SCELZI HOLDS ON TO NO. 1 IN VEGAS QUALIFYING LAS VEGAS (April 16, 2005) - Gary Scelzi held on as low qualifier through two more rounds of qualifying today for the NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas. The Fresno, Calif., native's elapsed...
SCELZI HOLDS ON TO NO. 1 IN VEGAS QUALIFYING
LAS VEGAS (April 16, 2005) - Gary Scelzi held on as low qualifier through two more rounds of qualifying today for the NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas. The Fresno, Calif., native's elapsed time of 4.797 seconds at 325.06 mph, set last night, was not surpassed today in the heat of the desert sun.
In today's third round of qualifying he recorded a 4.941-second pass at 311.05, and in the final session he posted the second-best of that round of 4.892/320.20. Only last week's winner in Houston Robert Hight (of John Force Racing) bettered that time with a 4.811/325.77.
"Three out of four good qualifying rounds, that's not bad," he said. "We'll see. A lot of guys had a lot of trouble (getting down this track). Mike (Neff, crew chief) seems to be able to master this Mopar/Oakley Dodge and the weather is going to be just like this tomorrow.
"I didn't think anybody was going to beat that time today. Even with Robert running an .81. I thought that was one of those on-the-edge kind of deals. And it was in the left lane, and there's more shade in the left-hand lane, so that didn't bother me."
Scelzi faces Eric Medlen in the first round of eliminations on Sunday. Medlen struggled to qualify, ending up No. 16. "I'm not a big fan of racing Eric Medlen," said Scelzi, "because his team has a lot of information and they do share information over there at John Force Racing.
"We're as good as Force, we're as good as Robert (Hight), we're as good as any of them. Well just go out there and I'll get my elbows up on the seat and do the best we can, and hopefully we'll put this Mopar/Oakley Dodge in the final.
Scelzi also held on to his No. 2 qualifying spot in the Meer Capital Partners Alcohol Funny Car. Unfortunately, Scelzi was defeated in the first round of eliminations.