Columbus: Chevrolet finals summary

Greg Anderson gives Chevrolet 100th Pro Stock win. HEBRON, Ohio, June 16, 2002 - Greg Anderson drove a Chevy Cavalier to the Pro Stock championship by defeating Darrell Alderman in the finals at the 38th annual Pontiac Excitement Nationals. It...

Greg Anderson gives Chevrolet 100th Pro Stock win.

HEBRON, Ohio, June 16, 2002 - Greg Anderson drove a Chevy Cavalier to the Pro Stock championship by defeating Darrell Alderman in the finals at the 38th annual Pontiac Excitement Nationals. It was the second win for Anderson this season and the fourth of his career. It also marked the 100th Pro Stock victory for Chevrolet.

"To get the 100th win for Chevrolet is too cool," said Anderson. "To come against a Dodge in the final is even better. You do not want to lose in the final round when you have something like that on the line."

Anderson posted the quickest e.t. of the last qualifying session on Saturday night running 6.882 seconds. That put the 41-year-old Concord, N.C. resident in the No. 5 starting position on raceday. After defeating Larry Nance in round one, the hard-charging Anderson drove his Chevy Cavalier past Ron Krisher in round two, and points-leader Jim Yates in round three before taking out Alderman in a classic Chevy-Dodge grudge match for the event title. Anderson's numbers in the championship round were 6.924 seconds at 199.05 mph. Alderman slowed to a 11.094 e.t. after breaking a transmission shifting into second gear.

"I can't say enough about my guys and this Chevy Cavalier," said Anderson. "It's just working great. We've always had a good tune up for this track. We came in fast and we left fast.

"When I saw that win light come on, I just wanted to jump through the windshield. There's nothing like it. We go through so much in this class to keep pace, and it's so tough just to qualify. To go four rounds on race day and get the win light all four rounds, I can't describe how good that feels. It's such an accomplishment. The best part was winning this race in front of my dad. He gets to come to four or five races a year, and thank God he was at this one. I won this race on Father's Day for my dad."

With his victory today, Anderson solidifies his hold on third place in the points standings. He is now only 50 points out of second place behind Warren Johnson and 136 points behind first-place Jim Yates.

"The parity in this class is incredible," Anderson said. "I think sometimes we all should be wearing straight jackets to want to compete in Pro Stock. Just to qualify is like winning a race. And then you go through such agony on raceday because any car that qualifies can win. To win two races through this season with an opportunity to win a third race this year, we've got ourselves a new team that is ready to step up."

Splitfire/Peak Pontiac Grand Am driver Jim Yates extended his points lead by one round over Warren Johnson heading into the halfway point of the season. Yates took the No. 1 qualifying spot for the fourth consecutive race and advanced to round three before losing to race-winner Greg Anderson.

"The turning point for us today was when we lost lane choice in round two," said Yates. "I had to beat Troy (Coughlin) on a holeshot because the car didn't run the number we wanted. It got loose down track, that cost us five-thousandths of a second and put us in that bad right lane for the semifinals. It's hard to run fast from that lane, although we set low e.t. over there early in the weekend, but the track was about 25 degrees cooler and had a lot more rubber then.

"Our team has a wonderful foundation. We have good power, this Pontiac Grand Am is a great car and we're working on making the driver better. This is a 23 round fight and we plan on being there for the final bell.

"We're going to take the time before St. Louis to make sure all of our parts and pieces are good. Bob's (Ingles) going to get all of our motors ready. St. Louis is going to be a critical race for us. We usually run well there because it's a good racetrack with plenty of traction and similar to what we qualified on here."

In Funny Car, Ron Capps won his first race of the season by defeating Bruce Sarver in the finals. Capps' Chevy Camaro crossed the finish line in 6.027 seconds at 235.60 mph while Sarver's Toyota slowed to a 6.942 e.t. at 257.97 mph. It was Capps first victory of the season and the 12th career Funny Car win for the 36-year-old Californian.

"I knew Bruce (Sarver) was going to be tough because he's been on his game for awhile," said Capps. "When I left the starting line I didn't see him, which is a good thing. But he blew the tires off before I did and then my car shook loose. Then my brain took over, I started pedaling and at the same time all of these emotions were going through me. I could stand up here and explain it to you in 10 minutes but it all happened in only five seconds. It's amazing the brain can work that fast. It was just a roller coaster of emotion."

Capps' win moved him all the way up from 10th place in the points standings to seventh. Combined with Larry Dixon's seventh win of the season in Top Fuel, it marks the third time that team-owner Don Prudhomme has won races at an event in both categories. It also marks 85 total victories for the legendary Prudhomme as an owner-driver.

"This team's what made it happened," said Capps. "We changed a motor in this Chevy Camaro before the second round in 30 minutes and were ready to go. I get all the glory but the guys in the trenches are the ones that do all of the hard work. They'll get in the truck tonight and drive back to Indy. They don't get enough credit for what they do and they're the ones this win is for."

-chevrolet-

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Series NHRA
Drivers Bruce Sarver , Larry Dixon , Darrell Alderman , Warren Johnson , Ron Capps , Greg Anderson , Ron Krisher , Don Prudhomme