CAPPS MOVES INTO TIE FOR SEVENTH PLACE WITH QUARTERFINAL FINISH IN DENVER MORRISON, Colo. (July 13, 200) - Ron Capps drove the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car into the quarterfinals today at at the Mopar Mile-High Nationals at ...
CAPPS MOVES INTO TIE FOR SEVENTH PLACE WITH QUARTERFINAL FINISH IN DENVER
MORRISON, Colo. (July 13, 200) - Ron Capps drove the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car into the quarterfinals today at at the Mopar Mile-High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway and moved into a tie for seventh place in the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series point standings with Gary Densham.
Racing for the first time in NHRA pro nitro history to the 1000-ft. mark instead of to a 1320-ft. finish line, Capps dismissed Bob Tasca III in the opening round of eliminations in a close contest. Without lane choice, No. 11 qualifier Capps outran Tasca by five feet to take the victory with a 4.525-second pass at 241.41 mph.
He then met up with Cruz Pedregon in the quarterfinal. Again without lane choice, he was defeated after striking the tires and slowing to a 5.330/143.69 lap to Pedregon's winning 4.388/276.18.
"It's all a product of yesterday's final qualifying session when I shut the NAPA Dodge off early," said Capps. "Basically everything that happened today I have to take the blame for. Had I not shut it off early yesterday it would have moved us up well near the top, if not the top, of the qualifying order, and we would have had lane choice first round.
"Throughout the weekend lane choice didn't seem like it was that big of a deal. There were a couple of really small bumps in the right lane and that's why you saw a lot of cars pulling the tires loose and we did the same.
"Had we had lane choice first round it would have been a much better deal and we might have run better to earn lane choice for the second round. I'll take the blame for this one. We got lucky in the first round. It's just a part of it.
"I already talked to a few drivers who had a hard time finding the actual finish line at 1000 feet. In the nighttime I did, but during the day the clutch just starts coming in and it's really hard to find the finish line. So I'm hoping they'll put some lines across the track. There's a small reflector that they put on the guardrail, but it's so hard to catch that during the day.
"But, I have to tell you, 1000-ft. racing, all in all, was great, more than anything for the fans. The lack of oildowns and the super-quick sessions that allowed the fans to get back to the pit area and see their drivers was great.
"I've read some stuff where some fans were upset and weren't going to follow our sport. They weren't with us Thursday night two weeks ago at Scott Kalitta's memorial service. And if they were they'd have a different outlook on it. It's all very small in comparison to Americans fighting overseas and all the stuff going on, so they need to be fans of ours through thick or thin. And now it's a little bit thin until we can figure out what happened with Scott. I want the fans to be on board with us until we figure it out."