TROXEL LOSES CLOSE ONE IN VEGAS FIRST ROUND LAS VEGAS (Oct. 29, 2006) - Melanie Troxel, No. 4 in NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series Top Fuel point standings, matched up against No. 5 in points Rod Fuller in a marquee first-round match-up today in...
TROXEL LOSES CLOSE ONE IN VEGAS FIRST ROUND
LAS VEGAS (Oct. 29, 2006) - Melanie Troxel, No. 4 in NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series Top Fuel point standings, matched up against No. 5 in points Rod Fuller in a marquee first-round match-up today in eliminations at the ACDelco NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. It was close, but the spring event winner here and driver of the Skull Shine/Knoll Gas-Torco Race Fuels Top Fuel dragster lost the contest to Fuller on a holeshot advantage.
Troxel ran a quicker 4.567-second lap at 328.70 mph to Fuller's slower, but winning 4.569/325.92. The difference was at the starting line, where Troxel launched with a more than respectable .081 reaction time (.000 is perfect) to Fuller's impressive .049, resulting in a margin of victory of .0301 of a second.
"It was a very close race," said Troxel, who last week was named Sportswoman of the Year by the Women's Sports Foundation. "Our 4.56 (-second elapsed time) would have been quick enough to beat most of the people out here. Unfortunately, 'Hot Rod' really pulled one out by having a .049 light. I had a good light, but he just had an exceptional light.
"It's disappointing, but as a team, this Skull Shine/Knoll Gas-Torco Race Fuels squad will be OK. We know we went up there and did a good job.
"Being the second pair up, and not really knowing what the track will hold, you have to be a little conservative with the tune-up, so, all in all, I think we did a good job running the .56." Her best qualifying lap was a 4.558.
"We got through the spot where we've been smoking the tires early," she added. "We probably could have been more aggressive through there, but with almost smoking the tires on the last qualifying run, we thought it was smarter to back it down a little bit. The car went down the track and Richard (Hogan, crew chief) did a great job putting together a good run."
Troxel holds onto fourth place in the Top Fuel point standings, with one event remaining.
Next, Troxel travels to Pomona, Calif., for the Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals, the site where she won her first Top Fuel race to open the 2006 NHRA season.