TROXEL WELL-PREPARED FOR U.S. NATIONALS ELIMINATIONS CLERMONT, Ind. (Sept. 3, 2006) - NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series Top Fuel championship contender Melanie Troxel heads into Monday's final eliminations for the U.S. Nationals at O'Reilly...
TROXEL WELL-PREPARED FOR U.S. NATIONALS ELIMINATIONS
CLERMONT, Ind. (Sept. 3, 2006) - NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series Top Fuel championship contender Melanie Troxel heads into Monday's final eliminations for the U.S. Nationals at O'Reilly Raceway Park at Indianapolis in great shape by qualifying the Skull Shine/Knoll Gas-Torco Race Fuels Top Fuel dragster in the No. 5 position.
Troxel began the qualifying rounds by posting three-straight runs in the .50s, beginning Friday evening with a personal weekend-best of 4.521 seconds at 326.08 mph, followed on Saturday by a 4.582/323.66 and a 4.587/324.12. She lost traction at 100 feet on her fourth run, resulting in a 6.884/110.31. She then completed qualifying strong with a 4.602/320.66, fourth best of the session.
"I feel like we have a consistent race car," said Avon resident Troxel, fourth in championship points. "We came out in the first session and put a really good number down. That really helped us stay up there in the qualifying order for race day.
"We kind of missed out on that Saturday night session (when conditions were favorable), but there is something to be said about going down the race track, and we have done that four out of five runs. We have a consistent car, and a good qualifying spot. That is part of the battle, having a decent spot to start from. We'll go into Monday and see what we can do."
Troxel feels this is her best shot thus far at a U.S. Nationals win. "Last year at this time we were still going through a learning curve trying to get adjusted to a lot of new equipment, so we're way ahead of where we were last year. We're better prepared than we have ever been here," she said.
Her plan for race day? "Every time on race day the goal is stay focused on the job at hand, which is going up there for first round and getting past it. Once you get rolling, everything seems to go a little easier.
"Indy is a big race, so we'll just have to filter out some of that distraction. We have to treat tomorrow as no different (than any other race), and just focus on doing our job."
She faces Alan Bradshaw in the first round of final eliminations.