WILK WILL RUN FROM 6TH SPOT AFTER EVENTFUL DAY
Racers and fans got a taste of just about everything on Saturday in Charlotte, as morning clouds turned to scary moments and weather alerts. Once the storms passed, luckily with no serious damage, the sky cleared but the wind kicked up, making simple movements difficult.
Tim Wilkerson drove his Levi, Ray & Shoup Shelby Mustang to a solid 4.190 in Q3, which was contested about four hours late, around 4:00 p.m. Then, during the final session, his LRS Ford hiked the front end and got the front wheels in the air, but when it came back to Earth it did so directly in the path of a foam timing block, scattering orange bits all over and punching a hole in the nose of the Mustang.
Wilk ended qualifying in the same 6th spot in which he started the day, and he will race out of Group D. The foursome consists of Cruz Pedregon, Matt Hagan, John Smith, and Wilk. Wilkerson will have second lane choice, behind Pedregon.
"Man, it was just an aggressive tune-up and it got out there and started to dance, then it picked the front end up," Wilkerson said. "I kept thinking it would settle back down but it stayed up and by the time I could lift we were right on the center line. Nothing I could do to avoid the block down there. The damage isn't horrible, but it's enough we'll have to haul out the back-up body for tomorrow. We'll fix the hole in this one when we get back to the shop. I'm happy we're running well, but I'm mad it did that.
"As for the group, the first thing you have to do is remember that you're not racing one car, you're racing three. In a normal race, we'd have John Smith and right now we'd be plotting how to beat him, but now we have to figure out a way to come in first or second in a group with four good cars. It's an interesting format, and we'll just have to focus on running as fast as we can in order to get there first or second. Having the front tires on the ground would be a good first step."