CHEVROLET NOTES AND QUOTES FRAM ROUTE 66 NATIONALS NHRA WINSTON DRAG RACING SERIES JOLIET, ILL. SATURDAY, MAY 30, 1998 PRO STOCK TRUCK -- FIRST ROUND NOTES JERRY HAAS, CHEVY TRUCKS CHEVY S-10, was eliminated in the first round by Todd...
CHEVROLET NOTES AND QUOTES FRAM ROUTE 66 NATIONALS NHRA WINSTON DRAG RACING SERIES JOLIET, ILL. SATURDAY, MAY 30, 1998
PRO STOCK TRUCK -- FIRST ROUND NOTES
JERRY HAAS, CHEVY TRUCKS CHEVY S-10, was eliminated in the first round by Todd Patterson on a holeshot advantage (7.817/172.59 for Haas, 7.888/169.74 for Patterson).
HAAS: "We've got to do something in the clutch department. There's nothing wrong with the clutch, but we've got to do something to hold the clutch pedal in. It causes me to push real hard and makes me yank my leg. We have to continue testing. My biggest problem is catching it on the tree. At Atlanta (second of four races so far) everything was working real good and ever since then we have been having problems. We have to go back to the track and practice staging and getting the clutch out. I'm trying hard, but it is not coming up on the tree." ON YOUR EXPERIENCE HERE AT ROUTE 66 RACEWAY: "This track is the best race track I've been at. It's a showcase of all showcases. I wish all the other tracks would look at this track and do some updating. There are big pit spaces, no one is tight in pit areas, it's a nice track."
TWO NEW PRO STOCK TRUCK TEAMS
** Two new teams debuted their Chevy S-10s this weekend in Pro Stock Truck: Art Hodges in the Winnebago/Harbor Freight Tools Chevy S-10 and Bart Price in his Chevy S-10.
Price, 44, of Pleasanton, Calif., owner of a heating/a.c. company and a manufacturing company, made history yesterday by becoming the first Pro Stock Truck to not qualify for the 16-truck field. Although his e.t. was good enough to be in the top 16, NHRA's ruling that there would be four guaranteed spots for the top qualifiers for each manufacturer, placed him in 17th, allowing the slower Ford of Sondra Sikes to take the 16th position.
PRICE: "Well, I hope they change that, obviously. But we knew coming in that that was the rule. Our goal was to come out here and qualify. It's a new driving experience for me, I've never driven a stick shift car (or truck) before. We're not really upset about it. We feel by St. Louis we should be in the top 10. We have the horsepower here, and the knowhow. We just need a better driver. When we get time and do some practicing and stuff, the driver will be a little better. It's all the driver's fault right now, it's not the truck, not the motor. We need a little more practice. We like the truck, it's built by Todd Beavis, it has its capabilities."
Price will compete in the remaining eight races in the series. Engines are by Panella Motorsports, equipped with a G-Force transmission. Price competes in Competition Eliminator in a Pontiac Grand Prix.
HODGES (eliminated in first round by John Lingenfelter): ON COMPETING IN HIS FIRST PRO STOCK EVENT: "It's pretty exciting. I'm a little depressed, I'm a competitive person, I hate to lose. Overall I like the atmosphere, I like the people. It's a good place to be. I think it's a good spot for us. It fits our niche and it fits our engine builder's (Bill Maropulos) niche. We just need to work on our equipment a little bit, on the whole package. I think we need more time. This is our first race, we didn't expect to light it on fire, but we did expect a little more out of it. I'm a positive person, I look on the positive side of everything." ON THE ROUTE 66 RACEWAY: "It will be good. Right now it just needs race cars going down it. It's pretty slick on the starting line. That even threw us more of a curve. The track is smooth as can be, the atmosphere is good, the surroundings are good, the people treat you really well. It just needs race cars to go down, that's all there is to it."
Hodges, 40, of Simi Valley, Calif., is a contractor and builds large custom homes. Most recently he built a 61,000-sq. ft. home in Beverly Hills. His 14-year-old son Jacob is the crew chief, and Art considers Pro Stock racer Steve Schmidt his mentor. He formerly raced a '63 Corvette D-Altered, a car also built by his Chevy S-10 truck chassis builder Jerry Haas. # # #