Joliet II: David Baca eliminations summary

Baca out early, remains sixth in points JOLIET, Ill. (September 28, 2003) -- With two back-to-back top qualifying spots at Indy and Memphis and a No. 5 here at Route 66 Raceway, David Baca, driver of the American Racing/Waterloo/Skill Clean Top...

Baca out early, remains sixth in points

JOLIET, Ill. (September 28, 2003) -- With two back-to-back top qualifying spots at Indy and Memphis and a No. 5 here at Route 66 Raceway, David Baca, driver of the American Racing/Waterloo/Skill Clean Top Fuel dragster, began his quest for the Top Fuel NHRA Carquest Auto Parts Nationals title against Rhonda Hartman-Smith in today's opening round of eliminations.

At the green, Baca had some tire shake and had to pedal the car to regain traction. This was all Hartman-Smith needed as she ran a career best elapsed time. Baca ran the quarter-mile in 4.643 seconds, slightly behind Hartman-Smith, who cruised to a pass of 4.523 seconds at 319.75 mph.

"The conditions are so good here and we are developing tons of horsepower," said Baca, after the disappointing loss. "We tried to slip the tires loose at the start but they shook and I had to pedal once before it hooked up. By that time Rhonda had everything going her way and I could only watch her take the win light. What's really disappointing is that we lost ground in our climb in the POWERade points battle."

Coming into this race, Baca was six points behind fifth. He leaves 29 points behind Cory McClenathan, who occupies the fifth position, and 215 points behind Darrell Russell in fourth. On the other side of the coin, he is 81 points ahead of John Smith in seventh and 128 points ahead of Doug Herbert, in eighth.

Now it's back to Maple Grove Raceway Park, just outside Reading, Penn., for Baca and his American Racing/Waterloo/Skill Clean dragster for the 19th annual NHRA Lucas Oil Nationals, which was postponed because of rain from the weekend of September 11-14 to next weekend October 4-5. Saturday, October 4, is set aside for qualifying, while eliminations will be held Sunday, October 5.

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Series NHRA
Drivers Doug Herbert , Rhonda Hartman-Smith , David Baca , Cory McClenathan