BAYTOWN, TEXAS, Oct. 29, 2000 - As Doug Herbert reviewed his performance in the NHRA SuperNationals at Houston Raceway Park yesterday, he said, "We ran well all weekend but we had a chance to do better than we did." After getting a lucky break...
BAYTOWN, TEXAS, Oct. 29, 2000 - As Doug Herbert reviewed his performance in the NHRA SuperNationals at Houston Raceway Park yesterday, he said, "We ran well all weekend but we had a chance to do better than we did."
After getting a lucky break in his first-round triumph over nemesis Larry Dixon, Herbert went luckless in the quarterfinals, falling to surprising Bobby Baldwin. Baldwin, the No. 16 qualifier, had luck on his side in his first three rounds as he made it to the finals against Cory McClenathan without running quicker than 4.860 seconds.
"We had nothing but bad luck against Baldwin," added Herbert, who had a big lead off the starting line (.485 to .552) and was pulling away at half-track when the tires shook and smoked. "I felt the shake beginning and was grabbing for the brake when the clutch came in and the tires started smoking and he came by me."
The numbers read: Baldwin, 5.604 at 213 mph to Herbert's 5.748 at 185.23.
Herbert was happy that he stopped Dixon in the opening round despite having to drive with the Snap-on dragster's braking parachute flying fully employed. Herbert was pulling away when Dixon's car smoked the tires. About that time his 'chute came out and he pedaled the throttle several times, stopping the clocks at 5.643 at 215.89 mph to Dixon's 6.091 at 215.07.
"I didn't even know the 'chute came out until I got to the finish line," Herbert said of his first win in six races against Dixon this year.
Herbert and crew chief Larry Frazier worked on the clutch and cylinder heads prior to this event and the result was evident in qualifying. Herbert had consistent times of 4.764, 4.696 and 4.663 seconds. He maintained his hold on ninth place in Winston Series points with 859.
The Snap-on team will be back in action Friday and Saturday at the Texas Motorplex just outside Dallas in Ennis where the rain-delayed O'Reilly Nationals will be completed. Three qualifying runs (10 a.m., 2 and 6 p.m.) unfold Friday with eliminations Saturday.
Next event: Completion of the O'Reilly Fall Nationals, Nov. 3-4, Dallas