SCELZI SETS CAREER-BEST ET, QUALIFIES NO. 3 IN CHICAGO JOLIET, Ill. (Oct. 1, 2005) - Gary Scelzi proved once again that Route 66 Raceway is an awesome race track by establishing a career-best elapsed time of 4.697 seconds in the Mopar/Oakley ...
SCELZI SETS CAREER-BEST ET, QUALIFIES NO. 3 IN CHICAGO
JOLIET, Ill. (Oct. 1, 2005) - Gary Scelzi proved once again that Route 66 Raceway is an awesome race track by establishing a career-best elapsed time of 4.697 seconds in the Mopar/Oakley Dodge Stratus R/T Funny Car to qualify No. 3 for the Ameriquest Mortgage NHRA Nationals.
The Fresno, Calif., native stumbled only once in four qualifying rounds, the third, when he posted a 7.168-second pass at 113.87 mph. The other four runs produced the 4.697/331.28 pass on Friday night in cooler conditions, a 4.723/329.83 in the first and, finally, a 4.729/329.91 in today's last session.
"This is the place, no question about it," said Funny Car points leader Scelzi who is seeking his first Funny Car championship to go with his three Top Fuel crowns. "We were three for four in qualifying, and I ran my career best. Everything is good.
"We tried something in the first round today just to see what we could get away with tomorrow, and we know where we're not going to go - if we get into the middle of the day
"Everything seems to be fine. We may have left a little bit on the table tonight, but you're not going to get the national record here," he said of the chances of a Funny Car ET record being broken here to earn 20 bonus points. "It's not that good to get that close. That rev limiter is still playing a little bit of a factor."
Scelzi's teammate Tony Schumacher did, however, break the national Top Fuel ET record today and backed it up.
Scelzi faces Mike Ashley in first round of eliminations on Sunday and his teammates Whit Bazemore and Ron Capps meet Eric Medlen and Robert Hight, respectively - two of Scelzi's strongest challengers for the championship (along with John Force, who faces Phil Burkart Jr.).
"Big day tomorrow," said Scelzi. "Got a Lot of big match-ups. Hopefully, the Mopar/Oakley Dodge is going to make a big move up in the points.
"I'm ready to go. This is just work."