Denver: Jerry Toliver Saturday notes

TOLIVER TAKES NO. 14 IN DENVER QUALIFYING MORRISON, Colo. (July 12, 2008) -- Jerry Toliver qualified the Rockstar Energy Drink Dodge R/T Funny Car No. 14 at the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals at Bandimere Speedway, recording a 4.287-second pass...

TOLIVER TAKES NO. 14 IN DENVER QUALIFYING

MORRISON, Colo. (July 12, 2008) -- Jerry Toliver qualified the Rockstar Energy Drink Dodge R/T Funny Car No. 14 at the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals at Bandimere Speedway, recording a 4.287-second pass at 288.33 mph on Friday evening, his quickest of the weekend.

Toliver also established runs of 4.484/256.99 (No. 11) on his first run Friday, followed by a 5.031/156.08 (No. 11), and a 4.292/289.63 (No. 14) on Saturday.

The Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals marked the first time in NHRA history that racing for the fuel cars was limited to the 1000-foot mark instead of the traditional 1320 feet (quarter-mile).

"We're a little disappointed with qualifying," said Toliver. "We wound up 14th and we've got to qualify better to get this Rockstar Energy Drink Dodge turned around. But, once again, anything can happen on race day. It's a hot, sticky race track out there and it's tricky conditions. We've got a consistent race car; we just need to speed it up a little bit and we'll have a very good race car.

"I've got a lot of confidence going into tomorrow. The Rockstar Energy Drink guys did a great job and we made it down this race track three out of four runs. So we'll take what we've got and go."

Toliver had mixed emotions about racing to 1000 feet. "The difference is that it's much shorter, and right about the time you have to click it off is when these cars really start getting it on. You pick up a lot of speed in that last 320 feet and seven-tenths of a second. There's no real difference except that you click the car off early.

"I don't like racing to 1000 feet, but I'm all for going to 1000 feet right now until they figure out a way to slow these cars down and make drag racing safer for us drivers. I applaud NHRA for doing this. Do I want to race to 1000 feet from now on? No, absolutely not. I want them to come up with a solution to slow these cars down and go back to the quarter-mile race track we are used to."

Toliver will race against No. 3 qualifier Cruz Pedregon in the first round of Sunday's eliminations, which begin at noon.

-credit: dsr

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Series NHRA
Drivers Cruz Pedregon , Jerry Toliver