Joliet: Tom Hammonds Friday notes

TEAM HAMMONDS STILL IN THE FIGHT TO QUALIFY (Joliet, Ill., June 6, 2008) -- Team Hammonds is still in the fight to qualify though they sit in 22nd place after two qualifying runs today at the Route 66 NHRA Nationals. Starting session one...

TEAM HAMMONDS STILL IN THE FIGHT TO QUALIFY

(Joliet, Ill., June 6, 2008) -- Team Hammonds is still in the fight to qualify though they sit in 22nd place after two qualifying runs today at the Route 66 NHRA Nationals.

Starting session one with a new race engine, the team ran an elapsed time of 6.810 seconds at 201.91 mph. The run was aggressive which caused the performance to be less than desirable. Hammonds admits noticing problems with the engine dating back to the Topeka, Kan. race, when the back half numbers were getting worse and worse.

"We thought that we would give our new race engine a chance for the first run, but it just didn't run with any speed at all," says Tom Hammonds, owner/drive of No. 20 Chevy Cobalt. "The problem has been happening for a little while."

To remedy the problem, the decision was made to change out the new engine for the second qualifying run to the original engine from the start of the season. For this run, Team Hammonds ran an elapsed time of 6.783 seconds in 203.55 mph, registering improvement in back half speed.

"We are still not where we need to be to compete with the fast cars. I need to get a better handle on what is going on mechanically. In order for us to run with these fast cars, we cannot come to a race worrying about our engine going bad or if something is happening that will cost us the chance to qualify."

Tomorrow, the team will have a chance to remedy the situation in qualifying sessions three and four. But first, they will change the transmission gears on the Chevy Cobalt which they hope will give them a chance to make solid runs.

"We now know we have the engine in the car that is at least capable of qualifying. We just have to get the right set-ups in place for tomorrow."

-credit: thr

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Series NHRA
Drivers Tom Hammonds