GM Racing Las Vegas qualifying summary

Hoyos Continues Hot Streak As No. 1 Qualifier In Chevy Cavalier; Ladwig Also Puts Pontiac Sunfire In No. 1 Spot LAS VEGAS, July 18, 2004 - Chevy Cavalier driver Nelson Hoyos may have served notice to his Pro FWD competitors in NHRA Sport Compact...

Hoyos Continues Hot Streak As No. 1 Qualifier In Chevy Cavalier; Ladwig Also Puts Pontiac Sunfire In No. 1 Spot

LAS VEGAS, July 18, 2004 - Chevy Cavalier driver Nelson Hoyos may have served notice to his Pro FWD competitors in NHRA Sport Compact Drag Racing that things were starting to come together last month at Denver when he drove his Ecotec-powered Cavalier to the No. 1 qualifying spot, a national elapsed-time record as well as his first win of the season. The 2003 POWERade champion did nothing to dispel that notion by capturing the top spot in Pro FWD for today's eliminations at the Garrett Turbo NHRA Sport Compact Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Hoyos had a track-record elapsed time of 7.752 seconds at 185.56 mph, and an elapsed time of 7.830 seconds in today's finals will back up his time and establish a new national mark.

"There is no question that the GM Racing Team is on the roll that we have been waiting for since the season began," said Hoyos, who is coming off his first win of the season in Denver last month and is the defending winner at Las Vegas. "We plan on winning every race the rest of the season and getting rid of the awful taste we had in our mouths from the first four races. Sometimes it takes a little while to get things running on the right track, and when there is a lot of pressure to win, especially because of all the success we had last year, it can make things twice as tough. We think that that is all behind us at this point and we are ready to taste success from now on."

Not to be outdone, Lisa Kubo, in the APC Saturn Ion Quad Coupe, recorded the fastest run of the weekend, using Ecotec power to post a track-record 191.54-mph pass on her first run of the evening. If she runs within 1-percent of that mark on Saturday, it will certify as a national record speed for the Pro FWD category. Kubo is qualified second at 8.156 seconds.

Marty Ladwig, a native of San Antonio, Texas, drove the GM Racing Pontiac Sunfire to the ninth top-qualifying position of his career and fourth of the season in HOT ROD, storming down the quarter-mile with a track-record run of 8.372 at 165.78.

"It's great to come into the desert and run as well as we did today, especially considering the conditions," said Ladwig, who also qualified No. 1 at Las Vegas last year. "The Ecotec engine has performed well all season and the team has really gelled to the point where we feel confident that a win is in the cards each time we race. Hopefully, tomorrow we can collect another win and get closer to capturing the season series."

In Pro FWD, Matt Hartford in the Summit Racing Chevy Cavalier qualified No. 2 at 6.806 seconds and a track-record 205.22 mph. Stephan Papadakis in a Honda claimed the No. 1 spot at 6.779 seconds and 203.19 mph.

Television coverage of the Garrett Turbo NHRA Sport Compact Nationals can be seen on ESPN2 on Saturday, July 31, starting at 6:30 p.m. (ET), and 30 minutes of event coverage will re-air on ESPN2 on Thursday, Aug. 12, at 2:30 a.m. (ET).

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Series Drag
Drivers Matt Hartford