Memphis: Grubnic, Arend final report

Team DHL sings the blues in Memphis MILLINGTON, Tenn., (Sept. 28, 2008) -- Both of the Team DHL Nitro-fueled drag racers were defeated in the first round of eliminations Sunday at the annual running of the O'Reilly NHRA Mid-South Nationals at...

Team DHL sings the blues in Memphis

MILLINGTON, Tenn., (Sept. 28, 2008) -- Both of the Team DHL Nitro-fueled drag racers were defeated in the first round of eliminations Sunday at the annual running of the O'Reilly NHRA Mid-South Nationals at Memphis Motorsports Park in Millington, Tenn., just a few miles north of Memphis.

Native Australian Dave Grubnic, driver of the bright yellow, 8,000-horsepower DHL Top Fuel dragster, qualified his rail in the No. 4 position (3.848 sec., 311.13 mph) for Sunday's 16-car field. He squared off against No. 13 qualifier J.R. Todd in the opening round. Soon after the race began, Grubnic's DHL machine began spinning the tires and losing valuable traction and that allowed Todd to get the win, 3.912 sec., 308 mph to 4.590 sec., 213.70 mph.

Grubnic remains in 10th place in points and in the NHRA Countdown to 1 postseason, X points behind the leader. There are now only three events remaining in the 2008 Countdown to the Championship.

Native Canadian Jeff Arend, driver of the Nitro-fueled DHL Toyota Solara Funny Car, also saw his dreams of rockin' n' rollin' to a Memphis win fade away in the first round of Funny Car eliminations.

Arend, the No. 13 qualifier (4.162 sec., 295.79 mph), took on No. 4 qualifier Mike Neff in the opening salvo for the fuel floppers. Arend and the DHL team made their best run of the weekend in the Bluff City, 4.156 sec., 297.94 mph, but unfortunately Neff's slower run of 4.171 sec., 297.22 mph took the round win because Neff launched his machine .061 seconds sooner than Arend and the DHL car from the starting line.

-credit: km

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Series NHRA
Drivers Jeff Arend , J.R. Todd , Mike Neff