Phoenix: Cory McClenathan Saturday summary

Cory Mac starts from the ninth position at Phoenix CHANDLER, Ariz. (February 26, 2005) -- Cory McClenathan, driver of the Carrier Boyz Racing FRAM AirHog Top Fuel dragster, qualified No. 9 at the 21st annual NHRA Checker...

Cory Mac starts from the ninth position at Phoenix

CHANDLER, Ariz. (February 26, 2005) -- Cory McClenathan, driver of the Carrier Boyz Racing FRAM AirHog Top Fuel dragster, qualified No. 9 at the 21st annual NHRA Checker Schuck's Kragen Nationals being held this weekend at Firebird International Raceway in Phoenix.

In an inauspicious start to qualifying on Friday, McClenathan did not receive a time. He rebounded in the Friday night session when the FRAM AirHog dragster stopped the Firebird finish line timers in 4.570 seconds at 315.86 mph, which was the third quickest time of the session. This time was also quicker than the elapsed time of 4.602 seconds he ran last year at this event when he qualified eighth.

In the first session at noon today, Cory Mac struck the tires, losing traction, and coasted to the finish line. He closed out qualifying by recording his best elapsed time of qualifying, a 4.56 second pass. Even with the better time, McClenathan qualified in the ninth spot but is still optimistic about the chances of the Carrier Boyz Racing FRAM AirHog Top Fuel dragster tomorrow.

"We were really happy about that final pass," said McClenathan, who was glad to make a good run in front of the 85 or so Bendix guests who attended qualifying today. "That's a good run for right now for this Carrier Boyz Racing team. We're just taking small steps -- a little bit at a time. This FRAM AirHog dragster is starting to get more aggressive and be more consistent at the same time.

"We're trying to learn certain areas. We run really well in the middle of the track, it's the start that's been rough for us. That's what we're working on now -- the first 60- to 100- feet. Once we put it all together we'll be right there near the big guys or with them. Don't underestimate this team and don't count the FRAM AirHog out. We've got a car that's capable of doing good numbers."

Andy Carrier, who along with Mark Carrier, own and operate Carrier Boyz Racing added, "As Cory said we're working on consistency and it's coming along slow but sure. We would like to improve on our final qualifying run and go some rounds tomorrow."

Tomorrow, McClenathan, fifth on the all-time Top Fuel career win list with 28, seeks to put the FRAM AirHog dragster back in the hunt for POWERade points. Entering the Checker Schuck's Kragen Nationals, the Lake Havasu City, Ariz., driver is tied for No. 11 in the 2005 NHRA POWERade point chase, just 26 points out of the top five.

McClenathan has won this event twice (1994 and 1998), was runner-up in 1996 and advanced to the semifinals last year.

McClenathan begins his quest for a third CSK Nationals Top Fuel title tomorrow, Sunday, with eliminations for all classes beginning at 11 a.m. (MT). He will face off against David Baca in the opening round.

-cbr-

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers David Baca , Cory McClenathan , Cory Mac