Memphis, Tenn. (Oct. 6): With cold temperatures predicted for the rest of the weekend, Melanie Troxel has no doubt that her and her teammates can improve on their No. 15 qualifying position as they prepare for day two of the AutoZone Nationals...
Memphis, Tenn. (Oct. 6): With cold temperatures predicted for the rest of the weekend, Melanie Troxel has no doubt that her and her teammates can improve on their No. 15 qualifying position as they prepare for day two of the AutoZone Nationals at Memphis Motorsports Park.
In all of Troxel's previous Top Fuel starts this year, she has qualified in the top half of the 16-car field.
"We should be all right for tomorrow," said Troxel. "We get two more passes like everyone else and we plan on getting down the track like Tony (Schumacher-teammate) and the Army dragster did tonight."
Troxel's first run of the day was a tire smoking 8.781 second pass at 94.99 mph. Her car had an impressive .851 sixty foot time, but soon after shook the big Goodyear slicks loose.
"Our tune-up was good," said Troxel, "but we underestimated the track conditions and should have got after it a little more."
In the evening session, crew chief Dan Olson did just that. Troxel left the starting line hard but lifted her wheels high off the ground. Unfortunately, when the settled back to the ground, the weight transfer unloaded the rear tires causing them to smoke.
Troxel tried to pedal and save the car, but she was out of the groove and had to lift. She coasted down track with a 8.309 e.t. at 84.96 mph.
"We seem to make the early qualifying runs very exciting," chuckled Troxel.
Troxel currently sits in the No. 15 qualifying position. Qualifying is scheduled for noon and 5 p.m. on Saturday. Speedvision will broadcast qualifying Saturday. Check local listings.