BAZEMORE DRIVES MATCO TOOLS RAIL TO NO. 4 SPOT FRIDAY AT ATLANTA COMMERCE, Ga. (April 27, 2007) -- Whit Bazemore likes the Peach State. The 20-time NHRA winner and two-time Atlanta Dragway winner continued his strong performance at his once home...
BAZEMORE DRIVES MATCO TOOLS RAIL TO NO. 4 SPOT FRIDAY AT ATLANTA
COMMERCE, Ga. (April 27, 2007) -- Whit Bazemore likes the Peach State. The 20-time NHRA winner and two-time Atlanta Dragway winner continued his strong performance at his once home track by powering his Matco Tools dragster to the provisional No. 4 qualifying position Friday evening at the Commerce facility.
The veteran nitro pilot and North Fulton High School graduate paced the Top Fuel contingent on Friday's opening run by using a tune-up from champion crew chief Lee Beard to blister the Atlanta Dragway quarter mile in 4.524 seconds at 327.19 mph. Bazemore's elapsed time was four hundredths of-a-second quicker than the second quickest car of the session, Brady Kalivoda.
As the last pair of dragsters to roar down the course late Friday evening, the longtime Georgia resident's dragster suffered a mechanical problem and coasted down track recording no time. On the heels of his 4.524-second burst, Bazemore finished fourth in the 16-car order with two qualifying sessions remaining. He is a two-time Funny Car winner (2002, '04) at Atlanta Dragway, and entered the event ranked fifth in the Top Fuel standings, trailing teammate Rod Fuller by 88 points.
"We can still try and be low on Saturday," Bazemore said. "We run early enough when the track is coming in. I think the track will hold a 4.40 for sure. I feel good. We have a new seat belt restraint system from Bill Simpson and Impact! Racing. Brian Butler and the HANS people helped out too. Everyone is pretty happy with it, including me. We're happy with the way it worked out. It's snugger. It's hard to be more snug than I was, so it's pretty amazing.
"It was a great way to open the weekend. We were a little greedy on Friday night, but we can overcome that. All-in-all, we feel pretty good. It's good that our teammate is low. We have that potential too."