Charlotte: Cory McClenathan final report

MCCLENATHAN REACHES SECOND STRAIGHT SEMIS OF SEASON AT CAROLINAS NATIONALS CONCORD, N.C. (Sept. 14, 2008) -- Cory McClenathan drove the FRAM Top Fuel dragster to a semifinal finish today at the Inaugural NHRA Carolinas Nationals at the brand-new...

MCCLENATHAN REACHES SECOND STRAIGHT SEMIS OF SEASON AT CAROLINAS NATIONALS

CONCORD, N.C. (Sept. 14, 2008) -- Cory McClenathan drove the FRAM Top Fuel dragster to a semifinal finish today at the Inaugural NHRA Carolinas Nationals at the brand-new zMax Dragway @ Concord. It was his second straight semifinal effort and his sixth of the season.

McClenathan's strong result also moved him up into No. 3 in the reset Countdown point standings, and he is now 85 markers behind points leader and teammate Tony Schumacher, with five events remaining.

He began eliminations by defeating Clay Millican with an elapsed time of 3.877 seconds at 314.24 mph, the third quickest run of the round, then made the quickest run of the quarterfinals with a 3.882/314.53 victory over JR Todd.

The FRAM dragster was on another strong run in the semifinals against Antron Brown when McClenathan lost traction at the 600-foot mark and his 4.285/246.03 pass wasn't enough to hold off Brown's 4.243/247.43.

"The FRAM team did a great job with the race car this weekend," said McClenathan. "These guys are trying so hard. It was the most consistent car out there today and it ran great numbers all day long.

"On that last run the track started getting hot and (crew chief) Mike Green tried to slow it down in a certain area, but it just lost traction. It's one of those things where, looking at the conditions, I probably should have been ready to pedal it. I was surprised that it lost traction so far down the track. But, at the same time, when the car gets that far sideways you've got to make one decision, whether to stay in it or get out of it so you can bring it back to the next race.

"We've got a good running race car and a good package and we'll save it and be at the next race and we'll be OK. There's plenty of time points-wise to catch up. But for the conditions and as hot as it was out there today I would say that the Smith family (including Bruton and Marcus Smith) should be very proud of the track they've built here."

The next event for McClenathan and the FRAM Top Fuel team will be the NHRA Fall Nationals in Dallas, Texas, Sept. 19-21.

-credit: dsr

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Series NHRA
Drivers Clay Millican , Antron Brown , Tony Schumacher , Cory McClenathan