Warren Johnson's SC/T Pontiac leads first day qualifiers at U.S. Nationals. INDIANAPOLIS, August 30, 2002 - There's no place like Indianapolis Raceway Park for six-time U.S. Nationals champion Warren Johnson. The GM Performance Parts Pontiac ...
Warren Johnson's SC/T Pontiac leads first day qualifiers at U.S. Nationals.
INDIANAPOLIS, August 30, 2002 - There's no place like Indianapolis Raceway Park for six-time U.S. Nationals champion Warren Johnson. The GM Performance Parts Pontiac driver fired an impressive volley during today's lone qualifying session by setting both ends of the IRP track record with a run of 6.843 seconds at 201.04 mph. In setting the track-record speed, Johnson's Pontiac SC/T Grand Am became the first Pro Stock Car to exceed 201 mph at Indianapolis Raceway Park.
"Since NHRA resurfaced this track it has become more like a Houston, Dallas or Topeka track - it is a very smooth racetrack," explained Johnson. "So, really all you have to take into consideration is the temperature of the track, how much rubber is on the track and then go out and try and have a clean run. This track is actually equivalent to Englishtown when we were running elapsed times in the 6.70s. The only thing different was that the air was better in Englishtown. The conditions tonight were about as good as we're going to get here."
Although four grueling qualifying sessions remain, the six-time NHRA Pro Stock champion is looking to secure his eighth No. 1 qualifying spot at the U.S. Nationals. The last time Johnson was No. 1 qualifier at the U.S. Nationals was in 1999, the same year he recorded his last victory at IRP. The "Professor" of Pro Stock is still looking for his first No. 1 qualifying spot of the season.
"We made a good run tonight and didn't really leave to much on the table," said Johnson. "There may be a hundredth left but that would be it. We're going to have another session like this tomorrow night so we may see some guys shuffling around. Anybody out here, if they have a good run, could move into the No. 1 spot. We're going to try our best to not let that happen and keep the position."
Gene Wilson is qualified in the No. 2 position, Kurt Johnson is third in a Chevy Cavalier, Kenny Koretsky is fourth in a Chevy Cavalier and Mike Edwards is fifth in a Cavalier. Jim Yates had the second quickest SC/T Grand Am in the No. 6 position. The air temperature during qualifying was a cool 75 degrees with a relative humidity of 43 percent. The adjusted altitude was 2600 feet.
There were 43 car attempting to make the 16-car Pro Stock field tonight with more cars expecting to make qualifying passes on Saturday.
There will be one hour of qualifying broadcast on ESPN2 on Saturday, August 31 starting at 12:00 p.m. Eastern, and three hours of qualifying coverage on ESPN 2 on Sunday, September 1, beginning at 1 p.m. Eastern. Additional qualifying coverage can be seen on ESPN2 on Sunday night starting at 9:30 p.m. Eastern. Early coverage of final eliminations will be telecast on ESPN2 on Monday, September 2, at 11 a.m., with a complete, three-hour final round program beginning at 4:30 p.m.