Cory McClenathan - Pomona Shootout preview

McClenathan after $100,000 payday. POMONA, Calif. -- Cory McClenathan, from Anaheim, Calif., driver of the Henkelman & Baca Berryman B-12 Chemtooler Top Fuel Dragster, will be among eight Top Fuel drivers vying for a $100,000 payday on ...

McClenathan after $100,000 payday.

POMONA, Calif. -- Cory McClenathan, from Anaheim, Calif., driver of the Henkelman & Baca Berryman B-12 Chemtooler Top Fuel Dragster, will be among eight Top Fuel drivers vying for a $100,000 payday on Saturday, November 9, at the 18th annual Budweiser Shootout at Pomona (Raceway) in Pomona, Calif., a special event during the NHRA Automobile Club of Southern California Finals.

Throughout the season, during qualifying, the Top Fuel drivers earn anywhere from 175 points down to 85 points depending on where they qualify. The higher you qualify, the more points you earn. If you fail to qualify or do not race at a national event, you do not earn any points. The eight Top Fuel drivers accumulating the most points during qualifying beginning at last season's Automobile Club of Southern California Finals through and including the most recent event on the 2002 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series schedule, the NHRA AC-Delco Las Vegas Nationals, will be competing Saturday for a race-day purse of $147,000, with $100,000 going to the winner of this year's Bud Shootout.

With Budweiser Shootout rounds scheduled for 12:15 p.m., 2 p.m. and the final round at 4 p.m., this year's opening round match-ups are as follows: Kenny Bernstein, who finished #1 in Bud Shootout points, will meet Darrell Russell (#8), the 2000 Bud Shootout runner-up ; #2 Larry Dixon, who won last year's rain-delayed Budweiser Shootout at Pomona and has clinched the 2002 Top Fuel POWERade point championship, will square off against Doug Herbert (#7); #3 Doug Kalitta, a former USAC National Sprint Car champion and 2001 Bud Shootout runner-up, is matched against newcomer Andrew Cowin, who qualified #6 in his first bid for a Bud Shootout title; and #4 point earner Tony Schumacher will take on the Berryman B-12 Chemtooler Top Fueler of veteran Cory McClenathan, who earned the fifth qualifying position.

Of the drivers competing in the 18th edition of the Budweiser Shootout at Pomona, McClenathan, competing in his 10th Bud Shootout, is second only to Bernstein in total number of Budweiser Shootouts appearances. Overall, McClenathan is fourth on the all-time Bud Shootout appearance list. Joe Amato (retired) holds top honors with 16 appearances; Bernstein is second with 13, including this year's appearance; and Eddie Hill (retired) holds third with 11 appearances.

Since turning professional in 1991, McClenathan has missed only the 1991 and 2001 Bud Shootout. McClenathan has reached the Bud Shootout final round three times ('96, '94 and '92), finishing runner-up in all three.

In addition to the $100,000 that a driver earns for winning the Budweiser Shootout at Pomona, he can also win a $50,000 "double-up" bonus from NHRA by winning both the Shootout and the Top Fuel title at the Automobile Club of Southern California Finals during eliminations on Sunday. The bottom line is that if you win the Bud Shootout and the event title your payday would be in the $200,000 range.

"At the start of this season no one thought that this Henkelman and Baca team would have a chance to make the Bud Shootout," said McClenathan. "Well, this team proved them all wrong. I feel this Berryman Chemtooler dragster has as good a chance as anyone in this year's field to win this thing. For us, we need to be consistent and run the big numbers at the right time.

"Tony (Schumacher) will be a tough first-round opponent, but then they'll all be tough. Nothing would end this season better than to take home the 100 grand from Budweiser. Well maybe winning the shootout and the event and the 'double-up' bonus would top that. 200 grand would be awesome."

Berryman Products, Inc., a privately held company based in Arlington, Texas, manufactures and distributes the highest quality professional automotive chemical products throughout the US and internationally. With warehouse facilities in Alabama, Texas and California, Berryman products are sold to major auto parts chains, mass merchants and wholesale suppliers, independent automotive repair shops and car dealers. To learn more visit their website at or contact the company at 800-433-1704.


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Series NHRA
Drivers Doug Herbert , Kenny Bernstein , Tony Schumacher , Joe Amato , Doug Kalitta , Andrew Cowin , Cory McClenathan