TEAM WILKERSON RACINGLEVI, RAY & SHOUP NHRA Nitro Funny Car "Notes & Quotes" from Daniel Wilkerson, driver of the Levi, Ray & Shoup Funny Car, after making his professional debut at Heartland Park, in Topeka, Kan. YOUNG WILK DEBUTS IN TOPEKA...
TEAM WILKERSON RACINGLEVI, RAY & SHOUP NHRA Nitro Funny Car
"Notes & Quotes" from Daniel Wilkerson, driver of the Levi, Ray & Shoup Funny Car, after making his professional debut at Heartland Park, in Topeka, Kan.
YOUNG WILK DEBUTS IN TOPEKA WITH 4.330
Daniel Wilkerson clicked his Levi, Ray & Shoup Funny Car off a little early on his first lap as an NHRA professional, in Friday's second session, but still clocked in with a 4.330 during his debut. The run held for a spot in the top 12 for much of the session, but eventually ended the day as the 13-quickest time on the board, and therefore he will enter Saturday as one of four drivers with no official time. With only 16 cars at this event, Wilkerson will race on Sunday, and Saturday's qualifying will be the method for figuring out exactly what spot he will occupy.
"Well, it went straight and it was running really good, but I didn't quite get it to the finish line before I lifted," Wilkerson said. "I was focused on keeping it in the middle and making a good launch, because you want to look like you know what you're doing out there, and then it got to the 660 mark and as I went by those timing blocks I figured the back half of the lap will be quicker and that was it. I really didn't mean to, consciously, but as soon as I lifted I saw the 1,000-foot marker go by and I knew I hadn't legged it to the finish line.
"We're taking our time, getting some experience, and making sure everything is comfortable out there, for me, the other racers, and my mom and dad, too. There was just a lot of buzz waiting for that lap today, considering we were out here all day, and had the car ready to go before the first run but didn't go up there until the second one. Then, we're part of the first pair in the second session, but they scraped and dragged the track and it seemed like it took forever. When there's that much going on, and you're waiting to go, my first instinct was just to make sure it was a safe and straight lap. From here on out, we'll worry about being under power at the finish line. But hey, we've got our first NHRA Full Throttle lap under our belts, and that's cool. Very cool."