Clutch Failure Sends Herbert Home Early From U.S. Nationals CLERMONT, Ind., Sept. 3, 2001 - Just when it appeared Doug Herbert and the Snap-on Racing Top Fuel team were on the right track in their bid to win the U.S. Nationals, a faulty clutch...
Clutch Failure Sends Herbert Home Early From U.S. Nationals
CLERMONT, Ind., Sept. 3, 2001 - Just when it appeared Doug Herbert and the Snap-on Racing Top Fuel team were on the right track in their bid to win the U.S. Nationals, a faulty clutch ended their day Monday at Indianapolis Raceway Park.
After experimenting with new cylinder heads and a supercharger, Herbert and crew chief Larry Frazier opted to return to the older parts and the car's performance immediately responded. His 4.610-second run at 319.82 mph was second quickest in Sunday's first qualifying session and Herbert's best run of the weekend. He followed with a 4.630 in the final session, and that was fourth quickest and began eliminations from the No. 10 position.
The clutch didn't work properly in the first round against Tim Gibson and Herbert's time slowed to a 4.697 at 313.66 while Gibson ran 4.676 at 307.86.
"That was disappointing," Herbert said. "We thought it would run a mid-to-low 4.60 (seconds) on that first run but we blew through the clutch and that slowed us down."
The early setback prevented Herbert from gaining any ground on sixth place Darrell Russell in NHRA Winston Series standings. He remains seventh at 965.
Herbert's best run in the first three sessions using the new parts was 4.701 seconds.
Herbert and the Snap-on crew return to NHRA Winston Series action at the Keystone Nationals, Sept. 14-16, at Reading, Pa.
Qualified: No. 10, 4.610 seconds at 319.82 mph.
First round: Tim Gibson def. Doug Herbert
Race winners: Larry Dixon, Top Fuel; Whit Bazemore, Funny Car; Greg Anderson, Pro Stock