Mopar Motorsports NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series O'Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Spring Nationals April 13, 2002 TELEVISION TIMES: (ALL TIMES EASTERN) Qualifying: Sat., April 13; 9:30 p.m.-midnight; ESPN2 Final Round: Sun., April 14; 8-10 p.m.; ...
NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series
O'Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Spring Nationals
April 13, 2002
TELEVISION TIMES: (ALL TIMES EASTERN)
Qualifying: Sat., April 13; 9:30 p.m.-midnight; ESPN2
Final Round: Sun., April 14; 8-10 p.m.; ESPN2
Repeat: Tues., April 16; 2:30-4:30 p.m.; ESPN2
BAYTOWN, Texas -- Mopar Parts NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series teams completed the second and final day of qualifying for this weekend's O'Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Spring Nationals at Houston Raceway Park
Darrell Alderman and the Mopar Parts Dodge Neon R/T will be trying to improve on his fourth-place points standing while Dean Skuza, driver of the Mopar Parts Dodge Stratus R/T Nitro Funny Car, will try to win his third NHRA national event from the sixth-starting slot.
The following are notes and quotes following today's qualifying activity.
DEAN SKUZA, driver of the Mopar Parts Dodge Stratus R/T
Mopar Parts Dodge Stratus R/T driver Dean Skuza collected the sixth-qualified position despite smoking the tires during today's two passes. The Brecksville, Ohio resident will face off against No. 11 qualifier Tommy Johnson, Jr., after posting a 4.915-second lap at 271.90 mph in Friday's second session.
"Our problem with these new tires has been tire speed," Skuza said." We found some tire speed on that run and it had way too much. The night run last night had a little too much, so we calmed it down and came out in the third session and had no tire speed again. And we only made a few minor changes for that run. We wanted to go back to having high tire speed, and we had too much. We're going to think about how we get the right tire speed for tomorrow."
GENE WILSON, driver of the Mopar Parts Dodge Neon R/T
There are too many' close' cliches to roll one out on this day, but Mopar Parts Dodge Neon R/T driver Gene Wilson could use many of them after this weekend. The 29-year-old driver's 6.871-second elapsed time was good enough to crack the top 16, but a 200.32 mph top speed was slower than No. 16 qualifier John Geyer's top speed of 200.50 mph. Both Geyer and Wilson had identical elapsed times.
"It's unfortunate, but we're making really good runs," Wilson said." It's very capable of running in the front of the pack. We're going to look forward to Bristol and see what we can out together."
LARRY MORGAN, driver of the Mopar Parts Dodge Neon R/T
Larry Morgan's struggle during the second-round of qualifying was too much to overcome for the blue Mopar Parts Dodge Neon R/T driver. Morgan improved his elapsed time in the third session with a 6.887-second lap at 200.44 mph, but it wasn't quick enough to overcome a 6.871-second bump slot.
"We've been having some trouble with our pistons," Morgan said. "A lot of the guys in the pits have had the same trouble and that's what our problem has been. I've talked with the piston guys and we have a new set coming. In fact, they had such a problem that a set of my old cracked pistons ran better."
DARRELL ALDERMAN, driver of the Mopar Parts Dodge Neon R/T
Darrell Alderman, driver of the Mopar Parts Dodge Neon R/T, will face off against Las Vegas semifinal-round opponent George Marnell in round one after nabbing the 11th-qualifying position. Alderman set his 6.858-second elapsed time at 201.46 mph during the cooler temperatures of Friday night's second session.
"We have a good set up for tomorrow," Alderman said." I think the left lane might be a touch better, so lane choice may not mean as much going into tomorrow."
BART PRICE, owner of the DBP Motorsports Dodge Neon R/T
With only one Hemi engine on hand, the Bart Price-owned BDP Motorsports Neon R/T of Greg Stanfield missed the last-qualifying session with engine woes. Stanfield's best time of the weekend was a 6.931-second lap at 198.90 mph.
"There's a lot of work to be done," Price said." We hurt something in the engine, and because we only had one, we couldn't make our final pass. We're encouraged with what's been happening, but we have a long way to go as well."