Madison: Gary Densham preview

Densham looking to put on a good show in St. Louis BELLFLOWER, Calif. (June 23, 2005) -- Gary Densham knows that this weekend's race at Gateway International Raceway in Madison, Ill., is one for the fans. The teams will work extra hours this ...

Densham looking to put on a good show in St. Louis

BELLFLOWER, Calif. (June 23, 2005) -- Gary Densham knows that this weekend's race at Gateway International Raceway in Madison, Ill., is one for the fans. The teams will work extra hours this weekend to put on NHRA's only all-nighttime race.

"This is the only time of year that we race under the lights for three days," Densham said. "I can't wait to get that Racebricks.com Chevy Monte Carlo out on the track, but it does make for a long day for all of the teams. We have to get here just about the same time as we would for a day race, just to make sure we're ready, but we stay a lot later than normal.

"The night racing is what makes St. Louis special and hopefully we can all make the fans happy and produce some quick times. The night races are so fun because all the fans can see the flames and our team is pumped up for it."

After a season-best weekend in Chicago just two weeks ago, Densham didn't qualify for last week's race in Englishtown -- a situation he and the rest of the Racebricks team is eager to avoid.

"I've said from the beginning that this was going to be a difficult season because we have a new team, new car and we started behind the rest of the big teams in terms of testing," Densham said. "But every week we see improvement and I'm proud of the way the team has responded to all of the challenges. This is such a competitive class and we've been lucky to have Racebricks and Torco Racing Fuels help us out with sponsorship. The more time we spend on the track, the better we will become."

Densham was the No. 1 qualifier at this event in 2003 but has yet to put his Funny Car into a final round.

"All of our hearts are a little heavy knowing this is the place where we lost (Top Fuel driver) Darrell Russell and the best thing we can do is go out and try our best to think about what a great friend he was to everyone," Densham said. "Everyone is racing with Darrell in mind this weekend."

This is the only three-day night race on the schedule. Pro qualifying for the Sears Craftsman NHRA Nationals starts at 5 and 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Final eliminations start at 4:30 p.m. Sunday.

All of the action can be seen in high definition on ESPN2 starting with qualifying between 12 -- 1 a.m. (ET) Sunday. NHRA 2Day will air at 11:30 a.m. (ET) Sunday followed by the final elimination show at 9 p.m. (ET).

-gs-

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Series NHRA
Drivers Gary Densham