Englishtown: Post-race notes

Post Race Notes: 34th Annual K&N Filters Supernationals Presented By Pep Boys May 15-18, Old Bridge Township Raceway Park, Englishtown, N.J. TOP FUEL * Doug Kalitta, from Ann Arbor, Mich., captured his second victory of the season and...

Post Race Notes:
34th Annual K&N Filters Supernationals Presented By Pep Boys
May 15-18, Old Bridge Township Raceway Park, Englishtown, N.J.


* Doug Kalitta, from Ann Arbor, Mich., captured his second victory of the season and 13th of his career when he defeated points leader Larry Dixon in the final round. Kalitta, whose slowest pass during eliminations was 4.544 seconds, blasted his Mac Tools dragster to a run of 4.494 seconds at 328.54 mph to edge out Dixon's Miller Lite dragster, which turned in a run of 4.554 at 326.40.

* Kalitta earned his sixth No. 1 qualifying position in the first eight races of the season, turning in a run of 4.511 at 327.59 to lead the 16-car field. In a semifinal victory over Paul Romine, Kalitta recorded both the track E.T. and speed record with a run of 4.481 at 330.63.

* In the first round of eliminations, 2003 Rookie of the Year candidate Brandon Bernstein's Budweiser/Lucas Oil dragster went out of control and crashed near half-track. Bernstein was transported to Robert Wood Johnson Medical Center with injuries to his lower back. Bernstein is expected to miss two to three months of action. His father and six-time NHRA champion Kenny Bernstein will resume driving duties of the dragster beginning at Topeka, Kan. Kenny retired following the 2002 NHRA season.

* Tony Schumacher, driver of the U.S. Army dragster, failed to qualify for Sunday's eliminations. It marked the first time in 102 events (Reading, Pa., 1998) that Schumacher didn't compete in eliminations. Schumacher's best pass of the weekend was 5.423-seconds, good enough for the No. 19 position. Also, Rhonda Hartman-Smith failed to record a pass quick enough to crack the 16-car field.

* David Baca earned a $1,000 bonus by winning the Motel 6 'Who Got the Light' award when he defeated Scott Weis by 0.0104 of-a-second margin of victory in the first round of eliminations.

* Dixon remains atop the POWERade points standings and leads Bernstein by 94 points and Kalitta by 147 points.


* Whit Bazemore, from Indianapolis, earned his 13th career victory and first in more than a year when he powered his Matco Tools Dodge Stratus to the victory over Ron Capps' Skoal Chevy Camaro. Bazemore's Dodge used a consistent 4.8-second tune-up and a final round pass of 4.869 at 306.81 to outdistance Capps' Chevy, which lost traction and slowed to a run of 8.300 at 100.52. Bazemore's victory marks the first time since September 1998 (Reading, Pa.) that a Dodge has won in Funny Car.

* Tony Pedregon, from Chino Hills, Calif. recorded his fourth No. 1 qualifying award of the season when he powered his Castrol Syntec Ford Mustang to a track E.T. record run of 4.760 at 322.50. Pedregon, who fell in the semifinals to Bazemore, was the only No. 1 qualifier not to win at Englishtown.

* In the opening round of eliminations, veteran driver Gary Scelzi recorded the fastest Funny Car speed in NHRA history when he drove his Oakley Dodge Stratus to a run of 326.95 mph in a victory over teammate Scotty Cannon. Scelzi failed to certify the run within the required one-percent to establish a national record.

* With the victory, Bazemore now trails Pedregon by 72 points.


* Greg Anderson, from Concord, N.C., capped off a dominant weekend by earning his second consecutive victory at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park. Anderson drove his Vegas General Construction Pontiac Grand Am to a pass of 6.724 at 205.98 to edge Darrell Alderman, who clocked a run of 6.747 at 205.38 in his Team Mopar Dodge Neon.

* Anderson earned his second consecutive and third No. 1 qualifying position of the season when he drove his Grand Am to a run of 6.684 at 207.08. Anderson's blast was the first Pro Stock pass in the 6.6-second range and the 207 mph zone.

* Anderson established both the E.T. and speed national record when he recorded a pass of 6.670 at 207.18 in a second round victory over Terry Adams. For establishing the E.T. record, Anderson earned 20 bonus POWERade points.

* Pro Stock points leader Kurt Johnson earned a $50,000 bonus by winning the King Demon Crown for the third time in his career. Anderson piloted his ACDelco Chevy Cavalier to a pass of 6.753 at 205.60 to defeat Anderson, whose Pontiac lost traction and slowed to a run of 7.631 at 135.04.

* By virtue of winning the event and setting the national E.T. record, Anderson reclaimed the points lead and leads K. Johnson by 10 points.

* Notable DNQ's: Mike Edwards, V. Gaines, Larry Morgan, Mark Whisnant, George Marnell and Bruce Allen.

* The field at the K&N Filters SuperNationals presented by Pep Boys was the quickest Pro Stock field in NHRA history. Anderson's 6.684-second blast led the pack, while Greg Stanfield's Dodge anchored the field with a run of 6.741. It eclipses the old 6.792-second bump spot set at the O'Reilly Spring Nationals at Houston Raceway Park in April.


* Shawn Gann, from Stoneville, N.C., captured his second career victory and first since Oct. 2001 when he rode his Mac Tools Suzuki to the victory over Craig Treble. Gann rode his Suzuki to a run of 7.100 at 188.49 to knock off Treble, whose Matco Tools Suzuki suffered mechanical problems and slowed to a run of 7.752 at 130.32.

* Gann recorded his third career No. 1 qualifying award by clocking a run of 7.051, 189.28, the second quickest elapsed time in NHRA history. His pass was just two thousandths of-a-second behind Angelle Savoie's 7.049 national E.T. record.

* Gann's victory moved him into second position in the Pro Stock Bike standings. He trails points leader Geno Scali by 24 points and leads three-time consecutive series champion Savoie by two points.

* The Pro Stock Bike field at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park also was the quickest field in NHRA history. Gann led the 16-bike field with his 7.051 run, while Chris Reuter used a pass of 7.207 to qualify in the No. 16 spot. This eclipsed the previous record bump spot of 7.267 seconds at Baytown, Texas in April.


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Series NHRA
Drivers Paul Romine , Larry Dixon , Darrell Alderman , Kenny Bernstein , Kurt Johnson , Scott Weis , Tony Pedregon , Whit Bazemore , Ron Capps , Rhonda Hartman-Smith , Tony Schumacher , Gary Scelzi , Doug Kalitta , Greg Anderson , Larry Morgan , Shawn Gann , David Baca , Scotty Cannon , Craig Treble , Greg Stanfield , Bruce Allen , Geno Scali , Brandon Bernstein , George Marnell , Terry Adams , Chris Reuter , Mark Whisnant , Mike Edwards