BIG DAY FOR WILK HAS HIM IN THE No. 2 SPOT Tim Wilkerson was one of a handful of drivers who made a full A-to-B lap during Friday's first qualifying session. His 4.272 was mostly made on seven cylinders, and was nothing to crow about, but it...
BIG DAY FOR WILK HAS HIM IN THE No. 2 SPOT
Tim Wilkerson was one of a handful of drivers who made a full A-to-B lap during Friday's first qualifying session. His 4.272 was mostly made on seven cylinders, and was nothing to crow about, but it was good enough for the No. 8 spot after one session, and it gave him the baseline he needed to take a shot at a much better outcome during the night session. He did just that.
Wilkerson's stellar 4.109 put him on top of the Funny Car heap when he ran it, just past the midway point in Q2, and it held for the provisional No. 1 position until the final pair of Funny Cars took their shots. With one half of that pair being Ashley Force Hood, there was ample reason to assume Wilkerson's time would not hold for the overnight pole, and in the end Ms. Hood did take away the top spot, with a 4.105. For Wilkerson, the No. 2 position was nearly as sweet.
"It just means we're really getting a handle on this car, because we ran with the best teams out here and it took a near perfect run to knock us off the perch," Wilkerson said. "They may be looking at their data, seeing what I'm seeing, and if that's the case we both know there might've been more out there tonight. We still spun the tires at the top end enough to hurt the heads a little and shave some speed off the run, so we have to calm that issue down, but it ran strong and it ran all the way, so we're happy.
"On the first pass, lots of people were having trouble getting past half-track, or even past the 330-mark, but we put a hole out at 1.8 seconds and even though it made it to the other end, it wasn't under full power. We felt like we had a handle on what the track could take, and it was biting off a big hunk to go from 4.27 to 4.10, but they seemed like the right moves to make. I guess they were. No shame in being No. 2 behind anyone with the last name Force, or Force Hood."