Dallas: Angelle Sampey final report

Sampey's "NHRA Today" Words Too True "If you like us, please don't come up to us and say 'Don't redlight,'" was what three-time NHRA champion Angelle Sampey had to say to the fans on ESPN2's Sunday morning NHRA Today show. The idea is that ...

Sampey's "NHRA Today" Words Too True

"If you like us, please don't come up to us and say 'Don't redlight,'" was what three-time NHRA champion Angelle Sampey had to say to the fans on ESPN2's Sunday morning NHRA Today show. The idea is that thinking about a redlight causes the driver of a knife-edge Pro Stock Motorcycle to redlight, and bringing it up on TV just might have jinxed the champ.

Before that, though, the driver of the Rush Racing S&S powered V-Twin had to put her bike into the field for the O'Reilly Super Start Batteries NHRA Fall Nationals at the beautiful Texas Motorplex in Ennis, Texas. Angelle's qualifying efforts peaked in round 3, when the Rush Racing Buell laid down the quickest lap of the session.

qualifying round 1
7th Angelle Sampey right lane 7.053 at 187.36 mph

qualifying round 2
7th Angelle Sampey left lane 7.084 at 183.59 mph

qualifying round 3
6th Angelle Sampey right lane 7.017 at 187.42 mph

qualifying round 4
7th Angelle Sampey left lane 7.021 at 185.79 mph

Eliminations started off with Angelle nailing a fantastic .003 light on Craig Treble, but then her weekend finished early in round 2.

eliminations round 1
(W) Angelle Sampey .003 7.116 at 182.08 mph
Craig Treble .027 7.151 at 181.94 mph

eliminations round 2
(W) Angie McBride .037 7.103 at 184.42 mph
Angelle Sampey -.055(r) 7.176 at 178.92 mph

"I screwed up second round with a redlight, and I'm not sure why," said Sampey. "That's really frustrating, because if I know what I did wrong, I can fix it. But I thought I had a good light, and when I saw the redlight come up I thought it must have been close. When they told me it was an -.055 red I was just in shock, 'cause I don't think I pushed the tree that hard. I definitely didn't guess at it or choke. I'm a little confused about that, but I'm just gonna put it all behind me and forget it ever happened so it doesn't affect me next race."

"She may have anticipated the light, which is something she doesn't do very often," said George Bryce, Angelle's six-time national champion tuner and crew chief. The bike also suffered a bad vacuum leak on the pass and Bryce admitted the clutch tune-up was off. "I made a few mistakes."

"It wouldn't have mattered if I'd had a perfect light, because the bike didn't run the number," added Sampey. "My shifts were right on point and the bike went really straight, but it was slow."

The Dallas race is the home event for Angelle's bike owner Karl Klement and his family, and the hospitality tent was in full use. "We had a great time in the pits, with hospitality set up for Tucker Rocky and their paint and coatings brand Finishmaster," said Sampey. "We tried out our best to entertain them, but I'm really sorry we didn't get a win for them and for Rush Racing, Doc's Harley-Davidson, XXX Racing Fuel and all our other sponsors."

"After we beat him first round, Craig Treble came over to our pit and talked to all our guests," said Klement. "That was really cool of him to do and we all enjoyed it."

"I think we got through the race without too much damage to our championship fight," said Bryce. "We got the first round win that we needed, and all the leaders battled it out amongst themselves at the top. All our guys are focused and committed to doing the job as best we can in Memphis."

"The points spread is all bunched up," agreed Klement. "Whoever has a good weekend these next three races will determine who'll be champ. Everybody has to stay focused."

"We had a good weekend, but not a great weekend," finished Sampey. "We did OK in qualifying--much better than Charlotte--we just didn't have as good a finish. Eventually we'll have both. We're just gonna keep pushing forward no matter whatever bad luck or mistakes happen. It's getting really frustrating that we haven't won yet, but it looks like the points are really close and we're definitely not out of the Countdown. We can still win the championship and we plan on going to Memphis with that attitude."

Angelle and the Rush Racing team race next September 26-28 at the O'Reilly NHRA Mid-South Nationals presented by Pennzoil at Memphis Motorsports Park in Memphis, Tennessee.

-credit: as/rr

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Craig Treble , George Bryce , Angelle Sampey , Angie McBride