Richmond: Gary Scelzi final summary

Scelzi out in Richmond opening round DINWIDDIE, Va. (Oct. 15, 2006) - Reigning NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series Funny Car champion Gary Scelzi lost the opening round of eliminations today at the rescheduled Torco Racing Fuels NHRA Nationals at...

Scelzi out in Richmond opening round

DINWIDDIE, Va. (Oct. 15, 2006) - Reigning NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series Funny Car champion Gary Scelzi lost the opening round of eliminations today at the rescheduled Torco Racing Fuels NHRA Nationals at Virginia Motorsports Park.

Under cool and sunny conditions, which warmed up from earlier temperatures in the high-30-degree range, the driver of the Mopar/Oakley Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car took off with a quicker .087 (.000 is perfect) reaction time to his opponent Jim Head's .113, but lost traction early, slowing to a 7.478-second pass at 109.26 mph. Head has his own problems, as the engine in his car blew up before the finish line. He was ahead at that point, so he won the round with a 5.282/205.13.

"We got our ass kicked," said Scelzi, who remains seventh in the Funny Car point standings with two events remaining in the 2006 season. "We slowed everything down to make sure we would go down the race track and Zippy (crew chief Mike Neff) felt pretty confident that it should run a mid-4.80 and it went out there and it just got fast, and kept getting faster. It shook (the tires) and then knocked them off. I tried pedaling it. I saw Head blow up, but he was so far out that I pedaled it three times. When it smokes that many times you're not going to recover. The tire speed is just too fast.

"So were going to stay here tomorrow (to test) and hopefully we're going to run this thing until we figure out what's wrong with it.

"We regularly test and then all of a sudden it does it what it's supposed to do and this weekend it's not. It's throwing us a bone, but it's not repeating. If you're going to run in this class and run for a championship, you'd better repeat and you'd better run fast, because I don't care who it is, from 1 to 16, they're going to saw you off if you don't bring your A-game. So, we're trying to bring our A-game; it's just not working.

Next up is ACDelco Las Vegas NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Oct. 27-29.

-credit: dsr

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Jim Head , Gary Scelzi , Mike Neff