SUZUKI RIDER ELLIS QUALIFIES NO. 2 FOR FIFTH TIME IN EIGHT RACES MORRISON, Colo. (July 12, 2008) -- Chip Ellis qualified the Schumacher Electric Suzuki No. 2 for the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals at Bandimere Speedway, equaling the quickest ...
SUZUKI RIDER ELLIS QUALIFIES NO. 2 FOR FIFTH TIME IN EIGHT RACES
MORRISON, Colo. (July 12, 2008) -- Chip Ellis qualified the Schumacher Electric Suzuki No. 2 for the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals at Bandimere Speedway, equaling the quickest elapsed time of the weekend in the Pro Stock Motorcycle class with a 7.328-second elapsed time at 181.28 mph on his third qualifying attempt. Ellis missed the top spot due to a slower speed, but qualified No. 2 for the fifth time this season in eight events on his Steve Tartaglia-tuned Suzuki.
Ellis qualified for his 58th consecutive NHRA event with the effort and has never failed to make the field since he began racing in the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series in 2004.
The Florida native began the weekend with a 7.488/176.49 (No. 6) as Steve Tartaglia battled with the heat and the mile-high altitude. Ellis remained consistent on his second run with a 7.485/177.56 (No. 8), and on his final pass he recorded a 7.354/179.80.
The weather played a part in the performance of the Schumacher Electric Suzuki between Friday's and Saturday's qualifying sessions. "The air temperature was the biggest difference in our performance," said Ellis.
"I've noticed that traditionally we seem to get off to a slow start during qualifying on Fridays. We're not always as good as we probably could be. Steve seems to get a handle on things and, for whatever reason, I ride better on Saturday. I think both of us just need a pass or two to get warmed up.
"If you would have asked me Thursday if I thought we could have qualified in the top five I would have said maybe fifth or so because I thought the Buells and the Harleys would be heads and tails over the Suzukis. But Steve Tartaglia proved me wrong and he did a great job. We tied Eddie Krawiec for low ET and he just beat us by about a half a mile per hour for the No. 1 spot. I'm just happy to be running that well, but on the other side it is disappointing to run exactly the same time and get bumped by a little bit. But it's OK. We're making leaps and bounds in our program and I'm excited to be here.
"My hat is off to Steve and the guys who work on the bike. They gave me a great bike to ride today and I know they'll give me a great bike to ride tomorrow. We proved we have a fast motorcycle and I think we're very capable of going four rounds tomorrow."
Ellis will race against No. 15 qualifier Peggy Llewellyn in the first round of Sunday's eliminations, which begin at noon.