ENNIS, Texas, May 23, 2000 - It really wasn't the kind of weekend you'd expect to find some positives, but Doug Herbert and the Snap-on Racing team did just that at rainy, cold and uncomfortable Englishtown, N.J. Now, Herbert and crew...
ENNIS, Texas, May 23, 2000 - It really wasn't the kind of weekend you'd expect to find some positives, but Doug Herbert and the Snap-on Racing team did just that at rainy, cold and uncomfortable Englishtown, N.J.
Now, Herbert and crew chief Larry Frazier must apply the new information to the all-concrete Texas Motorplex track, Friday through Sunday, during the Castrol Nationals. They didn't get an opportunity to do so in New Jersey last weekend because the inclement weather postponed the Spring SuperNationals until September.
"We had our best run of the season to half-track during Saturday's qualifying run at Englishtown," Herbert said. "I think we are closer to getting the tune-up worked out. We had a new fuel system and the results came from those changes. Now there are a couple clutch changes we have up our sleeve that we want to try.
"The Motorplex would be a good place to try them. The track is very good and it would be nice to get some runs so we can verify what we learned."
New Jersey weather permitted only two qualifying runs before the fields were set. Herbert's 4.700-second, 292.46-mph clocking was fifth best.
"The car was skating all over the track on that run and I had to lift about 300 feet before the finish line," Herbert recalled. "At least our car went down the track. There were other cars that didn't. Actually, we got down the track on both runs. We ran 4.91 in the first session, and I shut off very early."
Herbert, from Cherryville, N.C., believes the weather conditions will be much better in Texas. "We should be in normal conditions this weekend instead of what we had last weekend," he said.
The Motorplex hasn't been one of Herbert's best tracks. In seven appearances, he's advanced as far as the quarterfinals just twice.
"All that could change with one good outing," he noted.
Herbert remained eighth in the standings with 329 points. Jim Bailey, driver of Herbert's Snap-on Racing IHRA dragster, qualified for the SuperNationals. His 9.375 at 146.15 mph put him ninth overall.
"Unfortunately for us, the weekend NHRA chose to complete the race (Sept. 8-9) conflicts with an IHRA race, and we want Bailey to win the championship over there," Herbert said.
This event is the second of what originally was to be three consecutive races. The Route 66 Nationals are next up, June 2-4, at Joliet, Ill.