Martino Moments Final results from the NHRA O'Reilly Fall Nationals Martino opens by exacting revenge, but then proves to be too quick in the second round in Dallas Date: Sunday, October 30, 2001 Location: Texas Motorplex, Ennis, TX CENTURY...
Final results from the NHRA O'Reilly Fall Nationals
Martino opens by exacting revenge, but then proves to be too quick in the second round in Dallas
Date: Sunday, October 30, 2001
Location: Texas Motorplex, Ennis, TX
CENTURY 21 Grand Am pilot Tom Martino is acknowledged as one of the top drivers in the NHRA's Pro Stock division, with his lightning-quick reaction times often leading to impressive wins over quicker opponents. Martino arrived in Dallas fresh off a final round appearance in Reading that included hole-shot wins over two drivers who had recorded 6.7-second elapsed times. Sunday's final eliminations of the NHRA O'Reilly Fall Nationals featured a rematch of the final round from two weeks ago with Martino facing Troy Coughlin. Much like their encounter from two weeks earlier, Martino used a stellar .411 reaction time to gain over a tenth of a second advantage over his rival, and then ensured his win by recording a 6.923-second elapsed time to his opponent's 6.951-second effort.
In the second round, Martino faced another tough foe in Vieri Gaines, and would do so without the benefit of lane choice. Knowing he would need every advantage to advance, Martino looked for another quick start. Unfortunately, his reaction time proved to be too fast, as he left before the green lights flashed, handing the automatic win to Gaines despite the fact that his 6.935-second, 199.60 mph effort was three thousandths quicker than his competitor's.
"I wanted to get a good start, because we had been slightly off on the tune-up all weekend. I would love to blame the loss on a mechanical failure, but it was simply driver error. I staged, put it on the chip, suffered some brain and let the clutch out early. Fortunately, despite being off our game on a fast race track, we were able to put ourselves solidly in the show on Friday, and scored a round win today. We'll move on to Vegas next week and see if we can string a few rounds together. We have two races left with CENTURY 21, and we'd certainly like to give them another win before we're done."