CAPPS TAKES A "PROVISIONAL" IN BRISTOL, WILL START 16TH BRISTOL, Tenn. (April 30, 2005) - The NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series does not provide "provisionals" as does NASCAR racing. The closest thing to earning a provisional in NHRA occurred...
CAPPS TAKES A "PROVISIONAL" IN BRISTOL, WILL START 16TH
BRISTOL, Tenn. (April 30, 2005) - The NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series does not provide "provisionals" as does NASCAR racing. The closest thing to earning a provisional in NHRA occurred today when Ron Capps made it into the O'Reilly Thunder Valley NHRA Nationals field based entirely on point standings.
Capps failed to qualify the Brut Dodge Stratus Funny Car after the car had a clutch problem in the only round of qualifying held this weekend because of rain.
When a second qualifying round was washed out today, the NHRA implemented a rule it only used once before, at the World Finals in 2002, in which the top 10 in points were assured a place in the field, while the rest of the 16-car roster would be filled by those not in the top 10 who qualified today. Capps will start in 16th.
"It's nice that the NHRA is finally doing what we've seen being done in other motorsports, where they just set the field if you can't run because of the weather," said Capps, sixth in points, "instead of having to come back on another weekend, when our schedules are pretty hectic as it is.
"The car just smoked the tires immediately in that one round. Something just went very wrong in the clutch that wasn't supposed to happen and when it does that you're just kind of a sitting duck.
"I tried to pedal it a couple of times, but it just didn't respond. We were hoping there would be a second session so we could see if we had fixed the problem.
"In a way, this may have worked to our benefit, as there was no guarantee that we had actually fixed the problem.
"Weather conditions on Sunday are expected to be the exact opposite of the last few days. But (crew chiefs) Ed 'Ace' McCulloch and Dan Olson have a handle on it, and we should be good to go."
Capps faces No. 1 qualifier Eric Medlen in the first round of eliminations, which begin at noon on Sunday.