Las Vegas II: Gary Scelzi Saturday summary

Scelzi Takes No. 5 Spot in Vegas Qualifying LAS VEGAS (Oct. 30, 2004) - Gary Scelzi drove his HEMI-powered Oakley Dodge Stratus into fifth place in Funny Car qualifying after four rounds for the penultimate event of the 2004 NHRA POWERade Drag...

Scelzi Takes No. 5 Spot in Vegas Qualifying

LAS VEGAS (Oct. 30, 2004) - Gary Scelzi drove his HEMI-powered Oakley Dodge Stratus into fifth place in Funny Car qualifying after four rounds for the penultimate event of the 2004 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series at The Strip at Las Vegas.

By virtue of his strong 4.772-second pass at 322.42 mph set in the Friday evening session, which was good for No. 2 at that time, Scelzi became the fifth of nine Funny Cars to post elapsed times in the 4.7-second range this weekend, and will face Tommy Johnson Jr. in the first round of eliminations on Sunday.

Today's final session, delayed long enough because of celebrations for the Budweiser Shootout, John Force clinching the Funny Car championship and other events until temperatures cooled and shadows fell on the track, produced a tire-smoking 11.413-second pass at 84.55 mph, which surprised Scelzi and crew chief Mike Neff.

"Who knows?," said the three-time Top Fuel champion who is aiming to end the season in second place in Funny Car points following these final two events. "We made it down the track three out of four times (4.998/254.86 in the first session and 4.860/311.63 in the third). We had a problem on the first run, but we still ran a 4.99 shutting off early.

"Then we had the great run at a .77, so we know we can run the numbers. I just would like to have seen it make it down the track that last time. We're not really sure what happened. We had a 'phenomenon.'

"The conditions were great, so that's kind of got us stumped a little bit. But tomorrow is a different day. We're going to run in the sunlight. We know what to do. We ran an .86 (in sunlight in the middle of the day today). We know what to do to pick that up to run a low .80. Those are the conditions we're going to run in tomorrow, so we'll just see what happens."

-dsr-

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Series NHRA
Drivers John Force , Gary Scelzi , Mike Neff , Tommy Johnson Jr.