McCLENATHAN ENDS UP NO. 6 QUALIFIER FOR U.S. NATIONALS INDIANAPOLIS (Sept. 6, 2009) - Cory McClenathan and the FRAM Tough Guard Top Fuel dragster team were unable to improve today as temperatures continued to cool at Raceway Park at Indianapolis...
McCLENATHAN ENDS UP NO. 6 QUALIFIER FOR U.S. NATIONALS
INDIANAPOLIS (Sept. 6, 2009) - Cory McClenathan and the FRAM Tough Guard Top Fuel dragster team were unable to improve today as temperatures continued to cool at Raceway Park at Indianapolis following a long rain delay, slipping from No. 2 to No. 6 in final qualifying for the U.S. Nationals.
Only one qualifying round of two expected today (to complete the five for the weekend) was run because of a long rain delay, and McClenathan watched his competitors in front of him jump to the front of the pack in nearly every pairing. First it was Brandon Bernstein, then it was Tony Schumacher, and finally it was Antron Brown's pass that stuck for No. 1.
McClenathan lost traction in his attempt, posting a 4.806-second lap at 148.15 mph, which dropped him to No. 6.
"I think, considering that the rain delay went on as long as it did, and it dropped a pretty decent amount of water, NHRA did a great job of getting it cleaned up so the fans could at least enjoy one round of good racing," said McClenathan. "But, for the FRAM Tough Guard car, we saw those stellar numbers come up on the board and we knew we really needed to push it.
"We knew it was going to be an all-or-nothing type of deal and it was kind of like, 'we need to push this car and see what its possibilities are and then back it up a little bit.' Now, we can go race it tomorrow with all the confidence in the world. We'll have lane choice, and that's a good thing.
"We kind of feel like we got our pocket picked a little bit, to go out there in second and come back in sixth. It's a little bit tough to take but, you know what, it doesn't matter. It doesn't matter who we race. We're going to race everybody just like we would our own teammate, and Tony (Schumacher) ran well. He ran 3.83 (for second place), so we'll be able to take some data off his car and utilize it tomorrow.
"Monday is a whole other day, and it is Indy, so anything can happen."
McClenathan will face David Grubnic in the opening round of Monday's eliminations.