BAZEMORE REMAINS SEVENTH AFTER BRAINERD BRAINERD, Minn. (Aug. 12, 2007) -- Whit Bazemore and the David Powers-owned Matco Tools team held their ground Sunday at Brainerd International Raceway after posting a quarterfinal finish. Bazemore remains...
BAZEMORE REMAINS SEVENTH AFTER BRAINERD
BRAINERD, Minn. (Aug. 12, 2007) -- Whit Bazemore and the David Powers-owned Matco Tools team held their ground Sunday at Brainerd International Raceway after posting a quarterfinal finish. Bazemore remains seventh in the NHRA Top Fuel standings with one race left in the Countdown to Eight in NHRA's Countdown to the Championship.
After qualifying third for the second time this season (Topeka) with a 4.582-second elapsed time on Saturday, Bazemore knocked off fan-favorite David Grubnic before falling to Morgan Lucas in the quarterfinals.
Facing off against the Australian native for the second time this season, Grubnic got the jump at the start, but had mechanical problems. Bazemore's Matco Tools rail shook the tires, but the veteran racer pedaled the throttle and got his dragster to recover and sped to a run of 4.933 seconds at 326.08 mph. Grubnic's black dragster recorded a run of 5.494 at 239.65 mph.
In the quarterfinals, Bazemore did not have lane choice against Lucas. The racers used nearly identical reaction times, but the Matco Tools rail overpowered the B.I.R. track and smoked the tires, slowing to a run of 6.052-seconds. Lucas cruised to a pass of 4.622 at 328.38 to earn the trip to the semifinals. It was the first career meeting between Bazemore and Lucas. The Eugene, Ore. resident now has a 14-14 record this season.
"We were pretty fortunate that (David) Grubnic had problems in the other lane and we got the car to recover and we got the win light," Bazemore said. "We smoked the tires in the second round. We haven't really helped our cause in the Countdown to the Championship. I think I speak for the team when I say we're really concerned for ourselves. We're going to go to Maple Grove and dig deep. We have to make things happen. That's our mindset."
The next NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series event is the 23rd annual Toyo Tires Nationals, Aug. 16-19, at Maple Grove Raceway near Reading, Pa. It is the 17th of 23 races on the 2007 NHRA schedule and the final race in NHRA's Countdown to Eight. Bazemore is a two-time finalist at the Reading race (2001, '02) and has one career pole at Maple Grove Raceway (2002).