Charlotte: Melanie Troxel Saturday report

Superstar Troxel ready to advance, despite four-wide trepidation CHARLOTTE, N.C. (March 27) -- Funny Car racer Melanie Troxel has seen a lot of different things in her time behind the wheel of a racecar. She's the only female in NHRA history...

Superstar Troxel ready to advance, despite four-wide trepidation

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (March 27) -- Funny Car racer Melanie Troxel has seen a lot of different things in her time behind the wheel of a racecar. She's the only female in NHRA history with wins in both Top Fuel and Funny Car and she fills up her spare time as the only girl competing in Pro Mod.

But even the quickest female in motorsports admits she's not quite sure about racing four cars at once, which is happening for the first time in national event history at this weekend's inaugural NHRA 4-Wide Nationals at zMax Dragway.

"There's potential for someone to screw this whole deal up," Troxel said, "which I guess is true whether there's one person in that other lane or three. It just seems much more likely to happen now.

"After four rounds of qualifying, I feel pretty comfortable with the whole staging scenario, and now but I'm very interested to see how it all pans out on race day when the stakes are much higher. It could be crazy."

Troxel's primary goal is to be either the first or second quickest in her opening foursome Sunday morning so she can advance to the next elimination session. Her group includes Ron Capps (4.039 at 310.34 mph), Tim Wilkerson (4.088 at 293.86 mph), and Jeff Diehl (5.347 at 122.54 mph).

"Being four-wide changes the dynamic because you are no longer paired up against just one person, there are three cars to take into account," she said. "While it's always good to be consistent out there on the track, going four-wide might make that even more important now."

Ultimately, Troxel knows she needs to get the most out of her unsponsored racecar every round. In qualifying, her top time was a 4.105 at 303.23 mph, her best ET of the season.

"We know how to go out and run mid-teen numbers," Troxel said. "What we really were trying to do this whole weekend was to run some 4.0s, and we weren't able to get down the track and do that, but there's still time to do that tomorrow.

"The game plan for tomorrow will be to go back to what we know we can run, which is somewhere between a 4.10 and a 4.13, and make the other teams step up and beat us. The first order of business is to get down the track, second is to eat away at that ET a little bit until we get that 4.0. But the main goal is winning rounds."

-source: melanie troxel racing

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Ron Capps , Tim Wilkerson , Melanie Troxel , Jeff Diehl