Memphis: McClenathan/Gann Saturday summary

McClenathan enters eliminations 4th on qualifying ladder MILLINGTON, Tenn. (September 20, 2003) - For the first time in several races no rain was forecasted for the 16th NHRA O'Reilly Mid-South Nationals presented by Pennzoil and qualifying was...

McClenathan enters eliminations 4th on qualifying ladder

MILLINGTON, Tenn. (September 20, 2003) - For the first time in several races no rain was forecasted for the 16th NHRA O'Reilly Mid-South Nationals presented by Pennzoil and qualifying was just that - rain free. Taking advantage of the dry weather, Cory McClenathan, from Riverside, Calif., qualified No. 4 in the Top Fuel field of 16.

Cory McClenathan, driver of the Darrell Gwynn-owned, NY Yankees/Berryman Products Top Fuel dragster, was a model of consistency in Friday's two qualifying sessions running elapsed times of 4.598 seconds and 4.570 seconds.

Saturday, crew chief John Stewart tried to push the envelope and test the Memphis Motorsports Park track surface to see what the track would hold. His tune up was too aggressive, but he now has a handle on what the car needs for tomorrow's opening round of eliminations. Stewart decided to forego the final qualifying session and use the additional time this afternoon to ready the NY Yankees/Berryman Products Top Fuel dragster for tomorrow.

"We feel it will benefit us more to ready the car for tomorrow," said Stewart. "We haven't had the success we had hoped for in the opening round the last several races and feel the additional time of preperation will enable us to go additional rounds in eliminations. We look forward to the challenge tomorrow."

In tomorrow's opening round, McClenathan will square off against Scott Palmer, who qualified 13th with a pass of 4.745 seconds at 304.74 mph.

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Gann nails down the third spot in Memphis

MILLINGTON, Tenn. (September 20, 2003) -- Consistently qualifying in the top three Pro Stock Bikes at the last several events on the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, Shawn Gann, rider of the Mac Tools/Berryman Products Suzuki Pro Stock Bike, qualified No. 3 at the 16th NHRA O'Reilly Mid-South Nationals presented by Pennzoil.

Gann from Stoneville, N.C. followed Angelle Savoie, who qualified No. 1 and Geno Scali, who placed No. 2. He ran elapsed times of 7.133 seconds, 7.187 seconds, 7.125 seconds and 7.158 seconds in his four qualifying session.

In tomorrow's eliminations, Gann, who has two career wins, will square off against Steve Johnson, from Birmingham, Ala., who qualified No. 14 aboard a Suzuki GXSR with a run of 7.248 seconds at 188.17 mph. Eliminations get underway at 11 a.m., local time.

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Series NHRA
Drivers Shawn Gann , Cory McClenathan , Geno Scali , Darrell Gwynn , Steve Johnson