Joliet: Doug Herbert Saturday summary

Herbert makes four good passes, ready for victory JOLIET, Ill (June 11, 2005) -- Doug Herbert is a busy man and he can't possibly keep track of every run he's made throughout his Top Fuel career. But he can make an educated guess. Herbert and...

Herbert makes four good passes, ready for victory

JOLIET, Ill (June 11, 2005) -- Doug Herbert is a busy man and he can't possibly keep track of every run he's made throughout his Top Fuel career. But he can make an educated guess.

Herbert and the Snap-on Tools dragster team had four qualifying sessions for the CARQUEST Auto Parts NHRA Nationals at Route 66 Raceway. Qualifying wrapped up Saturday and the Snap-on car got down the track all four times. The track was hot, the conditions varied and there wasn't a tire-smoking pass to be seen.

Herbert couldn't remember the last time the team had such success in qualifying.

"That might be the first time in years that we have made four good passes like that during qualifying," Herbert said. "That's such a great thing and there's nothing wrong with going into final eliminations on Sunday with momentum like that.

"Now it's time to race for the trophy and anyone has a chance of winning on Sunday. Hopefully we'll be more prepared than the rest of the field."

Herbert drove to the top half of the qualifying ladder, earning the No. 5 position with a 4.530-second pass at 317.87 mph.

"It would have been nice if we could have kept the No. 3 spot like we had after Friday's rounds but two cars snuck up the ladder today," Herbert -- the 2004 fall event winner at this facility -- said. "The good thing is that we got down the track every time and that shows we're really getting a handle on the car."

Herbert's primary sponsor, Snap-on Tools, has its headquarters in Kenosha, Wis., not too far from Route 66 Raceway. He also had several local Marines on site Saturday.

"This is a huge race for us because we have so many Snap-on employees here supporting us weekend and we always try to put on the best show possible for them," Herbert said. "We had some Marines that just came home from Iraq and they had a great time and it makes us want to work even harder.

"Snap-on is going to have close to a 1,000 people and we love the support. I think they deserve four round wins tomorrow and I can't wait to get after it."

Herbert will face John Smith in the first round. Smith qualified 12th with a 4.640 pass at 314.97.

The soldiers that joined Herbert next weekend in Joliet are: Cpl. Patrick Hilty of Park Ridge, Ill.; Sgt. Kevin Perez of Alsip. Ill.; LCpl. Joseph Ochoa of Woodridge, Ill.; LCpl. Christian Ramirez of Chicago; LCpl. Jose Maldonado of Chicago; Cpl. Eric Weber of Rockford, Ill.; Cpl. James Tucker of River Grove, Ill.; Cpl. Lee Cannon of Naperville, Ill.; Cpl. Mark Gannon of Chicago and LCpl. Chris Bay of Joliet.

Final eliminations start at 11 a.m. Sunday. ESPN2 will air coverage of this weekend's event starting with qualifying at 6 p.m. (ET) on Saturday. Final eliminations will start at 3 p.m. (ET) on Sunday. NHRA 2Day can be seen at 11:30 a.m. on Sunday on ESPN2.

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Series NHRA
Drivers Doug Herbert , Jose Maldonado , James Tucker