SCELZI OUT IN MEMPHIS FIRST ROUND MEMPHIS, Tenn. (Aug. 20, 2006) - Gary Scelzi was glad to leave the extreme Memphis heat after being ousted by his Don Schumacher Racing teammate Mike Ashley in the first round of Funny Car eliminations at the ...
SCELZI OUT IN MEMPHIS FIRST ROUND
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (Aug. 20, 2006) - Gary Scelzi was glad to leave the extreme Memphis heat after being ousted by his Don Schumacher Racing teammate Mike Ashley in the first round of Funny Car eliminations at the O'Reilly NHRA Mid-South Nationals today.
No. 8 qualifier Scelzi, driver of the Mopar/Oakley Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car, met up with No. 9 Ashley in the opening stanza under a hot sun, a track temperature of 140 degrees, and high hopes of a solid performance. Scelzi launched first with a .093 (of a second) reaction time (.000 is perfect), to Ashley's .115. Both cars lost traction, but it was Ashley first at the finish stripe, with a 5.147-second pass at 274.66 mph to Scelzi's losing 5.226/276.18. Ashley's edge over Scelzi was .0571 of a second.
Scelzi remains seventh in Funny Car points, four markers behind Tommy Johnson Jr. in sixth, who also was eliminated in the first round today.
"We ran the fourth quickest run of that session," explained the reigning Funny Car champion. "I think Mike probably ran the third quickest," he laughed. "It's unfortunate. These are just brutal conditions. We did not want to smoke the tires like almost every car did in Top Fuel and Funny Car.
"It went down there and it started spinning (the tires) at about 800-900 feet and it just kept getting worse. It put a cylinder out and we were just all done. There was nothing you could do.
"I'm glad to be out of this hell hole. Nothing about this place I like except leaving it. That's what we're going to do. We'll head to Indy (O'Reilly Raceway Park in Cleremont, Ind.) and start testing (this week)."
Next up is the prestigious U.S. Nationals at O'Reilly Raceway Park in Cleremont, Ind., on Aug. 30-Sept. 4.
NOTE: As of 6 p.m. CT, the event remains under a rain delay following near completion of the first round of eliminations. One pair of Pro Stock Motorcycles are left to run.