Charlotte: Qualifying notes

CONCORD, N.C. (May 16, 2003) - Randy Humphrey of nearby Cornelius (NC) found en extra .002 seconds to knock Mickey York from the coveted Bud Pole Position at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Humphrey's average speed was 152.992 Though Humphrey resides...

CONCORD, N.C. (May 16, 2003) - Randy Humphrey of nearby Cornelius (NC) found en extra .002 seconds to knock Mickey York from the coveted Bud Pole Position at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Humphrey's average speed was 152.992

Though Humphrey resides just a few miles from the Speedway and considers this his home track, he is always quick out point out how proud he is to be a native of Topeka (KS).

"We were fifth fastest in practice this morning and I felt that we had a chance for the top spot," said Humphrey. "We really struggled when we practiced here a couple weeks ago. We joined a couple other teams at a test session at Atlanta Motor Speedway. That really helped us get the setup dialed in."

"Today, we worked with the front-end geometry and getting the gearing right. I have say a big thank you to all my crew for putting such a good car underneath me," Humphrey added.

The Goody's Dash Series is a place for up and coming drivers to spend a couple years getting valuable speedway experience. The series opened the 2003 season at Daytona International Speedway, but there is a big difference between the two tracks. For one, Daytona is one mile longer then Lowe's. "I like Daytona a lot," commented Humphrey. "But as far as experience and handling is concerned, Lowe's is much more challenging of a track. Those Humpy bumps really throw a tickle at you and make it much more difficult to get comfortable with."

Randy Humphrey went to Daytona with intentions of going after the pole position there, but his efforts came up short. He views winning the pole here at Lowe's Motor Speedway as redemption for his team. "Winning the pole here at the home track is a big deal for us. Oakwood Homes is our sponsor for this race and we are happy to put the car up front with them on board," Humphrey said.

The series' most recent winner, Danny Bagwell, was happy with his car despite qualifying in the 14th starting position. "I think our car will be good in the race," comments Bagwell. "Apparently somebody is better than we are because qualifying shows that. It's not a long race, so we will have to find someone to run with and get to the front."

Jay Godley, another driver that is at home in Charlotte, is driven by more than just a great car this weekend. His father lies in a hospital in South Carolina recovering from injuries sustained in a farming accident. "Things have been a struggle for us," states Godley. "Our motor laid down early in the first practice. We replaced it and lost valuable track time." After qualifying 29th, crew chief Richard Broome called for a rear end gear change. "We will be good for the race," says Godley. "With everything that dad has been through, it has really worn on all of us. But we are going to take what has happened and use it for our motivation to finish well. Our thoughts and prayers are with him."

Going for career win number 40 is Robert Huffman. He is the defending champion here at Lowe's. In fact, he has won the last two years in a row. Huffman qualified his White House Apple Juice Toyota Celica in 6th place. "We are happy about where we are starting the race," said Huffman. "We actually qualified better then I expected to. It is a real tribute to our engine builder Don Miller and the rest of the guys. We have made a lot of changes and it really made a difference. The weather is supposed to be different at race time. I am sure that it will affect us some, but it is just a guessing game. We do our best to factor in how the weather might cause the car to be tighter or looser under certain conditions. This may be our last time around in a Goody's Dash Series car, so to be closing in a 40 wins is a big deal for us. To be in the company of Dean Combs and Larry Caudill and these guys who have been around in this series for a long time. It is a real honor. I would feel really great about reaching that milestone here at home."

Top ten qualifiers: 1. Randy Humphrey; 2. Mickey York; 3. Scott Weaver; 4. Justin Hobgood; 5. Kelly Sutton; 6. Robert Huffman; 7. David Heitzhaus; 8. Johnny Chapman; 9. Eric Wilson; 10. Roger Moser.

-nascar-

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About this article
Series NASCAR
Drivers Kelly Sutton , Jay Godley , Robert Huffman , Johnny Chapman , Justin Hobgood