Houston: Marc White wrap up

BAYTOWN, Texas - Just when you think you have things going your way, sometimes the unthinkable happens. Case in point is Federal Mogul Funny Car driver Marc White at this past weekend's O'Reilly Nationals presented by Pennzoil at Houston...

BAYTOWN, Texas - Just when you think you have things going your way, sometimes the unthinkable happens. Case in point is Federal Mogul Funny Car driver Marc White at this past weekend's O'Reilly Nationals presented by Pennzoil at Houston Raceway Park. White qualified No. 1 with a strong 5.678 elapsed time at 253.04 mph, and had the field covered by over a tenth of a second, but was disqualified in the second round for hitting a finish line cone.

White, from Glendale Heights, Ill., came into the weekend hot off of a strong performance at the rain postponed Mac Tools Gatornationals in Gainesville, Fla., where he put his brand new 2001 Firebird into the 5.70's. After qualifying No. 1, and an uneven amount of cars present, White received a bye in round one, and ran a 5.783 at 251.58 mph. In the second round, White clearly had the win wrapped up, when his Firebird drifted closer and closer to the centerline. Just before the finish line, he hit one of the reflector cones, disqualifying him and giving the win to his opponent Kebin Kinsley, who had problems early in the run and shut off.

"Looking at the way the car was running, we were more than happy with it's performance this weekend," said White. "We accomplished every goal we wanted to as far as performance goes. In the second round against Kebin, it shook a little bit, and I got out of the groove, and I couldn't get back in the groove in time, and tipped over one of the cones, and that was the end of our weekend."

"I guess it had one tire in the groove, and one out," White continued. "I had both hands on the wheel turning it as hard as I could back to my lane, and eventually got off the throttle, but I guess it wasn't soon enough. I guess I should have got off the throttle a little bit earlier."

Even with the tough loss, the Etterman Racing Team is optimistic about the rest of the season, and returning to the postponed Mac Tools Gatornationals, Apr. 20-21, where eliminations will resume in round two, and White will face Jay Payne.

"We have no doubt about the car," stated White. "We know right now we have one of the fastest cars in the country. I just have to take care of the little mental mistake I made, and I think we'll be ok."

Television coverage from the O'Reilly Nationals featuring the Federal Mogul categories will air from 1-2 p.m. (EST) Wednesday, Apr. 4, on ESPN2.

-Etterman Racing

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Kebin Kinsley , Jay Payne