Gainesville: Hillary Will final report

Hillary Will, KB Racing, LLC Top Fuel dragster -- No. 11 qualifier, advanced to the semifinals Hillary Will and the KB Racing, LLC team march to the semifinals in Gainesville GAINESVILLE, Fla., (March 17, 2008) -- Yesterday, at the third ...

Hillary Will, KB Racing, LLC Top Fuel dragster -- No. 11 qualifier, advanced to the semifinals

Hillary Will and the KB Racing, LLC team march to the semifinals in Gainesville

GAINESVILLE, Fla., (March 17, 2008) -- Yesterday, at the third event of 24-event NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, the ACDelco NHRA Gatornationals at Gainesville Raceway in Gainesville, Fla., Hillary Will, driver of the 8,000-horsepower KB Racing, LLC Top Fuel dragster, made her first semi-final appearance since the event in Englishtown, N.J., last June.

Will qualified her rail in the No. 11 spot (4.624 seconds, 314.75 mph) for Sunday's 16-car eliminations. She rolled to the starting line in round one to race No. 6 qualifier Cory McClenathan. On paper, McClenathan was favored to get the win, but Will had her team changed those plans in 4.582 seconds to set low elapsed time of the opening round and to defeat McClenathan's losing effort of 4.619 sec. In the second round, Will and her KB Racing, LLC team stood tall once again with another upset victory over No. 3 qualifier Rod Fuller, 4.694 sec., 316.60 mph to 5.305 sec., 200.32 mph.

In the semifinals, Will and Brandon Bernstein gave the enormous crowd of drag racing fans in Gainesville a great side-by-side race down the famed quarter-mile drag strip. Both racers and their cars charged down the track with nearly flawless runs, but Bernstein was able to get to the finish line strip about 12 ft. further ahead to get the narrow victory, 4.672 sec., 325.14 mph to 4.666 sec., 322.73 mph.

"What a great weekend for my KB racing, LLC team," Will, a 27-year old native of Fortuna, Calif., said. "My team works so hard to give me a great car to drive, and that was very apparent today. I can't say enough about how much I appreciate everyone on my team and their dedication to winning. We've been struggling to get round wins this year, so this was just what we needed."

Will and her KB Racing, LLC team, led by crew chief Jim Oberhofer, are testing Monday in Gainesville in hopes of fine-tuning their already very consistent race car. Will added, "We're going to make a couple laps and try a few small things. Our car has been incredibly consistent so far this season, so we just want to see if we can maybe tweak a couple of things."

Will is currently in 7th place in POWERade Top Fuel championship points (162). She is 143 points out of 1st place.

Will continued to maintain her foothold as the fastest female in the history of NHRA drag racing by running the fastest speed of the weekend (tie) in Gainesville, 330.63 mph (round one). At the first two events of this season, she set the track record for speed at both Phoenix Int'l Raceway (334.32 mph) and at the Auto Club Raceway at Pomona (Calif.) (334.56 mph). Her booming blast in California established her as the fastest female in the history of the sport.

-credit: km/kbr

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Series NHRA
Drivers Cory McClenathan , Brandon Bernstein , Jim Oberhofer , Rod Fuller , Hillary Will