Rockingham: Friday qualifying pit notes

Friday Qualifying Pit Notes - IHRA Holley Spring Nationals presented by Advance Auto Parts in Rockingham, NC ROCKINGHAM, NC - Qualifying Pit Notes from the IHRA Holley Spring Nationals courtesy of in Rockingham, NC. TOP ...

Friday Qualifying Pit Notes - IHRA Holley Spring Nationals presented by Advance Auto Parts in Rockingham, NC

ROCKINGHAM, NC - Qualifying Pit Notes from the IHRA Holley Spring Nationals courtesy of in Rockingham, NC.


Bruce Litton - Under the IHRA three-run format, the Top Fuel dragsters make one pass on Friday. Litton made the best of his first effort and hammered out the second spot in the Wix Filters Top Fueler with a 4.845/276.41. The Indianapolis, Ind.-based enclosed trailer dealer will have two more opportunities tomorrow to improve. This is his first IHRA outing since a fire devastated his race shop back in January.


Scott Weney - Weney was slated to make his debut behind the wheel of Billy Gibson's flopper. However, as of Friday the team's transporter had not yet arrived, although en route.

Laurie Cannister - Cannister officially made her Pro Funny Car debut. The defending Pro Outlaw World Champion chose to attack the Rockingham Dragway quarter-mile with a conservative effort and used a 6.269/214.72 to claim the tenth spot in the program after the first session. She improved in the final session with a 6.199/222.00 to land in the ninth spot.

John Vouros - Vouros is embarking on his first full season in the IHRA Pro Funny Car division. His first run of the new season wasn't a pretty one. He drifted out of the groove in the left lane and took out a cone drawing a disqualification and negating a 6.33 lap. He fared better in the Funny Car as he leapt to a 6.104/214.52 to end up in the fifth position.


Johnny Rocca/Paul Athey - Athey made his debut in IHRA Pro Modified competition, but did not achieve his objectives on the initial attempt. The car launched hard, but shook the tires and drifted to the right. The Mohegan Sun-sponsored driver coasted to an 18.676. The final session afforded no improvement as the car unloaded off of the line and coasted through the lights. He enters the final day of qualifying on the outside looking in.

Team Castellana - The new look of Team Castellana made their IHRA debut in Rockingham. Mike Castellana's 1957 Chevy was the quickest of the first session over teammate and engine builder Shannon Jenkins. Castellana's classic 1957 Chevy was impressive as he launched straight as an arrow for a 6.362/215.86 to end up second quickest. Jenkins didn't have a good run as he launched hard and the car darted to the right. He entered the second session unqualified. The situations were reversed in the evening session as Castellana shook the tires out of the gates. Jenkins jumped into the show with a 6.315/219.54.

Dale Brinsfield - Brinsfield tested in Rockingham late last season and that proved to be a factor in his opening success in qualifying. The Import-business owner from Greensboro, NC., earned a solid place in the field with a 6.390/220.51. He claimed the fifth position. Brinsfield continued to improve his tune-up in the second session and scored his personal best with a 6.296/222.36.

Steve Cossis - Cossis finished runner-up at the season-opening Spring Open and hoped to continue his momentum on the first qualifying attempt at the Holley Spring Nationals in Rockingham, NC. He launched hard, but was forced to lift on the top end and coast to a 6.823/167.76. Cossis confided that he missed the clutch on that pass because he underestimated the track. His fortunes didn't improve as he unloaded just off of the line and coasted through, still unqualified.

Troy Critchley/Roy Singleton - The Majesty Group team of Roy Singleton made their 2001 IHRA national event debut at the "Rock". Newly appointed driver Troy Critchley made a baseline 6.412/201.91 to land in the tenth position. Crewchief Chuck Ford made the decision to go after the first session with a mild tune-up. He turned up the level of performance and recorded a 6.312/218.62. That run put him solidly in the top half of the field.

Alan Pittman - Pittman continued his wealth of success from the pre-season. Two weeks after securing the pole position at the Gatornationals in Gainesville, Fla., the Lyman, SC-based chassis builder pushed the Westbrook Motorsports 1941 Willys to a 6.335/219.94 to continue his qualifying dominance. Pittman was loaded up for the evening session but the car skated over the surface, managing to nail down a 6.390. He slipped to the ninth spot after the first day.

Steve Vick - Vick established himself as the quickest nitrous driver among the Pro Modified fraternity in pre-season testing. He didn't miss a beat during the initial qualifying session as he laid down a 6.377/220.69. His pass led qualifying in the early portion of the session and upon completion, he was third. His final run didn't provide any improvement as the car lunged left just past the sixty-foot mark. He is in the program headed into the final day of qualifying.

Ed Hoover - Hoover has been fighting electrical gremlins for the past few weeks. His first qualifying attempt offered no major reprieve from the problems that had burdened him two weeks ago in Gainesville. Despite the nitrous system cutting off eight times during the run, Pro Modified's original national event winner managed to card a 6.391/213.84. He was the sixth quickest after that session. He evidently found his problem as he blasted out a 6.313/217.88 to establish himself solidly in the show.


John Montecalvo - After blistering the Virginia Motorsports Park racing surface in testing earlier in the month, the Citgo-sponsored Cavalier faltered in their first attempt at the Rockingham Dragway racing surface. Montecalvo shook the tires in second gear and was forced to abort the run and coast to a 9.781/113.24. He redeemed himself in the second session as he jumped to the fifth spot with a 6.61/208.01.

Angelo Alesci - Alesci chose the first race of the season to debut a new Chevrolet Cavalier cloaked in black paint and a red Chevrolet emblem on the door. His first qualifying attempt made the "Bowtie Brigade" very proud as he jumped into the fifth spot with a 6.744/205.98 after the first session. The first run was deemed to be a baseline. Alesci turned up the wick with a 6.660/207.46 in the second session and ended up in the 4th.

Tom Lee - The last time Lee was in Rockingham, he emerged as the winner of the season-ending CARQUEST Autumn Nationals. His first run of the 2001 season thrust him into the qualifying lead with a 6.712/206.92. He ended the session as the second quickest. Lee was not to be upstaged by the GM contingent as he responded in kind with a 6.611/208.65 to end the first day of qualifying on top.

Dwayne Rice - Rice may not have one of the swoopy new GM machines, but that didn't stop his refurbished Pontiac Firebird from jumping to the forefront after the first session. He was the tops Friday afternoon with a 6.711/205.76. He failed to hold the top spot, but stepped up strong in the evening with a 6.635/207.25. He concluded the first day of qualifying as the second quickest.


The current qualifiers for the LIZZARD RACING Top Sportsman Quick Eight are as follows: <pre> 1. Kenny Rucker 6.821/203.81 2. Elijah Morton 7.131/192.63 3. Dwayne Silance 7.167/192.58 4. Bill Davis 7.187/194.38 5. Doug Mills 7.216/192.08 6. David Ross 7.216/192.08 7. Thomas Dunford 7.253/199.46 8. Ray Schuler 7.291/188.54


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Series Drag
Drivers Laurie Cannister , Scott Weney , Johnny Rocca , Bruce Litton , Alan Pittman , Paul Athey , John Vouros , Dwayne Rice , Angelo Alesci , John Montecalvo , Ed Hoover , Shannon Jenkins , Doug Mills , Troy Critchley