4/10/2003 - PHOENIX, AZ -- With no rain in sight, the AHDRA season opener in Phoenix started fast for Doug Vancil and the Vance & Hines / Drag Specialties team. The two-time defending IHRA world champion's first pass in qualifying was a scorcher at 6.599 et and 212.39 mph. "It was a good way to start off the new season," stated Doug. After three rounds of qualifying for the top fuel class, Doug was in the #1 position with the run to beat going into the eliminations.
In the first round of eliminations, the defending champion put his Top Fuel Harley on the line and advanced to the second round of eliminations with a time of 7.006 et and 203.25 mph. The next round proved to be solid as well with a pass of 6.778 et and 213.81 mph. Ray Price put an end to Doug's domination in the semi finals. Doug had his best 1/8 mile time of the weekend and was on track to continue his dominance but the bike overpowered the track and he had to let off. Price narrowly avoided the wall and pulled a solid run and went on to win the event.
But, you can bet that Doug and the Vance & Hines / Drag Specialties team will be ready to compete again on 4/25-27 at the Mac Tools Thunder Valley NHRA Nationals in Bristol, Tennessee. The top 14 riders of the Top Fuel Harley class will be running exhibition runs at the NHRA event. ESPN2 will be covering the event and broadcasting qualifying, 10 -11 p.m. (ET), April 26, eliminations (early), 5-7 p.m. (ET), April 27, eliminations (finals) 10:30-11:30 p.m. (ET), April 27. For more information on the event, go to NHRA.com.