Commerce: David Baca final summary

Baca disappointed with opening round loss Commerce, Ga. (May 16, 2004) -- David Baca, driver of the Henkelman & Baca Motorsports American Racing Top Fuel dragster, fell victim to Brandon Bernstein in the opening round of eliminations, today, at...

Baca disappointed with opening round loss

Commerce, Ga. (May 16, 2004) -- David Baca, driver of the Henkelman & Baca Motorsports American Racing Top Fuel dragster, fell victim to Brandon Bernstein in the opening round of eliminations, today, at the NHRA Summit Racing Equipment Southern Nationals presented by Pontiac.

Baca did his job at the starting line and was away first at the green light, gaining four-hundredths of a second advantage. Just before half-track Baca lost traction and could only watch as Bernstein raced to the win light.

Bernstein cruised the Atlanta Dragway quarter-mile in 4.602 seconds, his best run of the weekend. Baca, after losing traction, coasted to an elapsed time of 5.549 seconds.

"I got away first at the start and by the 330-foot mark I couldn't see him," said Baca following the run. "Then near half-track, I felt it go away big time and the race was over."

This was the first career meeting between last year's contenders for Automobile Club of Southern California Road to the Future Award (Rookie of the Year), which was won by Bernstein.

With his father, Dennis, attending a national event for the first time in 24 years and seeing his son race for the first time as a professional, Baca naturally wanted to do better.

"Yes, I wanted to do better but the main thing was that my father and I were together at the races. He had fun and I hope to have him back to a lot more this year. It's always disappointing to lose, but we'll gather it up and go on to the next one," reflected Baca after the loss.

After the dust settled and the finals were completed at Atlanta, Baca ended the day with 306 points, good for the 11th position in the NHRA POWERade Top Fuel point standings. Baca is currently just four points out of 10th and 106 behind fifth.

Up next for Baca is the seventh annual NHRA Route 66 Nationals, the second of back-to-back-to-back races and the second of six races in a seven week span on the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series. The event will take place at Route 66 Raceway, a state-of-the-art motorsport facility in Joliet, Ill., about 30 miles from downtown Chicago.

-h&bm-

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers David Baca , Brandon Bernstein