Rockingham Saturday Pit Notes

ROCKINGHAM, NC - Notes From the Final Pro Qualifying Session at the IHRA's Holley Spring Nationals in Rockingham, NC from Harley Communications. The third session was cancelled due to rain. Top Fuel Bruce Litton - Litton set a new Top Fuel...

ROCKINGHAM, NC - Notes From the Final Pro Qualifying Session at the IHRA's Holley Spring Nationals in Rockingham, NC from Harley Communications. The third session was cancelled due to rain.

Top Fuel

Bruce Litton - Litton set a new Top Fuel speed record, and placed his Wix Filters car into second position during Friday qualifying. He failed to improve on his previous spot and slipped to the second spot in the program. He will face Shirley Muldowney in the first round.

Nitro Harley

John Mancuso- The Houston, Texas veteran struggled a bit earlier in the weekend, failing to qualify after Friday's first round. He made a timely comeback, however, to grab seventh spot with a second round 6.951/171.69. He is scheduled to face Bill Furr in the first round.

Pro Funny Car

Von Smith - Defending class champion Smith stepped up from his Friday performance to hammer out a 6.015/234.21. That pushed him into the seventh spot. He will face Bunny Burkett in the first round. Scott Weney- Weney failed to improve on his Friday performance and as a result slipped one spot down to eight. He is scheduled to face Sam Leland in the first round.

Pro Modified

Johnny Rocca/Troy Critchley- The non-qualifying jinx that started at Darlington continued to plague the Leesburg, VA team. Their '49 Mercury has a gremlin lurking under the hood that Rocca and crew have been unable to exorcise so far this season. To add to their frustration, for the second event in a row the third qualifying session was rained out.

Mike Castellana- The crew from Mike's Drive-In improved on the track by .009, but loose a spot on the qualifying sheet, dropping from ninth to tenth as Tommy Mauney. The 'Greased Lightning' '57 Chevy is running well this weekend, however, posting a clean 6.423/218.30 in the second, and now last, round. He will meet Tommy Mauney in the first round.

Dale Brinsfield- The Pro Mod bump after the rain-shortened qualifying session was a stout 6.461, and Brinsfield is left on the outside looking in. He was homing in on the last spot with a second round 6.47, but unfortunately, Mother Nature put an unscheduled end to his weekend.

Shannon Jenkins- The 'Iceman' closed out a frustrating weekend in 28th position as he struggled to get a handle on his new Viper's performance. After a strong debut at Darlington, Jenkins ran an off-the-pace 6.60 in round one, and followed it up with a 6.80 in the final round. He failed to qualify.

Ed Hoover- The Darlington winner is showing lots of power again at Rockingham. The Gilbert, SC driver unleashed two clean passes, and placed his '63 Corvette comfortably in the #5 spot by virtue of a strong 6.390 effort in his first day's effort. He will meet Billy Harper in the first round for a rematch of the 1999 World Finals championship round.

Tommy Mauney- The Shelby, NC car builder went from zero to hero in just one round, hammering out a clean second pass of 6.408, good enough to propel him into seventh spot. He was thirty-first after having major problems getting down track in the first round. Mauney will meet Mike Castellana in the first round.

Barney Squires- The combination of a strong 6.461 bump, the second fastest in IHRA history, and the cancellation of the third qualifying session conspired to keep the Majesty Homes Racing '41 Willys out of tomorrow's main event.

Tommy Gray- The 'Undertaker' has added to his fan-favorite pre-race show for the 2000 season, but he's struggling a bit to come up with the horsepower necessary to crack the young season's tough Pro Mod fields. His best run of the rain-shortened qualifying session was a 6.495.

Al Billes- The Canadian hard charger repeated his top qualifying effort of one race ago by thundering to a solid 6.346 in the first round. He hurt the engine in the process, but had the luxury of installing a new bullet, and testing it in the second round. He ran a slower 6.55, but it was a 'freebie', as no one could top his first attempt. He will face Mitch Stott in the first round.

Pro Stock

John Montecalvo- Montecalvo continued his 6.6-second performances as he cranked out a 6.690/207.75. He failed to improve on his first attempt and an improvement by Jerry Yeoman bumped him down to the third position. He will face Doug Kirk in the first round of eliminations.

Floyd Cheek- Cheek encountered severe tire shake in the second session of qualifying. That adversely affected his performance during Saturday's qualifying as he labored to hammer out a 6.859/205.16. He ended qualifying as the 11th quickest and will meet Steve Spiess in the first round.

Gene Wilson- If Wilson ever decides to go bracket racing, he has a bright future. He matched his Friday qualifying attempt to the thousandth of a second as he pushed Charlie Hunt's Probe to a 6.736/206.29. He ended up as the seventh quickest and meet Ed Machecek in the first round.

Chris Holbrook- Holbrook continued his refinement process as he piloted the loaned Moser Engineering Oldsmobile to a quicker lap during Saturday's session. The defending champion hammered out a 6.796/204.51. He claimed the 16th spot and will face Ron Miller in the opening round.

Dwayne Rice- Rice was another of the Pro Stock drivers that made leaps and bounds of improvement by advancing .07 with a 6.715/206.67. He closed out the final session as the fourth quickest. Rice will meet Bob Holzer in the first round.

Wally Stroupe - Stroupe skated for much of the first half of the racing surface. He lifted at the half-track mark and coasted to a 7.779. While it provided a measure of improvement for the Trim Parts-sponsored driver, it fell way short of the qualifying bump spot.

Pro Outlaw

Mick Snyder- Snyder has proven that he's a very consistent driver. The second-generation driver posted a 6.275/218.44 to qualify third in the eight-car program. He faces Neal Parker in the first round.

Mark McElwee- McElwee made a large leap into the second spot. The Powershield.Com-sponsored driver produced a fine effort of 6.256/215.37 to place his Spitzer dragster in the enviable position of second. He will meet Kevin McClain in the first round.

Laurie Cannister- Cannister declined to participate in the first session on Saturday. Despite sitting out the session, the Nicorette/Nicoderm CQ entry remained in the top spot. She will meet Dave Christensen in the first round.

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Series Drag
Drivers Laurie Cannister , Bunny Burkett , Shirley Muldowney , Scott Weney , Johnny Rocca , Bruce Litton , Gene Wilson , Dwayne Rice , John Montecalvo , Ed Hoover , Tommy Gray , Shannon Jenkins , Al Billes , Troy Critchley , Von Smith , Mick Snyder , Steve Spiess