Dallas Richie Steven First Round Report

Stevens slips through Round 1 DALLAS (April 23) - Richie "The Kid" Stevens opened his qualifying effort for a spot in the field of the Third Annual Lone Star Nationals presented by O'Reilly Auto Parts much the way the majority of ...

Stevens slips through Round 1

DALLAS (April 23) - Richie "The Kid" Stevens opened his qualifying effort for a spot in the field of the Third Annual Lone Star Nationals presented by O'Reilly Auto Parts much the way the majority of his contemporaries did - with an uncompleted first round lap. The usually sticky surface of the all-concrete Texas Motorplex drag strip appeared to be covered with Teflon in the opening stanza with over half of the pro-level cars losing traction during their Round 1 passes.

A native of New Orleans, Stevens managed to get to the midway point on the track before his car began to swerve out of the groove. Realizing that he couldn't salvage the pass, he decided to shut his car off, eventually coasting through the timing lights in 8.074 seconds at 125.71 mph.

"I don't know what was wrong out there," Stevens said. "There must have been a problem with the track because everybody was getting loose at the same spot, just before half-track. My car started shaking at about 600 feet and I thought for a minute that I could drive through it. Then it shook even harder to the point where the car shut off for a second. By the time it restarted I knew we weren't going to post any sort of competitive time so I just let off the accelerator and cruised on through the finish line.

"We need to get set for tonight because it could be the best session of the weekend and I don't want to let it go without posting a top-half time. If the track stays the way it is, lane choice will be really important on Sunday, which means we better qualify in the top half of the field so that we can pick the side we want."

Stevens is currently in 20th place on the qualifying ladder with three rounds of racing left to be contested.

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Series NHRA