Ashley holds on to No. 3 in Countdown points after early exit in Denver MORRISON, Colo. (July 15, 2007) - Mike Ashley held onto third place in NHRA POWERade Funny Car points standings, critical for qualification in the Countdown for the ...
Ashley holds on to No. 3 in Countdown points after early exit in Denver
MORRISON, Colo. (July 15, 2007) - Mike Ashley held onto third place in NHRA POWERade Funny Car points standings, critical for qualification in the Countdown for the Championship, despite losing in the first round of today's Mopar Mile High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway just outside of Denver, Colo.
In his first round pairing against Tony Pedregon, Ashley's Torco Race Fuels Dodge Charger R/T overpowered the 136-degree racetrack just past the 300-foot mark causing the tires to lose traction and giving Pedregon the win, 5.128/272.01 to Ashley's 6.117/167.91.
"We had everything working well, but the elements just got the best of us. Brian Corradi really had a handle on this mountain, but we just couldn't put it all together today," Ashley said.
The 41-year-old mortgage banker from Long Island, New York started the day from the No. 3 qualifying position, maintaining the momentum Team Gotham has built since winning his second event this year just two weeks ago in Norwalk, Ohio.
"This is the first time we've gone out in the first round since Las Vegas, so it was really out of character for our team. It was a disappointing finish, but we're still number three in the Countdown, and, this is a marathon, not a sprint," he said.
The first part of the Countdown to the Championship is essentially a 17-race "regular season" in which the full field of drivers in each pro category is reduced to eight who remain eligible for the 2007 POWERade Series world championship. With just four races left in the Countdown to Eight, Ashley knows every round is critical to qualifying for the playoffs.
"We've spent time working on several things that bothered us this weekend, and we'll be ready to tackle it again next weekend in Seattle," Ashley said.