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KURT JOHNSON, ACDELCO CAMARO Z28, not only grabbed the No. 1 spot after two rounds of qualifying with a 6.922-second elapsed time, he demolished the track speed record with the fastest ever Pro Stock top speed of 203.68 mph. He needs only a ...

KURT JOHNSON, ACDELCO CAMARO Z28, not only grabbed the No. 1 spot after two rounds of qualifying with a 6.922-second elapsed time, he demolished the track speed record with the fastest ever Pro Stock top speed of 203.68 mph. He needs only a 201.65-mph run anytime this weekend to back it up and go home with a national top speed record. But he doubts the accuracy of this speed, although NHRA officials confirm it.

KURT: "Even though the track is flat and smooth, it's not possible. Someone at the other end said (jokingly) if you don't think the speed is legitimate, then we don't think the e.t. is legitimate. I said the speed is fine. We have tested here a lot, and this track is like glass. I think it clipped the first beam with the front tire, then got the e.t. clock with thþ front end, which cut 45 inches out of there in the last 300 feet."

ON BEING NO. 1: "Perfect. I finished 14th here last year. Sometimes you test here and you do well and you come to a national event and look like an idiot. It feels good. But Sunday is what counts and hopefully we can do well on Sunday here."

CAN YOU BACK IT UP WITH A 201.65?  "It's feasible.  I never had a speed
record.  It will be a long time before that one would get broken."

ON THE TRACK: "The track just needs more rubber on it. It's got a brand new surface, but down track it needs some nitro cars to lay some rubber down and it will be fast tomorrow."

HOW MUCH TESTING HAVE YOU DONE HERE? "We probably have made 50 runs since the beginning of the year."

WHEN WAS THE LAST TEST? "Right before Richmond. We had some different pieces on the Camaro; we're just trying to get the car to spin (tires) and not shake. We were happy with the first run this morning. As bad as it spun, it didn't shake; it was the quickest car in the right lane. We're kiný of pleased even though we ran a 7.02 on that run."

BOB PANELLA JR. BREAKS PRO STOCK TRACK RECORD IN E.T. AND SPEED

BOB PANELLA JR., PANELLA TRUCKING CHEVY S-10, is No. 1 qualifier with a track record-setting 7.525-second elapsed time at 180.09 mph. This is the first time Panella has reached the 180-mph mark. Randy Daniels holds the national top speed record of 180.16 mph, established in Dinwiddie, Va., last week. Both of Panella¹s numbers are good for track records.

PANELLA: "We definitely made some headway from last year."

DID YOU THINK IT WAS A 180-MPH RUN? "No, I didn't think about the 180 part. I knew I could go 7.57 or .54, the track is so darned smooth compared to what we raced on last week. For some reason this S-10 loves this kind of stuff (hot weather conditions). I don't like to sweat my brains out, but when that scoreboard goes up (with a low e.t. or high speed) it makes it that much better, I can tell you that. Fortunately, we have a lot of hot tracks coming up, like Chicago, and St. Louis. They could very well be the same. I look forward to it from a performance standpoint."

WHAT DID YOU FIND BETWEEN VIRGINIA AND HERE TO INCREASE PERFORMANCE? "We didn't do anything different. We came here and looked over everything real well, made sure everything was as ready as we could make it. It's a smooth race track, what a world of difference. It goes to show you how fast people can go. If Virginia had been as smooth as this track it would have been scary how fast this S-10 could have gone. We have 1000 more feet of altitude here and ran almost as good."

FUNNY CAR: RON CAPPS NO. 4, BAZEMORE NOT IN FIELD

RON CAPPS, U.S. TOBACCO CAMARO Z28, is No. 4 qualifier, 4.991/298.67. SCOTTY CANNON, is No. 7 in his Camaro, 5.045/286.80, JIM EPLER, WWF RACING CAMARO, is No. 9, 5.060/302.01. WHIT BAZEMORE, KENDALL OIL/MATCO TOOLS CAMARO Z28, is not qualified.

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Series NHRA
Drivers Randy Daniels