Reading: Gary Scelzi Saturday summary

Scelzi powers to fifth in Reading qualifying READING, Pa. (Oct. 9, 2004) - Gary Scelzi's HEMI-powered Dodge Stratus Funny Car is beginning to look like its old self again, as Scelzi blasted down the quarter-mile in 4.796 seconds at 318.77 mph to...

Scelzi powers to fifth in Reading qualifying

READING, Pa. (Oct. 9, 2004) - Gary Scelzi's HEMI-powered Dodge Stratus Funny Car is beginning to look like its old self again, as Scelzi blasted down the quarter-mile in 4.796 seconds at 318.77 mph to take No. 5 in final qualifying for the rain-postponed Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals. He matched Gary Densham's fourth-place ET, but Densham's faster speed of 323.74 mph relegated him to the higher position.

This followed an 8.473/94.48, a 4.864/317.34 and a 4.811/316.75 in the first three qualifying sessions.

"We've just been picking away at it," said Scelzi. "Aside from the first round tire smoker, we're trying to make little steps and little steps, and it keeps reacting. We've just got to smooth it out a little bit at about 100 feet out. We're ready to race tomorrow, and whatever happens, happens."

Scelzi will face his teammate Whit Bazemore (fourth in points) in the first round, which will affect the race for second place in the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series Funny Car championship, as both drivers are vying for that spot. "It's a shame we have to race Bazemore," said Scelzi, "but it's a battle for who can get into second place. How it ends up and who is the winner will probably tell a big tale tomorrow."

As it also turns out, third Don Schumacher Racing teammate Johnny Gray could also be a spoiler and/or helper in the first round, as he faces Del Worsham, who is currently second in the rankings. "Johnny can give us a big helping hand tomorrow," added Scelzi, who is third in points. "That's what we needed a team car for, one that can run, and Johnny can definitely drive and cut a light.

"There's probably a little revenge there between Johnny and Worsham too because Johnny doesn't drive for them any longer. I'm sure the kitchen sink will be thrown at them. It's going to be a big war tomorrow, it's going to be fun to watch."

-dsr-

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Series NHRA
Drivers Del Worsham , Whit Bazemore , Gary Scelzi , Johnny Gray , Don Schumacher