Budds Creek Thursday qualifying pit notes

BUDDS CREEK, MD. - Thursday Pit notes from Harley Communications at the IHRA President's Cup Nationals. Pro Funny Car Von Smith - The defending World Champion from Oak Ridge, Tenn., was in the first pair of floppers to attack the Maryland ...

BUDDS CREEK, MD. - Thursday Pit notes from Harley Communications at the IHRA President's Cup Nationals.

Pro Funny Car

Von Smith - The defending World Champion from Oak Ridge, Tenn., was in the first pair of floppers to attack the Maryland International Raceway racing surface. The Atomic City-sponsored driver was in conservative mode as he danced around the racing surface 6.065/236.15. He currently ranks as the seventh quickest among the 20-entries in attendance.

Scott Weney - The current points leader went for kill on his first lap and the lengthy burnout confirmed it. The Royersford, Pa.-based drag racer encountered severe tireshake in the Sheetz Racing Corvette. He aborted the run and coasted to a 14.402/55.48. He stands as the first alternate going into the second day of qualifying.

Pro Modified

Troy Critchley/Johnny Rocca - Critchley didn't have the opportunity to make a lap in the first session for the second event in a row. At Rockingham, a dead battery was the culprit. This time a pin escaped from the clutch pedal and that prevented the team from putting the lumbering 1949 Mercury out of reverse into the forward gears.

Tommy Gray - Gray made his first appearance after splitting with partner Pete Crouse. The Baltimore, Md.-based driver of the Undertaker 1953 Corvette is still trying to find the right combination for nitrous entry and cranked out a 6.460/206.64. He is currently ranked as the first alternate.

Shannon Jenkins - The defending World Champion from Tuscaloosa, Ala., couldn't have asked for a better opening run than the one he had in Thursday first session. He cranked out a 6.402/221.34 to settle into the seventh position.

Ed Hoover - The Gilbert, SC.-based Hoover continues to try and find the same combination that propelled him to the season-opening win in Darlington. The veteran driver for Paul Trussell's '63 Corvette produced a 6.420/220.98. He currently resides in 12th position.

Dale Brinsfield - While most of the team struggled with serious tireshake, Greensboro, NC.-based veteran Dale Brinsfield delivered a clean hard pass in his first qualifying attempt. The former "Sportsman of the Year" award winner sped to a 6.425/220.33. He ranks one spot behind Hoover at 13th.

Mike Castellana - Castellana admitted that he didn't feel so bad about missing his set-up call in the first qualifying session after watching a multitude of other drivers struggle. He aborted his run and coasted to a 10.825 and bypassed the scales, therefore disqualifying the lap.

Steve Cossis - The CompetitionPlus.com-sponsored entry of Cossis launched hard on his first qualifying attempt. In conversations with Cossis, he admitted that he didn't bring enough power to the table on the first run and was basically in conservative mode. The run wasn't a total loss as he used a 6.454/217.98 to land on the bubble after the first session.

Al Billes - The Canadian-based Billes brought plenty to the table on the first qualifying lap. However, the veteran supercharged driver confided that he still has some more room for improvement. He currently stands as the fifth quickest with a 6.365/224.77.

Tommy Mauney - Mauney and car owner Roy Singleton were still smiling after their second quickest lap in Rockingham. However, Budds Creek provided a different set of circumstances as Mauney encountered severe tire shake and aborted his attempt, slowing to a 15.013. Pro Stock

Chris Holbrook - The defending World Champion from Livonia, MI., found a good baseline on his opening lap. He found his way into the field on his first lap with a 6.769/207.94. Holbrook currently holds onto the 11th spot.

John Montecalvo - Montecalvo's first lap was a throwaway. The Citgo-sponsored driver from Center Moriches, NY., launched with the wheels up and the rear of his car danced around. He wisely chose to lift and coasted to a 9.225, which amazingly puts him in the 15th spot.

Gene Wilson - The son of professional fisherman Orlando Wilson absolutely had a tremendous lap in the first round and was the class of Pro Stock for the first attempts as he blazed to the early lead in qualifying with a 6.678/209.07. He eventually slipped into the second spot by the end of the session.

Floyd Cheek - Cheek admitted on the maiden voyage of his Cougar that he set it up way too soft. He fell into the same trap during the first lap at Budds Creek as the car labored hard and only came up with a 6.901/202.73. He's presently in the 12th position.

Dwayne Rice - The Grove City, Ohio-based excavator was in his "relentless pursuit" mode for the first lap. An IHRA announcer made the assessment that he covered 1,500 feet in a quarter-mile en-route to a 6.722/208.68. He currently ranks as the seventh quickest now.

Angelo Alesci - The Cleveland, Ohio-based Alesci could have asked for a straighter pass than he achieved during the opening session. Alesci went through the traps with a 6.762/206.76. He currently stands in the ninth position.

Pro Outlaw

Laurie Cannister - Cannister provided an excellent photo op for the media on her first qualifying lap. Paired opposite of her points rival Mick Snyder, the Nicorette/Nicoderm CQ-sponsored driver carried the wheels high in the air and stopped the clocks with a 6.130/208.05. She resides as the top qualifier presently.

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Series Drag
Drivers Laurie Cannister , Scott Weney , Johnny Rocca , Gene Wilson , Dwayne Rice , Angelo Alesci , John Montecalvo , Ed Hoover , Tommy Gray , Shannon Jenkins , Al Billes , Troy Critchley , Von Smith