Doug Herbert Loses Traction, First-round Match at Pomona Eliminated in First Round of Winternationals POMONA, Calif., February 29, 2004 - Ed McCulloch looked at the computer screen containing different colored lines squiggling across it and ...
Doug Herbert Loses Traction, First-round Match at Pomona
Eliminated in First Round of Winternationals
POMONA, Calif., February 29, 2004 - Ed McCulloch looked at the computer screen containing different colored lines squiggling across it and shook his head.
"The drive shaft was spinning too fast and we smoked the tires at the starting line," the Snap-on Racing Top Fuel dragster tuner said, summing up his boss Doug Herbert's loss to Larry Dixon in the opening round of Sunday's NHRA season-opening K&N Filters Winternationals at Pomona Raceway.
When Herbert felt the tires start to spin, he pedaled the throttle three times in a vain attempt to find traction while Dixon, whose tires also smoked, hooked up first and drove off to the win in 5.832 seconds at 247.20 mph. The blower pulley on Herbert's dragster broke and he coasted to the finish line in 17.888 seconds at 49.19 mph.
Prior to that run, Herbert and McCulloch felt they could be contenders for the race win. He had consistent qualifying runs and qualified ninth, 4.568 at 325.22 mph, to Dixon's No. 8 4.561 at 319.74 mph.
"It was a disappointing way to start the year," said Herbert. "We ran pretty well in qualifying and we made some steps in the right direction in terms of tune-up and not hurting parts. We are going in the right direction, but anytime Dixon makes a mistake we need to take advantage of it."
McCulloch said he took power away from the engine, "but it was no where near enough. It certainly wasn't our intention to give him the race."
Herbert was consistent during qualifying, posting times of 4.620, 4.654, 9.256 and 4.568 seconds, the latter time putting him ninth in the 16-car starting field. "We were happy with that," he commented.
Herbert comes out of the Winternationals with 32 points and finds him in a four-way tie for ninth place, going into the Checkers Schuck's Kragen Nationals, Friday through Sunday, at Chandler, Ariz.