Commerce: Justin Humphreys final summary

Determined Justin Humphreys Working Way Toward Round Wins Justin Humphreys is getting an up-close look at how competitive NHRA's Pro Stock category is. The former Sport Compact and Nopi Series winner has qualified once in his first six...

Determined Justin Humphreys Working Way Toward Round Wins

Justin Humphreys is getting an up-close look at how competitive NHRA's Pro Stock category is.

The former Sport Compact and Nopi Series winner has qualified once in his first six attempts. Although he dislikes being off on Sundays during events, he definitely likes the direction his Knoll-Gas Energy Pontiac GTO Pro Stock team is taking.

Humphreys and his team, led by crew chief Eric Luzinski, formed a partnership with respected engine builder Richard Maskin two races ago. He tested prior to last week's Southern Nationals and Monday to continue his learning process in preparation for the O'Reilly's Midwest Nationals, May 4-6, at Gateway International Raceway near St. Louis.

"We know it's going to take some time," Humphreys said. "We're new out here and don't have any data on running our Pontiac at any of the tracks. We are trying to learn everything on race weekends."

Turning garlic into a breath freshener may be easier.

Pro Stock wins usually are determined by thousandths of a second. Precise quarter-mile runs are required, from the chassis, engine and driver. It takes laps to find the cohesive sweet spot.

"It's all part of the learning curve," added Humphreys, of Monrovia, Md. "We haven't had time to do a lot of testing yet. Once we get comfortable, we'll get back to making smooth runs. We just have to make more runs."

Fate hasn't been Humphreys' best friend, either. He missed the starting lineup at the last three races by a combined 15-thousandths of a second. He was minus-3 at Houston, minus-5 at Las Vegas and minus-7 at Atlanta.

-credit: js

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Series NHRA
Drivers Justin Humphreys