Las Vegas: Larry Dixon Friday summary

Larry Dixon produces double aces and sets the National Speed Record After qualifying No. 3 Friday at The Strip. Las Vegas (April 4) -- Defending NHRA POWERade Top Fuel champion Larry Dixon set an NHRA national speed record with his lap of 4.537...

Larry Dixon produces double aces and sets the National Speed Record After qualifying No. 3 Friday at The Strip.

Las Vegas (April 4) -- Defending NHRA POWERade Top Fuel champion Larry Dixon set an NHRA national speed record with his lap of 4.537 seconds at 332.75 miles per hour to qualify No. 3 after the first day of action at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

The Don Prudhomme Miller Lite Dragster started the day with a track record and finished with the national record. The first run put Dixon in position to establish the new speed record with the impressive 332.75 mph clocking. It was up to Dixon and crew chief, Dick LaHaie to back up the run within one-percent of that same speed. Dixon was successful on his second pass as his lap of 4.554 at 330.07 mph to become the NHRA's new "King of Speed." Dixon's previous career-best speed was of 327.27 mph (October, 2001).

"I can tell you that Dick LaHaie and the crew have been working on the engine, fuel, and air ratio, to get more speed," said Dixon. "We've been working on it, and it seemed to respond. Actually, on the last run, I had a cylinder out at four seconds, I would think we could even have ran faster."

"Speed is so hard. They only clock you the last 60 feet of the run. You could have a great run up until that point. But having your engine running better than anybody else's, where that speed is clocked, is difficult," said Dixon. "We stayed after Gainesville testing, learned some things, and were able to apply the things we learned there, here. It seems to be working."

The Don Prudhomme Snake Racing dragster qualified third overall and hopes to hold onto both National and Track Records the entire weekend. The National Record set by Dixon might just be the icing on Snake's birthday cake, which he will celebrate on Sunday.

Television coverage of this weekend's qualifying will be seen on ESPN 2 on Saturday, April 5, from 10:00PM -- Midnight (ET). Race day coverage will be shown on Sunday, April 6, from 2:00 -- 3:00PM on ESPN, and 11:00PM -- 1:00AM (ET) on ESPN2.

-dpr-

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Series NHRA
Drivers Larry Dixon , Don Prudhomme , Dick LaHaie