ENGLISHTOWN, N.J. (May 19, 2001) - Dean Skuza wielded his Mopar Parts/Cornwell Tools Dodge R/T Nitro Funny Car to the third-qualifying position during the first day of activity at this weekend's Matco Tools SuperNationals at Old Bridge Township ...
ENGLISHTOWN, N.J. (May 19, 2001) - Dean Skuza wielded his Mopar Parts/Cornwell Tools Dodge R/T Nitro Funny Car to the third-qualifying position during the first day of activity at this weekend's Matco Tools SuperNationals at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park.
After posting a solid 4.885-second lap in the first session, the Brecksville, Ohio resident laid down his second quickest run of the season with a 4.833-second elapsed time at 312.21 mph. Skuza clocked a 4.805-second lap during the national event in Phoenix earlier this year.
"We were trying to run the same 4.80 like we in Phoenix," Skuza said. "The clutch slipped a bit on the run, or we would have done it. The track is in great shape and I think we'll have a shot at it tomorrow with the right weather conditions. Overall, we have to be happy."
Back on Track
Darrell Alderman, after not making the last two NHRA national events, drove his Hemi-powered Mopar Parts Dodge R/T to the fifth position after day one of Pro Stock qualifying.
The three-time Winston Pro Stock World Champion drove to a 6.855-second elapsed time at 200.08 mph.
"We made a decent run," Alderman stated. "I think we could have run a little better though. The clutch didn't come in like I thought, but we're back on the right track. We'll keep tuning on it and see what tomorrow brings."
Alderman's teammate Mark Osborne, who drives the other Mopar Parts-sponsored Dodge R/T Pro Stock entry, slipped into the 11th-qualifying position with a 6.875-second lap at 200.56 mph.
"I'm just happy to survive the night session," Osborne quoted. "My car was a little slow off the line and I didn't drive as well as I should have, but we're in a good position. It's a big relief to be in the show right now with both cars."
Brett Fischer, drag racing program manager for DaimlerChrysler, talked a little about the weekend thus far.
"Surprisingly, our old Dodge's are keeping up with the newer cars pretty well," said Fischer, commenting in the performance of the elder 2000 Dodge R/T models. "To be honest, I'm a little surprised were keeping up with them like we are. I would be embarrassed if our new Neons run like their cars have been."
The new Pro Stock Neons are only a few weeks from debuting.
Morgan Ekes In
Larry Morgan, despite suffering from mechanical problems, was still able to place his Dodge Motorsports R/T Pro Stock machine into the 13th-qualifying position.
The Newark, Ohio resident managed a 6.892-second elapsed time at 199.94 mph.
"We're real lucky that were in the show," Morgan said. "We're still having the same problems that we've been having. The engine has a malfunctioning cylinder and it's eating itself alive. We're going to take some time and figure out the problem."
Smith Qualifies 10th
Rickie Smith, who will soon be running a semi-factory backed Mopar Parts Dodge Neon, drove to the 10th-qualifying position after posting a 6.869-second lap at 200.59 mph.
"We made a pretty good run," Smith said. "We didn't have much left in it, so I don't think we want to do that again. We may try some things for tomorrow, but not too much, in case the conditions are good. We probably would have run better if we had a little Dodge power under us.
Kenny Koretsky, owner and driver of Team Koretsky, missed the show with a 6.936/198.96 combination.