Semifinal Finish has Anderson Smiling Leaving Las Vegas Summit Racing Pro Stock driver Greg Anderson came into Sunday's final eliminations of the SummitRacing.com NHRA Nationals intent on capturing his first win of the 2010 season, knowing...
Semifinal Finish has Anderson Smiling Leaving Las Vegas
Summit Racing Pro Stock driver Greg Anderson came into Sunday's final eliminations of the SummitRacing.com NHRA Nationals intent on capturing his first win of the 2010 season, knowing exactly how he would commemorate the event. First, he would celebrate in the winner's circle with the numerous representatives from Summit, after which he would drive to a rehabilitation center in north Las Vegas to present the trophy to his team owner Ken Black, who is recovering from a stroke suffered last December.
Starting from the fifth position, things went according to plan in the opening stanza as Anderson tied for the second-quickest time with his 6.738-second, 204.73 mph pass to eliminate Vinnie Deceglie. Ironically, his second round opponent was Allen Johnson, who had matched Anderson's time and gained lane choice with a faster top speed. Fortunately, the KB Racing driver used another solid 6.763-second, 204.73 mph run to trailer his rival for the 450th elimination round win of his career and advance to the semifinals.
The final obstacle between Anderson and his ninth final round appearance at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway was points leader Mike Edwards, who has dominated the class in the early part of the season. Although Anderson was more than up to the challenge, posting the quickest time of the day in the less-preferred right hand lane, his 6.752-second, 204.98 mph effort fell just shy of his opponent's 6.735 sec., 205.16 mph run. Although naturally disappointed, the three-time champion was pleased with his team's performance.
"This Summit Racing team raced better today than we have all season," said Anderson. "Naturally, we would have loved to come out here today and won in front of everyone from Summit, as well as Ken's family and friends. We certainly gave it our best, and even though we came up a little short, there are still a lot of positives we can take from this weekend.
"Although we still have some ground to make up, I believe we've closed the gap on Mike (points leader Edwards), and as long as we can have respectable race cars on every run, we'll have a chance to win races. I see us taking a major step forward here, so we're going to leave here with smiles on our faces, because, as far as I'm concerned, this is the best weekend we've had all year, regardless of the fact that we didn't win the race."
Anderson was also quick to give credit forthe KB Racingteam's showing to his owner.
"We've had a tough season in 2010 with more down periods than up, and have been beating ourselves up mentally because we haven't been performing like we know we should," said Anderson. b^0x001cA lot of that has to do with not having our boss man Ken Black here with us, because he's always been able to keep our minds straight. That's what we've missed in the first six races, and why we need him back out with us.
"Fortunately, we were able to come out to Las Vegas and see him, which did us both a lot of good. We cheered him up and he got our heads right, allowing us to race better on what so far was our biggest weekend of the year, racing in a Summit-sponsored race in Ken's back yard. The good news is that, thanks to him, we know what the formula is -- you have to keep your mind straight, so hopefully we can use that to do a better job from here on out."
-source: kb racing