incremental times: 60ft-0.910 sec., 330ft-2.346, 660ft-3.325/265.01 mph.

Left Lane: Courtney Force Runs 4.036/318.24, Now #1; Best prior run: 4.071/311.49, Was #3
Right Lane: Cruz Pedregon Runs 7.301/87.44, Now #5; Best prior run: 4.093/296.44, Was #5

A little drama in the left lane again, as Force's Mustang was slow to start. She makes a normal burnout and pulls to the line.

Once again, nothing wrong, as her Mustang powers right on down Broadway into the new top spot on the ladder. She takes the long way down, as the car starts to move steadily towards the wall after the 660' lights and goes through the lights very close to it.

Pedregon won't improve after a strong leave. The tires start to smoke and he is done.

Courtney Force's incremental times: 60ft-0.902 sec., 330ft-2.315, 660ft-3.269/271.08 mph.

Left Lane: John Force Runs 4.238/265.85, Now #14; No Prior Run
Right Lane: Phil Burkart Runs 8.280/62.49, Now #17; No Prior Run

This pair should set the first bump spot.

Force's Mustang is strong until after the 660' lights and then starts to tail wag a little. There is a boom from the engine and the chutes are quickly out. He gets in the field for now.

Burkhart ran a best of 4.239 yesterday, but the right lane bits again with tire smoke right off the line.

John Force's incremental times: 60ft-0.902 sec., 330ft-2.325, 660ft-3.331/240.64 mph.

Left Lane: Alexis DeJoria Runs 7.204/86.19, Now #10; Best prior run: 4.107/302.69, Was #10
Right Lane: Tony Pedregon Runs 6.498/102.10, Now #13; Best prior run: 4.225/248.89, Was #13

Jeff Arend is on the bump spot at 6.344.

Two good initial leaves and then both cars strike the tires.

Left Lane: Ron Capps Runs 4.073/311.92, Now #4; Best prior run: 4.102/314.53, Was #9
Right Lane: Johnny Gray Runs 4.440/201.88, Now #5; Best prior run: 4.085/308.28, Was #4

Great looking pass for Capps to jump into the top four for now. A little better ET, but a little less MPH.

Gray left right with Capps and was right behind him until near the 660' lights, where the tires start to spin. He has to lift.

Ron Capps' incremental times: 60ft-0.890 sec., 330ft-2.320, 660ft-3.293/267.69 mph.

Left Lane: Del Worsham Runs 4.054/310.20, Now #4; Best prior run: 4.101/306.26, Was #9
Right Lane: Jack Beckman Runs 5.374/135.17, Now #2; Best prior run: 4.045/316.67, Was #2

Both cars have a strong leave and run together until after the 330' lights. Beckman's Valvoline/MTS Charger starts to spin the tires at that point and he has to lift.

Worsham is on a strong pass and picks up both ET and MPH to move all the way up to the final top four position of the session.

Del Worsham's incremental times: 60ft-0.901 sec., 330ft-2.307, 660ft-3.270/267.00 mph.

1:01 p.m. NHRA is pushing the teams today for a very quick turn-around between rounds.

Courtney Force is number one at 4.036 and Jeff Arend is on the bump spot at 6.344.

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink

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