CHEVROLET NOTES AND QUOTES PROLONG SUPER LUBRICANTS NORTHWEST NATIONALS NHRA WINSTON DRAG RACING SERIES SEATTLE INTERNATIONAL RACEWAY SATURDAY, AUGUST 1, 1998 FUNNY CAR -- CAMARO Z28 -- FINAL QUALIFYING WHIT BAZEMORE, TEAM WINSTON CAMARO,...
CHEVROLET NOTES AND QUOTES PROLONG SUPER LUBRICANTS NORTHWEST NATIONALS NHRA WINSTON DRAG RACING SERIES SEATTLE INTERNATIONAL RACEWAY SATURDAY, AUGUST 1, 1998
FUNNY CAR -- CAMARO Z28 -- FINAL QUALIFYING
WHIT BAZEMORE, TEAM WINSTON CAMARO, made it into the show in the final qualifying round; he's No. 11 qualifier, 5.367/263.23. Bazemore is the defending Funny Car champion here.
BAZEMORE: "I was really confident going up there, because, like I told the guys, I said, 'look, give me 60 feet and I'll do the rest.' But we did find a few things that we didn't like and we addressed those on the Camaro and so I felt pretty confident. But we were still kind of in the gray area, but you can't worry about it, you just have to go up there and do the best job you can do. The Camaro was a real handful, obviously; I had to pedal it three times. So I thought we ran a 5.50 or something and Wilkerson got us. I thought for a good minute that we didn't qualify, so I was concerned with that, but then they said he hit the cones. Then we had to wait to see what cones he hit. If he hit the finish line cones it would have negated our time. But he hit the centerline half track and got the cones there, so we were in. We were happy about that."
"You hate to make the effort the whole team makes and come out short. We're in a critical point of the season in terms of trying to impress prospective sponsors fo next year, and we're trying to get back into the thick of the points chase. The Camaro proved its worth on that run because I was way out in the marbles, and it stuck. I had to pedal it a little bit, but it stuck, and that's why we have the Z28."
RON CAPPS, COPENHAGEN CAMARO Z28, also had a nail-biter, as he was on the bump before the final round. He pulled out a No. 7 qualifying spot, 5.168/279.93.
CAPPS: "We were third quickest of the round. We found a problem with the fuel pump on the car and it threw Roland (Leong, crew chief) a curve. He was chasing that problem the whole weekend. We found it before this run and it's kind of like a one-shot qualifying deal for us. Roland is not one to just run a 5.40. We go out there to run like we would run on Sunday. To run a 5.16 in the heat of the day and to be third quickest of the round is pretty cool."
CHUCK ETCHELLS, KENDALL/MA MA ROSA'S PIZZA/SUPERWINCH CAMARO Z28, is No. 4 qualifier, 5.094/282.92. Etchells posted the lowest elapsed time of the day in today's first session. With Force qualifying on the "pole" Etchells drops to second place in the Winston Championship, two points behind.
ETCHELLS: "Our first run was the quickest of the day in Funny Car, just ahead of Cruz's 5.10. In all, we made two solid runs today, and went down both lanes. I'm not sure how important lane choice will be tomorrow, but our Camaro Z28 seemed to run better in the left lane today. It will be up to the General (co-crew chief Tim Richards) to decide which one we'll run in tomorrow. Our side of the ladder looks pretty darn favorable -- the only other car in the top five on our side is John (Force) and we wouldn't see him until the semis, if we get that far. It's good to see those other guys (Cruz and Tony Pedregon, Whit Bazemore and Ron Capps) bunched up on the other side, we've been looking over our shoulder at them all year. We're due for some luck on this swing, we didn't get any in Denver or Sonoma, so maybe tomorrow will be our day."
PRO STOCK -- CAMARO Z28 -- FINAL QUALIFYING
TOM HAMMONDS, WINNEBAGO/MATCO TOOLS/KENDALL OIL CAMARO Z28, did not qualify. After replacing the engine that broke last night, his first run today was not quick enough to qualify. He obtained another Finish Line Racing engine from another Pro Stock team, but it couldn't be installed, as the mountings were different (two different chassis), and to make modifications would have taken too long. He was unable to run the final round.
KURT JOHNSON, AC DELCO CAMARO Z28, is No. 3 qualifier, 6.922/199.95.
KURT: "Our qualifying started out pretty good, we were only two hundredths (of a second) behind the No. 1 qualifier, but now we've been backing up to where we're seven hundredths behind him. The Camaro is just not going from second gear to the finih line. We're losing five or six hundredths down track, just spinning and shaking and carrying on. We've got about 18 hours to get it all together."
LARRY MORGAN, RAYBESTOS CAMARO Z28, squeaked out a No. 14 qualifying spot in the final session, 6.951/197.58, after replacing the "incorrect" shock box.
MORGAN: "We knew after the first run it was never a problem with the power. But Laurie Szczezny (chassis engineer from GM Motorsports) came over and asked me if we wanted to check the shocks. She tested the shocks and found nothing wrong and found nothing wrong with the shock box. Well, after the first run today she came back and said she thought we might have one of her bad shock boxes (that she was testing for GM) on our Camaro by accident. Well, we didn't know it until after we made that first run today. I had taken it down to her to test it. Then when I went to pick it up, I didn't realize I had picked up the wrong one. She came down and checked the numbers and we found that we had switched shock boxes. So we changed the box, changed the suspension and that's about it. We went over the Camaro with a fine toothcomb to find out if everything was all right. We're sure happy to be in the race for Chevrolet and Raybestos. It was a frustrating three weeks. Hopefully if we win this race it will make us feel better about it."
# # #