Rocca and Athey suffer hard times in Michigan at the Northern Nationals STANTON, Mi. - Paul Athey, driver of Johnny Rocca's "Ironhorse" suffered a tough weekend at the 20th annual IHRA CARQUEST Northern Nationals. The former Funny Car driver who...
Rocca and Athey suffer hard times in Michigan at the Northern Nationals
STANTON, Mi. - Paul Athey, driver of Johnny Rocca's "Ironhorse" suffered a tough weekend at the 20th annual IHRA CARQUEST Northern Nationals. The former Funny Car driver who now handles the reigns of the Rocca's gorgeous 1949 Mercury failed to qualify for Sunday's eliminations at Mid-Michigan Motorplex.
After shutting the car off after the burnout during their opening qualifying attempt due to leaking fluids, Athey returned for Friday's second session and laid down a 6.44 at 218 mph. The team ended the day in the 19th position with two sessions left on Saturday to make the show.
The beautiful orange Mohegan Sun-sponsored entry improved to a 6.40/218 during the third qualify session of Mopar Pro Modified, but it still was not enough to make the 16-car field. Athey and Rocca found themselves going into the final session unqualified for the second national event in a row.
With ideal conditions to improve under during Saturday evenings "Night of Fire", Athey was looking to turn the weekend around for the struggling team. For the second time this season a broken starter spelled doom for Athey and the popular "Ironhorse" machine as they were unable to make a pass and failed to qualify. Athey and Rocca concluded qualifying 21st out of the 29 Pro Modifieds attempting to make the show on Sunday.
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The official website for the Ironhorse is www.usaracing.com.