Nobel: Joe Fuentes preview

NOBLE, Okla. - Federal Mogul Dragster rookie Joe Fuentes will be looking not so much for a win during this weekend's final Division 4 race at Thunder Valley Raceway Park in Noble, Oklahoma but valuable knowledge and seat time to make him a...

NOBLE, Okla. - Federal Mogul Dragster rookie Joe Fuentes will be looking not so much for a win during this weekend's final Division 4 race at Thunder Valley Raceway Park in Noble, Oklahoma but valuable knowledge and seat time to make him a better driver for the 2001 season.

The Leander, Texas, based driver will be at his first race since splitting ways with the Troy Buff team out of Houston. With tuning advice and lessons from veteran wrench Ora Vasquez out of California, Fuentes feels he is moving in the right direction.

Fuentes said, "We're just looking to get the car hooked up this weekend with the new tune-up we have from Ora. This thing really has a lot more low end power. My gameplan is basically just to go and make a few good passes, I'm not even worried if I don't qualify. Learning and getting used to the new set up is our main priority right now, it has a lot more power than the old set up."

"We have done some testing over the last few weeks, but have never got a hold of the track," Fuentes added. "I am a new driver, and we have some new guys in the crew, so it's just going to take a while for us to gel."

New crew chief Ora Vasquez certainly knows his way around an alcohol dragster. The 70 year old veteran has worked with the likes of Alan Johnson and Cory MacClenathan when they ran in the Top Alcohol Dragster ranks, and now serves not only as a tuner, but teacher to the rookie Fuentes.

"He's not just doing the work and tuning, but he's teaching us," Fuentes commented. "That's what I like about him. He tells us what to do, and what to look for in the problem areas of these motors. So he is more of a teacher for us right now. He sure knows what he's doing."

Qualifying begins at 5 p.m. on Friday for the Federal Mogul Dragsters, with two more sessions on Saturday. Final eliminations will begin on Sunday.

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Series NHRA
Drivers Cory Mac , Troy Buff