Cruz Pedregon Reaches 300-Round Victories for Career Advance Auto Parts Nitro Funny Car Makes Third Semifinal of 2005 BRISTOL, Tenn. (May 1, 2005) -- Cruz Pedregon, driver of the Advance Auto Parts Monte Carlo Nitro Funny Car, advanced to his...
Cruz Pedregon Reaches 300-Round Victories for Career
Advance Auto Parts Nitro Funny Car Makes Third Semifinal of 2005
BRISTOL, Tenn. (May 1, 2005) -- Cruz Pedregon, driver of the Advance Auto Parts Monte Carlo Nitro Funny Car, advanced to his third semifinal of the 2005 season during today's NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals at Bristol Dragway.
Pedregon also reached the 300th-round victory of his career when he defeated long-time rival John Force in round one.
"I'm not much into statistics, but this one meant a lot to me," Pedregon said. "And it was against Force. I know we have had our differences in the past, but there is no one I respect more in this business than John. To beat him for my 300th round victory is just awesome.
"I couldn't have done this without my team," Pedregon continued. "We complement each other very well. We need to keep going on what we're doing."
Pedregon defeated his brother Tony Pedregon in round two, after posting a 4.842-second elapsed time at 314.24 mph. The run was the quickest of the second round. Pedregon then smoked the tires and lost to Jeff Arend in the semifinal.
"I felt we gave one away in the semifinal," Pedregon said. "The track got a little slippery and we might have been a little aggressive. If the car would have hooked up, we liked our chances. But you have to give Jeff Arend credit because he did what he had to do."
Advance Auto Parts Notebook:
POINTS BATTLE: Advance Auto Parts driver Cruz Pedregon moved to third place in NHRA Nitro Funny Car points after his semifinal round appearance during today's NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals at Bristol Dragway. He only sits two behind second-place John Force heading into Atlanta.
The last time Pedregon was in the thick of a points race like this was back in 1998, when he finished third. The Camarillo, Calif., resident was the 1992 NHRA Funny Car World Champion.
"The points are so important," Pedregon said. "This is the first time in about seven years that I've been in the middle of one of these battles. But when you have a great car and team, good things start to happen.
"This is our best start in a long time," Pedregon said. "We're still a little rough here and there, but we're getting better as we go along. The competition is a lot tougher now than it was back when we were last in one of these battles. Every team out here can win any given round."
QUICK NOTE: Cruz Pedregon defeated both John Force and brother Tony Pedregon today, earning the 300th round victory of his career in the process. Ironically, those are the only two active drivers currently ahead of Cruz in this department.