* Cruz Pedregon, driver of the Advance Auto Parts team, heads to Joliet for the second time this season to compete in the Fifth annual Route 66 NHRA Nationals. After Hurricane Rita postponed the event at Ennis, Texas last weekend, the 1992 Funny...
* Cruz Pedregon, driver of the Advance Auto Parts team, heads to Joliet for the second time this season to compete in the Fifth annual Route 66 NHRA Nationals. After Hurricane Rita postponed the event at Ennis, Texas last weekend, the 1992 Funny Car champion and his Advance Auto Parts Nitro Funny Car are ready to get back to business during the 20th race of the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series schedule at Route 66 Raceway.
* The mind set and set up for the Advance Auto Parts team going into Route 66 is no different than any other race. They will go over the game plan for the weekend, have some solid runs during qualifying to get a good feel for the track, and be ready when the tree light turns green on Sunday.
"Route 66 Raceway is one of the premier tracks on the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series circuit," Pedregon said. "It has a stadium look and feel to it, and the racing surface is flat and fast. If the weather is cool, we plan on using it to our advantage this weekend.
"We want to establish a baseline during the first run on Friday and then try to hit our number during the cool night conditions of the second pass," Pedregon explained. "This is a fast track, -specially if the weather stays as cool as forecasted- and the cars that don't run in the mid 4.70's, will end in the second half of the field.
"And this is a track that crew chiefs love and I like because you can go fast and make the best use of the Advance Auto Parts car horsepower. We would like to improve our best E.T. (4.758 seconds, 2004) this weekend at Joliet."
* The Advance Auto Parts team has been going through a transition period under the new direction of crew chief Ron Douglas and co crew chief Sam Shockley. Pedregon talks about the progression they are making.
"We all knew that there was going to be a transition period," Pedregon commented. "In the short run, it has been a high price we've had to pay, but it is what we had to do to have a car that runs fast and wins races. At this point, we've had enough runs to get a feeling of what we need to do to keep this car on top of the hill."
* So far this season, Pedregon has made it to the semifinals at Pomona, scored a runner up at Houston Raceway Park and reached the semi's during the next four races. Following a number one qualifier in Englishtown N.J. and a quarterfinal finish in Madison, Ill.,Pedregon heads to Route 66 Raceway tenth in NHRA Nitro Funny Car points with 883.