BRISTOL, Tenn. -- Final eliminations for the NHRA Mac Tools Thunder Valley Nationals, the sixth of 23 events on the 2002 NHRA POWERadeÂ® Drag Racing Series, got underway today at Bristol Dragway, in the Tri-Cities area (Bristol, Kingsport, and...
BRISTOL, Tenn. -- Final eliminations for the NHRA Mac Tools Thunder Valley Nationals, the sixth of 23 events on the 2002 NHRA POWERade® Drag Racing Series, got underway today at Bristol Dragway, in the Tri-Cities area (Bristol, Kingsport, and Johnson City) of northeast Tennessee.
Former 13 year veteran NBA player turned drag racer Larry Nance, from Akron, Ohio, driver of the U. S. Marine Corps Olds Cutlass, squared off against V. Gaines, from Lakewood, Colo., in the opening round of Pro Stock eliminations today. Nance had qualified 14th, while Gaines finished in the third qualifying position.
Nance was not intimidated in his first elimination round of the 2002 season. He was away first at the green taking an advantage of one hundredth of a second, but today the power of V. Gaines was too much for the Team Marines Olds. Gaines took the win light .035 seconds in front of Nance.
Knowing that he has the ability and car and power to be a future force on the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, Nance's thoughts now focus on the next race.
It's back-to-back weekends for the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series. The next event for Larry Nance and the Team Marines Olds will be the Summit Racing Equipment Southern Nationals presented by Pontiac at Atlanta Dragway in Commerce, Ga., about 40 miles northeast of Atlanta. The event is scheduled for May 2-5, with professional qualifying starting on Friday, May 3.
The Summit Racing Equipment Southern Nationals presented by Pontiac will mark the end of an era for Nance's U. S. Marine Corps Olds Cutlass. Bought when Nance first stated racing, the Cutlass will be parked immediately following the Atlanta race in favor of a new Jerry Bickel-built Chevrolet Cavalier, painted red and continuing to carry the colors of the U. S. Marine Corps.
"We made great strides this weekend in Bristol, especially with this Team Marines Olds," said Nance. "We'll still have the Olds in Atlanta, but we're looking for our success to continue there. Then we're looking to get the new Cavalier right after Atlanta and really do good!"