ENGLISHTOWN, NJ (May 20) - With only two of the customary four qualifying runs completed due to weather Friday and Saturday, Larry Dixon's lap of 4.644 seconds at 311.70 mph recorded Friday night kept him on the pole for Sunday's...
ENGLISHTOWN, NJ (May 20) - With only two of the customary four qualifying runs completed due to weather Friday and Saturday, Larry Dixon's lap of 4.644 seconds at 311.70 mph recorded Friday night kept him on the pole for Sunday's elimination round at the 31st annual Matco Tools Spring SuperNationals. An additional qualifying session for both top fuel and funny car is scheduled for 11 AM Sunday morning, with eliminations scheduled to begin at 1 PM.
Unlike the rain that cancelled Friday's early qualifying session, it was bitter cold that limited the top fuel field to just one session on Saturday. The extreme temperature wreaked havoc on the 15-car top fuel field's Goodyear tires, blistering them and creating a serious safety issue that kept the teams from making a second pass down Old Bridge Township Raceway Park.
Entering Saturday as the No. 1 seed, Crew Chief Dick LaHaie continued his consistent tune-up as the Miller Lite Dragster also recorded the quickest pass of the day on Saturday with a time of 4.699 seconds at 278.35 mph. If Dixon goes on to win pole, it will mark the second time he has been the top qualifier at Englishtown. His first pole came in 1995 with his national record time of 4.665 seconds. Dixon would also go on to win the event, marking the third victory of his career.
"To be able to make two runs in the 60s (4.60 seconds) under these conditions, to finish as the number one qualifier would just be icing on the cake," said a happy Dixon. Dick LaHaie is really on the money. He has his game face on. Last night we had no trouble with the track or the tires. Tonight, we got out of the groove and it blistered the tires real good. The track is real tight. When we ran a speed of 311 mph on Friday, the car did not even reach 8,000 rpm, so we only should have reached a speed of 290 mph. That shows you how tight the track is and that the car was really hooked up."