CAPPS HAS TOUGH DAY IN SONOMA, QUALIFIES NO. 12 SONOMA, Calif. (July 28, 2007) - NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series Funny Car points leader Ron Capps and the Brut "Test Drive" Dodge Charger R/T team had a tough time in qualifying for the ...
CAPPS HAS TOUGH DAY IN SONOMA, QUALIFIES NO. 12
SONOMA, Calif. (July 28, 2007) - NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series Funny Car points leader Ron Capps and the Brut "Test Drive" Dodge Charger R/T team had a tough time in qualifying for the Fram-Autolite NHRA Nationals this weekend under sunny and hot Northern California conditions.
The best the team with a reputation for consistency and solid passes could pull out was a 4.877-second pass at 286.74 mph in the Friday-night session to place Capps No. 12 in the Funny Car field. This marked only the second time all season in which the team did not qualify in the top half (not counting the DNQ in Topeka).
His other laps included a 4.969/307.72 (No. 4 at the time), a 6.822/125.87, and a 4.988/308.99. Polesitter Mike Ashley posted a 4.743/326.79.
"Qualifying was tough," said Capps who clinched a spot in the Countdown to the Championship in the last event in Seattle. "It's another tough weekend for everybody, not just our team. The conditions were tricky. As you could tell by the times, the crew chiefs were really trying to slow everything down to get the cars down the track. (Only three Funny Cars made solid runs down the track in today's earlier session.)
"And then somebody would go out and run a killer number and make you think that it could be done. So, it was just very tricky.
"I know Ace (crew chief Ed McCulloch) and he's trying very hard. We don't have lane choice. Robert Hight (second in the point standings) doesn't have lane choice either for first round. He's also in the bottom half of the field.
"But, we've got a great group of guys on the Don Schumacher Racing team, with the Mopar/Oakley car (Gary Scelzi in sixth) and the MTS car (Jack Beckman in second). They're running well. We're going down the track, but we just need to pull it up.
"Also, we're into some new clutch parts that we started trying in Seattle that we're going to have to run the rest of the year. So Ace is just trying to get a handle on that. Sometimes it takes a little bit just to find where the car wants to be happy. And, we're not smoking the tires. That's the good thing. We've got data."
Capps faces Del Worsham in the opening round of eliminations on Sunday. "He's a good friend," said Capps, "and the way we look at it, everybody, even the guys who didn't qualify, are tough in this class."