GM Racing New England summary

Gary Gardella Wins Second Straight in All-Chevy Cobalt Final Over Jason Hunt Sixth Straight Championship Round Battle Between the two Ecotec-Chevrolet Drivers EPPING, N.H., Aug. 5, 2007 - The old saying when it rains it pours is starting to ...

Gary Gardella Wins Second Straight in All-Chevy Cobalt Final Over Jason Hunt

Sixth Straight Championship Round Battle Between the two Ecotec-Chevrolet Drivers

EPPING, N.H., Aug. 5, 2007 - The old saying when it rains it pours is starting to become an apt description of Gary Gardella's racing fortunes over the last month. At New England Dragway on Sunday, the Red Bull Chevy Cobalt driver defeated Jason Hunt in the all-Chevy final round of the Pro Outlaw FWD category at the NOPI New England Nationals to capture his second straight victory on the NDRA circuit.

"This Chevrolet is so much fun to drive," said Gardella. "We've worked on our Red Bull Cobalt all year to get it to this level and now it's starting to run up to its potential. It seems like every time I look up, though, Jason's over in that other lane, and to be able to get two in a row on those guys isn't easy. It's quite an accomplishment for this race team to get to where we are now in the season."

Sunday's final round match-up marked the sixth consecutive national event that the two Chevy Cobalt drivers have faced each other for the race victory (combining both NHRA and NDRA contests) and it was the second time this year that the New Jersey resident has come away the winner.

Gardella qualified his Red Bull Chevrolet Cobalt in the No. 1 position after running 7.506 seconds at 200.35 mph. Hunt's Matco Tools Chevrolet was slotted in the No. 2 spot. In round one, Gardella earned lane choice for the finals by driving his Ecotec-powered Chevrolet to a 7.459 e.t. at 199.67. In the championship round against Hunt, Gardella's Red Bull Chevrolet launched first and continued to pull away crossing the finish line in 7.401 seconds at a speed of 202.03 mph. Hunt's Cobalt followed with a 7.599 second run at 199.05 mph. Gardella's margin of victory was .223 of a second.

"When we came into this stretch of races beginning with Las Vegas last month, we knew we needed to start going some rounds and showing some consistency," said Gardella. "At Vegas, and then the win in Milan (Mich.), and here today, our Red Bull Chevrolet came through just the way we had hoped. Now we're running over 200 mph and winning races. This couldn't have come at a better time since we're coming down to crunch time as far as the season is concerned."

Chevy Cobalt driver James Farrer captured his first career win in Pro 4 Cylinder, the same category that his car owner, Gary Gardella dominated in 2005. Farrer's Ecotec-powered Chevrolet qualified in the No. 1 position with an 8.557 e.t. at 166.68 mph. He defeated Rui Lopes in round one running 8.215 seconds at 171.45 mph, Gary Wong in round two with an 8.292 e.t. at 171.88 mph and Kevin Francisco in the finals with an 8.430 second run at 158.69 mph.

In Turbo Street, Brian Ballard rolled to a final-round appearance before losing to Jonathan Reynolds. Ballard qualified his K & N Filters Chevrolet in the No. 2 spot running a 9.553 second elapsed time at 155.19 mph. He defeated Jason Greenewalt in round one (9.560ET/154.90MPH), and Gary Eng in round two (9.637ET/153.56MPH) to advance to the championship heat.

Don Nase Jr. won the Pro Extreme category in the GM Ecotec-powered dragster for the sixth time this year. Nase qualified No. 1 with a 6.742 e.t. at 194.24 mph.

-credit: gm racing

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