Bristol: Dave Grubnic preview

Dave Grubnic and the Kalitta Motorsports team take the season's quickest dragster to Thunder Valley BRISTOL, Tenn., (May 14, 2008) -- This weekend, May 16-18, native Australian Dave Grubnic, driver of the 8,000-horsepower Kalitta Motorsports Top...

Dave Grubnic and the Kalitta Motorsports team take the season's quickest dragster to Thunder Valley

BRISTOL, Tenn., (May 14, 2008) -- This weekend, May 16-18, native Australian Dave Grubnic, driver of the 8,000-horsepower Kalitta Motorsports Top Fuel dragster, is hoping to strike more fear in the hearts of his nitro-fueled competition at Bristol Dragway in Bristol, Tenn., site of the annual running of the O'Reilly NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals.

At the previous NHRA national event in St. Louis, Grubnic posted the quickest elapsed time of the 2008 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, and a jaw-dropping 4.467 seconds later the rest of the world's quickest and fastest drivers in the Top Fuel class knew that even though Grubnic's 333-plus mph rail is "Back in Black", it's still one of the most dominant and intimidating race cars in drag racing.

"That was a terrific effort by Connie (Kalitta, crew chief, team owner, and drag racing legend) and our entire team in St. Louis," Grubnic, a 45-year old resident of Ennis, Mont., said. "No one has ever doubted Connie's ability to make horsepower, and we had almost perfect conditions for him to show that off there. The weather forecast for this weekend looks like it may be similar conditions, so I'm really anxious to get back in our race car and see if we can go even quicker.

"We're still looking for a primary sponsor on our race car, so hopefully that run in St. Louis made some more people aware of what we have to offer and what this team is capable of. Our goal is to continue to grab attention and hopefully get a lot of exposure in the winner's circle at Bristol."

Grubnic is currently in 9th place in POWERade Top Fuel championship points.

In early 2004, Grubnic was hired to drive for legendary team owner Connie "the Bounty Hunter" Kalitta and Kalitta Motorsports. In the fall of '04, Grubnic won the lucrative and coveted Budweiser Shootout in Las Vegas, becoming only the fourth driver in the special event's history to win its $100,000 prize in his first attempt. Grubnic picked up an emotional first NHRA national event win in May, 2005 in Topeka, Kans., to become the first non-native North American to win a Top Fuel trophy. He has one other event victory to date, the 2006 running of the famed Gatornationals in Gainesville, Fla.

The O'Reilly NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals begins Friday for the nitro-fueled classes with two qualifying sessions at 4:30 p.m. (ET) and 7:00 p.m. Two more qualifying opportunities take place Saturday at 1:00 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. The top sixteen qualified cars will race Sunday in final eliminations beginning at noon.

All times and dates subject to change.

The O'Reilly NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals is the 8th of 24 national events in the 2008 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series.

-credit: km

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