Richmond: Melanie Troxel final summary

TROXEL GOES TO QUARTERFINALS IN RICHMOND DINWIDDIE, Va. (Oct. 15, 2006) - Driving the Skull Shine/Knoll Gas-Torco Race Fuels Top Fuel dragster at the Torco Racing Fuels NHRA Nationals at Virginia Motorsports Park, Melanie Troxel scored a ...

TROXEL GOES TO QUARTERFINALS IN RICHMOND

DINWIDDIE, Va. (Oct. 15, 2006) - Driving the Skull Shine/Knoll Gas-Torco Race Fuels Top Fuel dragster at the Torco Racing Fuels NHRA Nationals at Virginia Motorsports Park, Melanie Troxel scored a quarterfinal finish after defeating Troy Buff in the opening round.

Troxel launched first in the more-favorable left lane (having qualified No. 7) with a .081 (.000 is perfect) of-a-second reaction time to Buff's .090. She led all the way, crossing the finish line in 4.560 seconds (her quickest of the weekend) at 308.07 mph to Buff's losing 5.747/176.93. Unfortunately, her lap was not good enough to earn lane choice in the next round.

The quarterfinal found her matched up against another Skull Shine-sponsored dragster driven by red-hot J.R. Todd. It looked like it would be close race to the checkers until Troxel wobbled at the finish, losing to Todd with a 4.625/300.40 lap against Todd's 4.541/318.17.

Troxel remains fourth in the Top Fuel standings, 83 behind her teammate Tony Schumacher in third (who lost first round), and 89 short of second-place Brandon Bernstein (lost second round), with two events left in the season. Doug Kalitta padded his lead today to 172 over Troxel with his semifinal finish.

"Track conditions weren't ideal this weekend," said Troxel of the track at which NHRA has not competed since 2000. "The new asphalt at the other end just never quite came around. It made it tough for all the teams. There were a few that managed to keep them hooked up down track, but the majority of us fought it all weekend long.

"Even though we had a fairly consistent race car, we just weren't good enough to win that given round. We'll keep working on it. We had an opportunity to possibly move up in points there and we missed it. So, we'll keep working on it for Vegas.

"Lane choice was really important here. Our 4.56 first round I think would have been good enough to get lane choice against anybody else out there but J.R. Todd. And sometimes that's just the luck of the draw. They're running great right now and we just didn't have enough for them."

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 Doug Kalitta , Melanie Troxel , Brandon Bernstein , J.R. Todd , Troy Buff