Houston: Mopar Saturday notes

BAYTOWN, Texas (Oct. 28, 2000) - Dean Skuza and the Matco Tools.com/Mopar Parts Dodge R/T Nitro Funny Car grabbed the ninth-qualifying position after Saturday's final NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series qualifying session for the Matco Tools ...

BAYTOWN, Texas (Oct. 28, 2000) - Dean Skuza and the Matco Tools.com/Mopar Parts Dodge R/T Nitro Funny Car grabbed the ninth-qualifying position after Saturday's final NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series qualifying session for the Matco Tools Supernationals at Houston Raceway Park.

Skuza ran a 4.948-second pass at 298.73 mph during the third session and will take on Tony Pedregon in round one action.

"We have really stepped up this weekend," said Skuza, who currently sits ninth in NHRA Winston Funny Car points. "The key to this deal is getting the clutch right and we were able to do that on the third run."

Darrell Alderman, driver of the Team Mopar Dodge R/T Pro Stock effort, collected the 12th-qualifying position with a 6.952/198.25 combination. The three-time NHRA Winston Pro Stock World Champion faces Mark Pawuk in round one.

"The car has been consistent," said Alderman, who has 27 national event victories. "The lanes seem pretty equal out there. We've been working a lot with the clutch."

Larry Morgan and the Dodge Motorsports R/T slipped into the 16th-qualifying position with 6.957/197.08 effort in the third round. The Ohio resident will race No. 1 qualifier Kurt Johnson in round one.

"We barely made it," said Morgan, who advanced to his first semifinal of the season during the Memphis (Tenn.) Motorsports Park NHRA national event. "Kurt is always a tough customer and we're going to have our hands full tomorrow."

Scott Geoffrion and the Team Mopar Dodge R/T suffered various clutch problems and failed to make the top 16. Geoffrion ran a 6.978/197.65. Bo Nickens made his Pro Stock debut in the other Dodge Motorsports R/T, but failed to make the field with a 6.978/197.71 mph run.

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