Las Vegas test report 2006-01-23

WILL AND FORCE QUICKEST DURING NHRA PRE-SEASON TESTING AT LAS VEGAS LAS VEGAS -- Top Fuel rookie Hillary Will and 13-time NHRA POWERade Series world champion John Force were quickest in their respective categories during four days of ...

WILL AND FORCE QUICKEST DURING NHRA PRE-SEASON TESTING AT LAS VEGAS

LAS VEGAS -- Top Fuel rookie Hillary Will and 13-time NHRA POWERade Series world champion John Force were quickest in their respective categories during four days of pre-season testing that concluded Monday at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

NHRA teams utilized the test session in preparation for the upcoming 2006 NHRA POWERade Series season-opener, the 46th annual CARQUEST Auto Parts Winternationals, Feb. 9-12 at historic Auto Club Raceway at Pomona in Southern California. The $1.8 million race, which will be telecast on ESPN2 and ESPN2 HD, is the first of 23 events in the $50 million NHRA POWERade Series.

Will drove her Ken Black-owned, Jim Oberhofer-tuned dragster to a blistering 4.483 second run at 324.83 mph to lead all Top Fuel drivers. Other top performances were turned in by Brandon Bernstein, who clocked the second-quickest time of the weekend with a 4.510 at 326.08 in his Budweiser/Lucas Oil dragster, and Doug Kalitta, who drove his Mac Tools dragster to a 4.553 at 319.98. Two-time NHRA world champ Larry Dixon clocked a 4.593 at 273.44 in his Miller Lite dragster with new crew chief Don Bender calling the shots. Another Top Fuel rookie, J.R. Todd, also was impressive in the Dexter Tuttle-owned dragster by posting a 4.631 at 277.94.

All three John Force Racing-owned cars topped the Funny Car order. Force led the way with his jaw-dropping 4.673 at 327.51 in his Castrol GTX Ford Mustang, while teammates Robert Hight (4.690 at 311.56) and Eric Medlen (4.699 at 321.88) joined him in the 4.6-second zone. Defending POWERade Series world champ Gary Scelzi was fourth-quickest in his Mopar/Oakley Dodge, posting a 4.701 at 325.77, while last season's series runner-up, Ron Capps, drove his Brut Dodge to a weekend-best performance of 4.724 at 317.12. Skoal Chevy Monte Carlo driver Tommy Johnson Jr. also dipped into the 4.7-second range by covering the distance in 4.757 at 326.63.

Bob Panella posted a best of 6.805 in a Chevy Cobalt to lead the trio of Pro Stock cars on the property, while Ryan Schnitz rode his Buell to a 7.089 at 186.85 to lead the Pro Stock Motorcycle contingent.

Pre-season testing continues the next two weeks with the National Time Trials, Jan. 27-29 at Firebird International Raceway near Phoenix and the Last Chance Test Session, Feb. 3-5 at The Strip at LVMS. Two special events will be held for Pro Stock cars on Feb. 4: The Pro Stock SuperBowl at Houston Raceway Park and the Pro Stock Showdown at The Strip at LVMS.

Best runs, listed in order of elapsed time, in Top Fuel at the Nitro Blast-Off at The Strip at LVMS:

<pre> TOP FUEL Psn Num Driver, Home Town, Car Type TT ET TT Spd TopSpd 1 099 Hillary Will, Ypsilanti, Mich., Attac-TFX 4.483 324.83 324.83 2 3 Brandon Bernstein, Lake Forest CA, McKinney-TFX 4.510 326.08 326.08 3 2 Doug Kalitta, Ypsilanti MI, Attac-TFX 4.553 319.98 319.98 4 91 Larry Dixon, Indianapolis IN, McKinney-TFX 4.593 273.44 273.44 5 5 David Grubnic, Ypsilanti MI, Attac-TFX 4.596 322.50 322.50 6 30 JR Todd, Lawerenceberg IN, Agan-TFX 4.631 277.94 277.94 7 104 Clay Millican, Drummonds TN, Hadman-BAE 4.924 222.07 222.07 8 13 David Baca, Brentwood CA, McKinney-BAE 4.941 217.60 217.60 9 72 Mike Strasburg, Lindon UT, Hadman-TFX 5.709 163.79 163.79 10 743 Morgan Lucas, Corona CA, Hadman-TFX 6.496 123.19 123.19 11 1301 Doug Foley, Sewell NJ, McKinney-TFX 7.670 92.00 92.00 12 737 Arley Langlo, Goleta CA, Dragster-TFX 7.681 109.17 109.17

FUNNY CAR Psn Num Driver, Home Town, Car Type TT ET TT Spd TopSpd 1 1 John Force, Yorba Linda CA, '02 Mustang 4.673 327.51 327.51 2 7000 Robert Hight, Yorba Linda CA, '02 Mustang 4.690 311.56 311.56 3 5 Eric Medlen, Yorba Linda CA, '02 Mustang 4.699 321.88 321.88 4 3 Gary Scelzi, Fresno CA, '04 Stratus 4.701 325.77 327.03 5 28 Ron Capps, Carlsbad CA, '05 Stratus 4.724 317.12 322.73 6 503 Tommy Johnson Jr., Avon IN, '05 Monte Carlo 4.757 326.63 326.63 7 6 Whit Bazemore, Indianapolis IN, '05 Stratus 4.824 291.19 291.19 8 180 Mike Ashley, Melville NY, '04 Monte Carlo 4.890 258.52 276.41 9 10 Phil Burkart, Yorkville NY, '04 Celica 4.954 267.48 267.48 10 099 Scott Kalitta, , 5.026 297.42 297.42 11 4 Gary Densham, Bellflower CA, '05 Monte Carlo 5.168 212.16 212.16 12 427 Tony Bartone, Long Island City NY, '05 Monte C 5.199 209.72 209.72 13 999 Allan Middendorf, Millstad IL, Firebird 5.288 260.51 260.51 14 2 Del Worsham, Chino Hills CA, '05 Monte Carlo 5.392 193.77 193.77 15 098 Adam Sorokin, , 5.562 277.26 277.26

PRO STOCK Psn Num Driver, Home Town, Car Type TT ET TT Spd TopSpd 1 712 Bob Panella, Stockton CA, '05 Cobalt 6.805 202.52 202.52 2 701 Ben Watson, Concord CA, '04 Cavalier 6.826 200.83 200.83 3 109 Jim Cunningham, Crownsville MD, '05 Escort 7.071 193.43 193.43

PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE Psn Num Rider, Home Town, Machine TT ET TT Spd TopSpd 1 308 Ryan Schnitz, Decatur IN, Buell 7.089 186.85 186.85 2 1000 Marco Andreano, Monroe Twp NJ, Buell 7.155 182.11 182.11 3 731 Matt Guidera, Rocklin CA, Buell 7.218 180.89 180.89

-nhra-

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Series NHRA
Drivers Clay Millican , Bob Panella , Larry Dixon , Tony Bartone , Del Worsham , Whit Bazemore , Ron Capps , John Force , Gary Scelzi , Doug Kalitta , Jim Cunningham , David Baca , David Grubnic , Gary Densham , Scott Kalitta , Ben Watson , Phil Burkart , Brandon Bernstein , Mike Strasburg , Morgan Lucas , Mike Ashley , Ryan Schnitz , Jim Oberhofer , Doug Foley , Eric Medlen , Robert Hight , Matt Guidera , Hillary Will , J.R. Todd , Marco Andreano , Ken Black , Tommy Johnson Jr.