Gainesville: Tom Hammonds Saturday notes

HAMMONDS HOPES DASHED AT GATORNATIONALS (GAINESVILLE, Fla., Mar. 15, 2008) - - Tom Hammonds hoped to make a home state win a reality, but his hopes were dashed by not qualifying for elimination Sunday competition at the 39th Annual ACDelco ...

HAMMONDS HOPES DASHED AT GATORNATIONALS

(GAINESVILLE, Fla., Mar. 15, 2008) - - Tom Hammonds hoped to make a home state win a reality, but his hopes were dashed by not qualifying for elimination Sunday competition at the 39th Annual ACDelco Gatornationals at the Gainesville Raceway. Coming off of a rain out yesterday, Hammonds only had two qualifying sessions to make it to Sunday's competition.

The second qualifying session would be his final attempt to make it in. Getting off well to lock a round win, he registered a time of 6.771 seconds (205.60 mph) for 21st place out of 29 pro stock car competitors, which was not good enough to make the qualifying field. Tied for the eighth fastest speed for this round, he needed to beat 6.743 seconds to move up from 26th place to secure the bottom qualifying slot.

For the run, Hammonds says he still experienced the fuel delivery problem with the Chevy Cobalt that was thought to be fixed after the first session. The engine shut off in the middle of low gear during both runs.

"This is definitely a low gear problem, because we run the back half of the track as fast as our competitors," said Hammonds driver/owner of pro stock car number 20. "When we fix our fuel delivery problems, our back half numbers will be even better."

The fuel delivery problem was present in the first session, which resulted in a time of 687.7 seconds (205.10 mph) to come in 26th place. To start the run the car failed to respond to acceleration causing hesitation at the line.

"For the first run we had some problems with our fuel pressure, and made adjustments," explains Hammonds. This same problem was knowledgeable during testing in Valdosta, Ga. and with a few adjustments he ran a test time of 6.630 seconds, which was faster than the number one slot of the first qualifying session of this competition.

Compared to last year's competition at the Gatornationals both runs were disappointing; he was able to set personal records by recording a career-best elapse-time of 6.631 seconds and a career-best speed of 209.64 mph.

"We are going to stay here on Monday and test to fix this problem. Once we get this fixed I feel we can really have a competitive car."

-credit: thr

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Series NHRA
Drivers Tom Hammonds