Baytown, Texas - - At the time he made his second run of qualifying, Rickie Smith, driver of the KPK Motorsports Pro Stock Camaro, owned by Pro Stock campaigner Kenny Koretsky, had been knocked down to 18th position on the qualifying ladder....
Baytown, Texas - - At the time he made his second run of qualifying, Rickie Smith, driver of the KPK Motorsports Pro Stock Camaro, owned by Pro Stock campaigner Kenny Koretsky, had been knocked down to 18th position on the qualifying ladder. After the run, and a stout performance from the Frank Iaconio-built engine produced a pass of 6.892 seconds at 198.70 mph, Smith found himself in third place at the end of two of four qualifying sessions at the O'Reilly Nationals presented by Pennzoil at Houston Raceway Park.
"We tested the engine this week in Darlington, S.C., and felt we had the power to compete with the best at Houston. That pass confirmed the results of the testing," said Smith. "There are still two sessions left of qualifying and we want to continue to improve. My Camaro has done well but it's all too competitive in Pro Stock. A hundredth, or even a thousandth, can make the difference in making the field or going home."
Smith, 46, from King, N.C., has had previous success at Houston Raceway Park. His last victory came here in October of 1999 at the Matco Tools SuperNationals. Smith, now in his 24th year of competition, has recorded two career wins in eight final rounds.
KPK Motorsports, with Rickie Smith at the wheel, plans to run all remaining races on the NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series for 2000. The team will also field a second car at selected NHRA events. Car owner Ken Koretsky will handle the driving duties on the second entry.