Denver: Whit Bazemore eliminations summary

Bazemore slices his funny car points deficit DENVER, Colo. (July 20, 2003) - Whit Bazemore benefited from his teammate Scotty Cannon's defeat of Funny Car points leader Tony Pedregon in the first round of eliminations and by advancing to the ...

Bazemore slices his funny car points deficit

DENVER, Colo. (July 20, 2003) - Whit Bazemore benefited from his teammate Scotty Cannon's defeat of Funny Car points leader Tony Pedregon in the first round of eliminations and by advancing to the second round to cut his points deficit to 124 out of first place (1143-1019).

Driving the Matco Tools-sponsored Mopar 'Bling-Bling' Dodge Stratus Funny Car here at the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals, Bazemore sent Terry Haddock home packing in the first round, ousting him with a 5.118-second pass at 290.94 mph under the heat of the afternoon Colorado sun.

The second round found the two-time winner here at Bandimere Speedway facing Pedregon's team owner John Force. Force lucked out with his .017 reaction time to Bazemore's .084, which could easily have resulted in a red light, but that's all it took for Force to grab the victory with a 5.131-second pass at 290.69 mph to Bazemore's 5.202/278.23.

"We had a great opportunity to make up a lot of points," said Bazemore. "Scotty did a tremendous job in the first round going down the race track and taking him (Pedregon) out and we were just a little bit too conservative against Force. It's a fine line between under-performing and over-performing and smoking the tires. We had to go down the race track and we could have been quite a bit more aggressive as it turns out with our Matco Tools Dodge this weekend and been more competitive against Force. As it was, the numbers weren't there and we got beat."

"I had my best light (reaction time) of the weekend," he added, "and it was equal to my teammate Gary Scelzi's in the first round, and Gary and I virtually had the same 60-foot times. It's frustrating, trust me. I want to be the best all the time at everything I do."

The NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series heads to Seattle next weekend for the CARQUEST Auto Parts NHRA Nationals at Pacific Raceways on July 25-27.

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Series NHRA
Drivers Tony Pedregon , Whit Bazemore , John Force , Gary Scelzi , Scotty Cannon