Las Vegas: Urs Erbacher Saturday notes

Euro champion Erbacher keeps momentum on U.S. soil LAS VEGAS (April 12) -- FIA Top Fuel champion Urs Erbacher of Switzerland successfully qualified for his fourth race in as many tries on the 2008 POWERade Drag Racing Series. The four-time ...

Euro champion Erbacher keeps momentum on U.S. soil

LAS VEGAS (April 12) -- FIA Top Fuel champion Urs Erbacher of Switzerland successfully qualified for his fourth race in as many tries on the 2008 POWERade Drag Racing Series. The four-time European champion peeled off a 4.826 at 303.43 mph in his Marnell Masonry dragster to secure the No. 12 position at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

"It's hot and the track is very tricky at the moment so we're happy to get in the field once again and will begin preparing for Sunday's race," Erbacher said. "There have been many cars struggling to get down the track this weekend and we had our share of worries but the crew got the job done and I'm very happy."

Erbacher made a little history at the last stop in Houston when he became the first European drag racer in 30 years to win an elimination round in NHRA competition. With Las Vegas being his final event before his team packs up and returns to Europe for its championship defense, Erbacher is hoping to leave the States on a high note.

"We were thrilled to win a round in Texas," he said. "Now we'd like to add a few more here and head home with a trophy. No European racer has ever won in Top Fuel and we'd love to be the first. There are so many obstacles to success on this very tough tour but we are getting better each race. I think our time in Europe this summer will be impressive."

As the 12th qualifier, Erbacher gives lane choice to first-round opponent Antron Brown, who qualified fifth with a 4.600 at 324.75 mph. Brown won the last race in Houston and is currently third in the POWERade points. Erbacher is just 70 points out of the top 10 and could make up that deficit Sunday with a semifinal showing.

"For the last two races the No. 16 guy has beaten the No. 1 guy so this proves that anyone can beat any other driver," he said. "The contest is very close. We will hopefully be up for some luck in Las Vegas.

"I wish to thank George Marnell and his company, Marnell Masonry, for their support. He is a great man and a former racer so it's great to give him something to cheer for. He will be on the starting line with us in the morning for sure."

-credit: ue

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Series NHRA
Drivers Antron Brown , George Marnell , Urs Erbacher