LAS VEGAS (Apr. 7) - With no real clue as to what to expect from the quarter-mile drag strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Larry Dixon and the Don Prudhomme-owned Miller Lite Dragster began the day on the pole and finished as the No. 4 qualifier ...
LAS VEGAS (Apr. 7) - With no real clue as to what to expect from the quarter-mile drag strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Larry Dixon and the Don Prudhomme-owned Miller Lite Dragster began the day on the pole and finished as the No. 4 qualifier after the first day of action at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Dixon's first pass of the day resulted in a time of 4.696 seconds at 314.39 mph, good enough to take the pole after the first full professional qualifying session at the brand new facility.
"If I were bragging, I would feel a lot better doing it on Saturday night," said Dixon. "It feels really good to get down a track that we have never been to, especially considering the elevation. I think that first lap will let people know just how smart Dick LaHaie is. He is one of the greatest at getting his cars down the track, no matter where he is. I think the thing that surprises me most is that we haven't slowed down a bit. We are going at the same pace that we were at two weeks ago at Gainesville.
"Tonight I think we will run in the low to mid .60s," Dixon continued. "Everyone else is going to improve. Gary Scelzi and Tony Schumacher didn't make it down the track the first time, and you know that won't be the case tonight. Overall, I am comfortable running a 4.69 already because we are qualified well in the field and I think that time will keep us in the top half of the ladder. We still want to try and improve though from session to session."
LaHaie was also pleased with the day's first effort. "Tonight the track will be a lot cooler and we will probably be the last car to go down the track. If I had to guess, I would think we will run a .65 or a .66 which would tickle me to death, and probably be good enough for second or third."
Dixon's second lap did see the Miller Lite Dragster improve with a time of 4.673 seconds at 316.90 mph, which earned him the No. 4 spot as well as the track speed record. "Everybody did improve tonight just like I thought they would," said Dixon, "but we did not improve as much as I would have liked. We will find out what the car did differently tonight and make the right adjustments for tomorrow.
If the day turns overcast, the pole will still be reachable. Kenny (Bernstein) made a real good run tonight to win the pole (4.630 at 314.09), but if it is cloudy tomorrow, that could be in jeopardy. If not, his time should hold. Guys are not going to go up there looking for low ET. If they are in the show already, teams will be working on their raceway setup."
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