Indianapolis: Pontiac Saturday notes

INDIANAPOLIS, September 1, 2001 - Qualifying for the 47th annual Mac Tools U.S. Nationals continued today at Indianapolis Raceway Park. In Pro Stock Truck Mike Coughlin set track records for both elapsed time and top speed in his Jeg's Mail Order...

INDIANAPOLIS, September 1, 2001 - Qualifying for the 47th annual Mac Tools U.S. Nationals continued today at Indianapolis Raceway Park. In Pro Stock Truck Mike Coughlin set track records for both elapsed time and top speed in his Jeg's Mail Order Chevy S-10 to claim the top qualifying position. Coughlin had an elapsed time of 7.473 seconds at 180.52 mph. Bob Panella was close behind in his Panella Trucking S-10 with an elapsed time of 7.480 seconds at 180.16 mph. Rounding out the top five in qualifying were Randy Daniels, John Coughlin, and Taylor Lastor, all piloting Chevy S-10s.

In Pro Stock, Warren Johnson qualified No. 1 in his Pontiac Grand Am with a track-record elapsed time of 6.885 seconds at 200.50 mph. Ron Krisher is second in a Chevrolet Cavalier with an elapsed time of 6.889 seconds at 199.97 mph. Mark Osborne is third in a Dodge Neon RT, Mike Edwards is fourth in a Cavalier, and Tom Martino rounds out the top five in a Pontiac Grand Am. Other Cavalier qualifiers include Kurt Johnson in sixth, V. Gaines seventh, Jeg Coughlin Jr. in 14th and Tom Hammond rounding out the field in 16th.

Whit Bazemore stole the show so far at the U.S. Nationals with the quickest and fastest pass in Funny Car history. On the last pass of the night, Bazemore charged down the quarter mile in his Pontiac Firebird with an elapsed time of 4.756 seconds at 325.69 seconds. John Force is second in a Mustang, Ron Capps is third in the Skoal Camaro at 4.822 seconds and 312.35 mph, Frank Pedregon is fourth in a Firebird, and Capps' teammate Tommy Johnson Jr. rounds out the top five in a Camaro. Jim Epler qualified his 35th Anniversary Camaro 13th and Chuck Etchells qualified his Camaro 15th.

Larry Dixon in Top Fuel qualified the Miller Lite/Chevrolet Dragster fourth at 4.585 seconds at a track-record speed of 327.82 mph. Kenny Bernstein qualified No. 1 at a track-record elapsed time of 4.505 seconds at 323.74 mph.

The Mac Tools U.S. Nationals is the 18th stop on the 24-event NHRA Winston championship tour. Television coverage of qualifying highlights begins 12:00 noon - 2:00 p.m. ET today on ESPN2. More qualifying highlights will air from 1-2:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, Sept. 2, on ESPN2, and the entire Budweiser Shootout for Funny Cars will also broadcast from 8-9:30 p.m. on ESPN2. Coverage of eliminations action begins Monday, Sept. 3, with early rounds airing from 11;00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. on ESPN2, and later rounds airing from 4-7:00 p.m. on ESPN.

PRO STOCK TRUCK

Mike Coughlin (Jeg's Mail Order Chevy S-10) - "We thought we could probably run about the same or maybe a little better that session. We've got a new engine program and the engine's real fresh and seems to be getting a little bit better as it runs. We also have a combination of suspension and clutch that we really like, so we've stay focused on just trying to fine tune it and not change a bunch of things, and I think that's helped us keep some consistency. Coming into the U.S. Nationals we thought we could be for sure competitive, but of course we weren't really sure it would be this competitive. I mean, we didn't know it would run on the pole, but we did expect it to be competitive." No. 1 qualifier - 7.473ET (track record)/180.52MPH

Randy Daniels (Bailey Trucking Chevy S-10) - "We just have to stay consistent with what we got right now and drive awful well to win on Monday. So many guys have stepped up, it's really a tight field - a lot of fast trucks here this weekend." No. 3 qualifier - 7.492ET/179.61MPH

PRO STOCK

Ron Krisher (Eagle One Chevrolet Cavalier) - "Doggone it, we were trying to sneak past Warren (Johnson) there. But we've been consistent all weekend and we're definitely gaining on this thing. We're still struggling with our 60-foot time a little bit, but if we get that figured out we can get back to the pole. This makes us feel real good, especially since we decided to do this thing on our own. We've had the best outing we've had all year so far, so we're not feeling too bad about all us dummies over here. And the track's beautiful - probably the best track we've run on all year." No. 2 qualifier - 6.889ET/199.97MPH

Mike Edwards (Young Life Chevrolet Cavalier) - "We're happy. We made two good runs today, real consistent. Normally you want to be the fastest car, but when Indy comes around the most consistent car usually wins the race, so we're going to work a little bit on it tonight and make some more changes for tomorrow, and we'll see what that does and try to get ready for our setup on Monday. The Chevrolet Cavalier's running awesome, and with Reher-Morrison and Bruce Allen, we're just tickled to death to be a two-car team with those guys. We're looking forward to Monday and hopefully the good Lord will shine on us." No. 3 qualifier - 6.905ET/200.29MPH

FUNNY CAR

Ron Capps (Skoal Racing Chevrolet Camaro) - " Ace (McCulloch), I'm sorry. It was running good, and then it got out there and danced around a little bit and then really took off at the finish line. Then it just lit up like a bonfire, and I got right on the bottles and it put it down pretty good, and hopefully we can save that Camaro body." No. 3 qualifier - 4.862ET/310.63MPH

Jim Epler (United Car Care Chevrolet Camaro) - " We were running good until halftrack, but I don't know, I can't tell you exactly what happened, but I shut it off right after that. Obviously something wasn't right and we missed a big opportunity here tonight, but for all the Camaro people out here, we really appreciate the support we've gotten for the 35th Anniversary Camaro. Hopefully we'll improve tomorrow when it gets a little hotter." No. 10 qualifier - 4.893ET/300.93MPH

-GM Racing

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Frank Pedregon , Jeg Coughlin , Bob Panella , Larry Dixon , Kenny Bernstein , Kurt Johnson , Warren Johnson , Jim Epler , Whit Bazemore , Ron Capps , John Force , Ron Krisher , Randy Daniels , Mike Coughlin , Chuck Etchells , Bruce Allen , Tom Martino , Mike Edwards