Commerce: Southern Nationals post-race notes

Post Race Notes: 24th Annual Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals presented by Pontiac May 13-16, 2004, Atlanta Dragway, Commerce, Ga. TOP FUEL * Cory McClenathan, from Anaheim, Calif., earned his first victory since Nov. 2002 when...

Post Race Notes:
24th Annual Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals presented by Pontiac
May 13-16, 2004, Atlanta Dragway, Commerce, Ga.

TOP FUEL

* Cory McClenathan, from Anaheim, Calif., earned his first victory since Nov. 2002 when he outran Clay Millican in the final round. It was McClenathan's 28th career victory. He powered his Berryman/Carrier Boyz Racing dragster to the finish line in 4.651 seconds at 320.74 mph, driving past Millican's 104+ Octane Boost dragster, which posted a 4.700 at 315.93 in the close finish. It was the third consecutive runner-up finish for Millican.

* David Grubnic earned his second No. 1 qualifying position of the season and the third of his career, recording low E.T. of the event with his pass of 4.469 seconds in the Kalitta Air dragster to lead the Top Fuel field. That time is the ninth quickest in NHRA history.

* With the victory, McClenathan moved to fourth in the standings, 200 points behind leader Tony Schumacher, who was upset in the first round. Brandon Bernstein was eliminated in the second round, but moved within 15 points of Schumacher in the standings.

FUNNY CAR

* Hometown favorite Whit Bazemore, who grew up in the Atlanta area, claimed his first victory of the season and 16th of his career, defeating teammate Gary Scelzi in an all-Dodge Stratus R/T final round. Bazemore powered his Matco Tools Stratus to a 5.025 at 299.80 to take the win -- his second at Atlanta Dragway -- while Scelzi's Oakley Stratus lost traction at the start.

* Tony Pedregon drove his Quaker State Chevy Monte Carlo to the top of the Funny Car qualifying order for the second time this season and for the 27th time in his career with his track record time of 4.765 seconds.

* Pedregon clocked the fastest Funny Car speed in NHRA history during qualifying, a 329.83 mph blast, but was unable to certify the performance as an NHRA national record by posting another speed within 1 percent as required by NHRA rules.

* With his victory, Bazemore cut points leader Del Worsham's POWERade Series lead to 51.

* Rookie Eric Medlen earned the Motel 6 "Who Got the Light" $1,000 bonus check for his narrow .0044-second victory over teammate Gary Densham in the first round of Funny Car eliminations.

PRO STOCK

* Greg Anderson, from Charlotte, N.C., continued to dominate Pro Stock and distance himself in the standings following his sixth win of the season -- and fifth consecutive. Anderson steered the Vegas General Construction Pontiac Grand Am down the quarter-mile in 6.812 seconds at 203.00 mph, in front of No. 1 qualifier Larry Morgan in the final round. It was Anderson's 22nd career victory and first at Atlanta Dragway.

* With the win, Anderson became only the second Pro Stock driver in NHRA history to win five consecutive races in one season (also Bob Glidden, 1978 and '87). He is only the third PS driver to win five in a row (Ronnie Sox won five straight over two seasons from 1970-'71).

* Larry Morgan ended Anderson's consecutive No. 1 qualifying streak at 11. Morgan claimed his first top qualifying effort in more than 13 years when he powered his Team Mopar Dodge Stratus R/T to a leading time of 6.796 seconds.

* Anderson's victory increased his lead in the standings to a 243-point margin over Kurt Johnson.

* Notable DNQs: Jim Yates, Allen Johnson and Mark Pawuk.

PRO STOCK BIKE

* Angelle Savoie claimed her 32nd career victory by defeating Shawn Gann in the final round. It was Savoie's fifth victory at Atlanta Dragway and her 50th career final round. She rode her U.S. Army Suzuki to a 7.119 at 191.59 to take the win over Gann, who posted a 7.248 at 186.15 on his Gann Speed Suzuki.

* It is the second time in NHRA history that two women have won in the same pro category at back-to-back events. Savoie's Atlanta win followed Karen Stoffer's popular victory at Houston. In 1982, Shirley Muldowney won in Top Fuel at Gainesville, Fla. and was followed by Lucille Lee's Atlanta win.

* Savoie claimed her 35th career No. 1 qualifying award by clocking a 7.121 second run on her U.S. Army Suzuki.

* With her victory, Savoie moved into sixth place in the standings, 49 points behind leader Andrew Hines.

-nhra-

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Clay Millican , Shirley Muldowney , Mark Pawuk , Kurt Johnson , Tony Pedregon , Del Worsham , Whit Bazemore , Tony Schumacher , Gary Scelzi , Greg Anderson , Larry Morgan , Shawn Gann , David Grubnic , Gary Densham , Bob Glidden , Cory McClenathan , Karen Stoffer , Brandon Bernstein , Allen Johnson , Andrew Hines , Eric Medlen