Norwalk: Cory McClenathan Saturday notes

MCCLENATHAN NO. 2 IN NORWALK QUALIFYING NORWALK, Ohio (June 28, 2008) -- FRAM Top Fuel dragster driver Cory McClenathan qualified in No. 2 for the second time in the past four races at the Second Annual NHRA Nationals in Norwalk, Ohio....

MCCLENATHAN NO. 2 IN NORWALK QUALIFYING

NORWALK, Ohio (June 28, 2008) -- FRAM Top Fuel dragster driver Cory McClenathan qualified in No. 2 for the second time in the past four races at the Second Annual NHRA Nationals in Norwalk, Ohio. McClenathan didn't make his first qualifying attempt until Saturday after the cancellation of Top Fuel and Funny Car qualifying on Friday due to water seeping onto the racing surface after recent rain storms in the area.

McClenathan recorded a 4.631-second elapsed time at 301.81 mph in the second qualifying round today to nail down No 2. His first run was an off-pace 9.482/84.66 (No. 13).

"I think everybody out here hates when you have to sit out Friday knowing you only have two possible runs to make the show on Saturday," said McClenathan, who entered the race sixth in the Top Fuel point standings. "The rain threatened us today, but the NHRA Safety Safari did a great job prepping the track with the help of the track guys here at Norwalk. Obviously they did a great job and we were able to get down the track on our second run.

"We were a little aggressive on the first run, but we came back and ran a 4.63, and I'm really happy with that for a second run. The No. 1 qualifier was only a 4.629, so it was very close. It puts us in a good position for tomorrow. We'll be running Morgan Lucas in the first round and I know they can step up and run well any time."

McClenathan, who has reached the semifinals at two of the last three events, realizes how important it is to keep winning rounds on Sunday with just six races remaining until the cutoff for the top 10 in the Countdown to the Championship following the U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis Labor Day weekend.

"We just can't take anybody lightly," McClenathan said. "I need to go out there and do my job on the tree and the guys need to do their job on the race car. This FRAM Top Fuel dragster has been going rounds and we just need to continue and keep accumulating points until Indy and then see where we get set."

McClenathan will enjoy lane choice over No. 15 qualifier Morgan Lucas during first round of eliminations on Sunday.

-credit: dsr

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Series NHRA
Drivers Cory McClenathan , Morgan Lucas