HAGAN SQUEAKS INTO NO. 14 BEFORE LONG RAIN DELAY IN DALLAS ENNIS, Texas (Sept. 25, 2010) - Racing the DieHard Dodge Charger Funny Car, Matt Hagan was sitting outside of the top 16, let alone the top 12, following two rounds of qualifying on...
HAGAN SQUEAKS INTO NO. 14 BEFORE LONG RAIN DELAY IN DALLAS
ENNIS, Texas (Sept. 25, 2010) - Racing the DieHard Dodge Charger Funny Car, Matt Hagan was sitting outside of the top 16, let alone the top 12, following two rounds of qualifying on Friday for the 25th annual NHRA Fall Nationals at Texas Motorplex, as most teams struggled under hot and humid conditions.
With rainstorms imminent on Saturday, the NHRA ran the pro rounds as quickly as possible, completing Pro Stock Motorcycle, Pro Stock and Top Fuel. Hagan and the DieHard team lined up in the second pairing of Funny Car qualifying as the skies darkened. Hagan took off, began to lose traction, then immediately pedaled it to make it straight to the finish line, posting a 4.291-second pass at 295.72 mph, good for No. 12 at the time. One more pair made it down the track before the rains came, resulting in a five-hour delay. The session resumed and Hagan dropped to No. 14, while the final session was cancelled.
Hagan's Friday attempts produced a 6.195/102.55 (No. 12), and a 7.527/82.74 (DNQ).
"What along day for one run this morning," said Hagan, who is third in Countdown to the Championship points. "I think it was a very smart decision on NHRA's part not to run these fuel Funny Cars in the final session in the dark like that. It makes us drivers feel like they're looking out for us a little bit. Even though I like to run these cars all day, I support their decision.
"Getting into the field was great. Slapping the throttle and having to pedal it got us in. We know the DieHard car is capable of doing better than that, but we just had to back it up and get it down the track," added Hagan, who runs No. 3 qualifier Jeff Arend in the opening round of Sunday's eliminations. It's their 10th match-up of the season (7-2).
"I'm looking forward to running Arend tomorrow. I owe him one from last time. We'll get after it and see what we can do."