Englishtown: Martino wrap up

After qualifying 9th, Tom Martino knew he would have his work cut out for him in Saturday's completion of the Matco Tools Spring SuperNationals. In the opening round of final eliminations, Martino faced longtime rival Jim Yates without the ...

After qualifying 9th, Tom Martino knew he would have his work cut out for him in Saturday's completion of the Matco Tools Spring SuperNationals. In the opening round of final eliminations, Martino faced longtime rival Jim Yates without the benefit of lane choice. However, the CENTURY 21 Firebird pilot quickly grabbed the lead by more than five hundredths of a second at the start and never looked back, using a strong 6.983-second, 197.51 mph pass to hold off Yates' quicker run and score a trademark Martino hole-shot win. This matched Martino against current Winston points leader and No. 1 qualifier Jeg Coughlin Jr. in the second round. Martino's hopes for a second consecutive upset win quickly evaporated, however, as he had to fight to keep his car under control almost immediately after launching, and was unable to chase down his opponent despite his best efforts. "We were pretty happy with our run in the first round. Other than moving around a little in fourth and fifth gear, we thought it was a pretty good pass. Based on the data from that run, we took five pounds off the nose of the CENTURY 21 Firebird for the second round against Jeggie. Unfortunately, it stood way up in the air right at the start and immediately hooked a hard left. I tried to bring it back but finally had to click it off. As of right now, we have no idea why it reacted that way. I guess that first pass was closer to not getting down the track than we thought.

"However, it felt good to get a round win. I was starting to worry that they might be shutting off the win lights in our lane when we ran! We're going to stay and test here tomorrow trying to fine-tune our set-up even more. After that, we have a lot of work to do back at the shop before we head to Reading for next weekend's race. We'll be spending some long hours in a short week, but we'll be ready."

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Jeg Coughlin , Tom Martino