COLUMBUS, Ohio, June 15, 2001 -Qualifying for the 37th annual Pontiac Excitement Nationals presented by Summit Racing got underway today at National Trail Raceway. In Pro Stock Truck, Don Smith is the No. 1 qualifier in a Chevy S-10 with an...
COLUMBUS, Ohio, June 15, 2001 -Qualifying for the 37th annual Pontiac Excitement Nationals presented by Summit Racing got underway today at National Trail Raceway. In Pro Stock Truck, Don Smith is the No. 1 qualifier in a Chevy S-10 with an elapsed time of 7.580 seconds at 178.78 mph. Greg Stanfield is qualified second, Taylor Lastor is third, Bob Panella is fourth and Scott Perin is fifth, all in Chevy S-10's.
Mike Edwards drove the Young Life Chevy Cavalier to the No. 1 position in Pro Stock with an elapsed time of 6.988 seconds at 196.36 mph. Ron Krisher is second in a Cavalier, George Marnell is third in a Grand Am, John Nobile is fourth in a Cutlass and Warren Johnson is fifth in a Grand Am.
Tommy Johnson Jr. led the Chevy brigade in Funny Car qualifying his Camaro in the No. 3 spot with an elapsed time of 4.896 seconds at 304.60 mph. Dean Skuza is the No. 1 qualifier in a Dodge with an elapsed time of 4.885 seconds at 305.08 mph. Frank Pedregon is second in a Firebird, Del Worsham is fourth in a Firebird, and Johnny Gray is fifth in a Firebird. Jim Epler is 11th and Ron Capps is 12th, both in Chevy Camaros.
Qualifying highlights of the Pontiac Excitement Nationals can be seen on ESPN2 on Saturday, June 16, beginning at 10 p.m. Eastern. Same-day coverage of final eliminations can be seen on ESPN2 on Sunday, June 17, starting at 8 p.m. Eastern.
PRO STOCK TRUCK
Don Smith (Texas Harley Chevy S-10) - "We're surprising ourselves with how well we are running. During that first run we put our Atlanta tune up in our Chevy S-10 and thought we would be close on it, but it just smoked the tires. The truck got down in fourth gear and did a little devil dance. Scott Perin was beside me, and I was hoping he'd be on a good run. I was right beside him and we got down there, but neither one of us made a good run. So we went back, made a tire change and changed some shift lights because we re-geared the truck. My crew chief told me to go up there and show everyone that we do know what we're doing and we were fortunate that we made a good run in that last session. Everything we got out of that lap came in the back half of the track. It's a Bill Jenkins engine. Perin has the twin to the motor, and he ran a 7.60 so that's what we were looking for but we shook a little bit. Then when we got to halftrack it just took off. If I mess up in driving, the truck seems to save me. If I can ever get where I can drive good we're going to be great. It was a lot cooler that session than it was that first run. So we were happy with the performance considering the conditions. No. 1 qualifier - 7.580ET/178.78MPH
John Coughlin (Jeg's Mail Order Chevrolet S-10) - "We were just a little off on our set up during the first session. We know what we need to do to get this Jeg's Chevy S-10 back to the top of the qualifying order. We gained a lot of data on the track that will help us tomorrow when the conditions are expected to improve." No. 14 qualifier - 7.648ET/177.11MPH
Mike Coughlin (Jeg's Mail Order Chevrolet S-10) -"That is exactly how we wanted to start the weekend in front of the hometown crowd. It means a lot for Team Jeg's to do well and we have the largest cheering section at the track. The most important thing is that we improved our qualifying times. I did not get any data from my first run and that might have hurt us a little tuning my Chevy S-10 for the second session." No. 8 qualifier - 7.614ET/175.89MPH
Mike Edwards (Young Life Chevrolet Cavalier) - "That was about the nicest run that I can make. I haven't seen the graphs yet but there wasn't much left in it. It felt great. This Chevy Cavalier is really running great. After Joliet we only made the engine change and we haven't missed a beat yet with this thing. We're just looking forward to the rest of the year and going after a couple more wins. We're going to use the Reher-Morrison engine program for the rest of the season. We're going to keep working with it and hopefully Bruce Allen can get in the winner's circle too - we're sharing information with each other. I'm excited, I feel good. A lot of pressure has been taken off of me. Now I just want to concentrate on what I know I can do and what I know my team can do. I tell you what, I am so happy with that Chevy Cavalier. It's awesome right now. I'm the happiest guy here right now. I hadn't even started that engine until I got here. We stuck it in the car yesterday and didn't have any data on it and it ran great. It ran just as good as the other motor we ran. We are completely satisfied with the runs we made today. We're looking forward to the rest of the weekend." No. 1 qualifier - 6.988ET/196.36MPH.
Troy Coughlin (Jeg's Mail Order Chevrolet Cavalier) - "The track was tricky for a lot of the teams. Our guys made some great calls and the Jeg's Chevy Cavalier responded well from start to finish. We did not make as good a run as what we were looking for in the second session. The weather was changing quickly and that probably hurt us. Team Jeg's will be ready tomorrow when the conditions are expected to improve." No. 10 qualifier - 7.021ET/196.27MPH
Jeg Coughlin (Jeg's Mail Order Chevrolet Cavalier)- "Coming out of the trailer and running strong is always great. To do it in front of family, friend, associates at Jeg's and all of the NHRA fans is a great feeling. My car really started moving around a lot down track. Our half-track times looked solid. We will just come out tomorrow and make a better run." No. 20 qualifier