Doug Herbert Phoenix test preview

Herbert aims to start season quickly in testing Doug Herbert and the Snap-on Tools dragster will test once before season opener CHANDLER, Ariz. -- Doug Herbert has big plans for the Snap-on Tools Top Fuel team in 2005. The North Carolina...

Herbert aims to start season quickly in testing
Doug Herbert and the Snap-on Tools dragster will test once before season opener

CHANDLER, Ariz. -- Doug Herbert has big plans for the Snap-on Tools Top Fuel team in 2005. The North Carolina resident may live in stock car country but he doesn't plan to run around in circles this season.

A new crew chief is just one of the many changes Herbert has made during the offseason. All of the changes, however, are aimed at one goal: Winning NHRA races.

"We hired Rob Flynn and that move has already paid off," Herbert said. "We've hired new crew members and Rob has already pointed the team in a positive direction. It seems like we're already having more fun than we have in the past couple of years and we haven't been to a single national event yet.

"We work some long hours at the shop and the race track, so having fun goes a long way to enjoying the long hours."

Herbert and the rest of the Snap-on Tools dragster team will make the first appearance of the season during the test session at Firebird International Raceway, Jan. 28-30, just outside of downtown Phoenix.

Last year Herbert earned one NHRA victory, taking the win at the fall event at Route 66 Raceway in Chicago. He finished eighth in the points chase for his sixth consecutive top 10 points finish. Still, the results didn't match Herbert's expectations.

"I think we've always had the desire for this team to win more races," Herbert said. "But maybe we just didn't have the right people to turn that desire into winning. Now I think we do have the right people. Rob Flynn seems like he is ready to show the racing world that he is ready to compete at the highest level and I'm just glad he's on this team. Jim Brissette is our tuning consultant and he's been with me for several years and I think Brissette and Flynn are going to be a very competitive combination.

"We have the crew chief, the car, the parts and the crew members to get the job done. I know I am ready and willing to drive the car to a better finish in 2005."

Testing is just the place to see what adjustments need to be made before the NHRA season celebrates its season opener at the CARQUEST Winternationals at Pomona (Calif.) Raceway, Feb. 10-13.

"We want to make sure that we are headed toward the right combination and testing in Phoenix should be the first indication of how we're doing so far," Herbert said. "Testing is always good because it gets you in race mode and a little more fired up for the first race of the season."

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Series NHRA
Drivers Doug Herbert