Phoenix Friday Chevrolet Notes

CHEVROLET NOTES AND QUOTES CSK NATIONALS FIREBIRD INTL RACEWAY NHRA WINSTON DRAG RACING SERIES FRIDAY, FEB. 26, 1999 FUNNY CAR -- CAMARO Z28 WHIT BAZEMORE, KENDALL CAMARO Z28, is No. 5 qualifier, 5.016/299.53, after two qualifying sessions. ...

CHEVROLET NOTES AND QUOTES CSK NATIONALS FIREBIRD INTL RACEWAY NHRA WINSTON DRAG RACING SERIES FRIDAY, FEB. 26, 1999

FUNNY CAR -- CAMARO Z28

WHIT BAZEMORE, KENDALL CAMARO Z28, is No. 5 qualifier, 5.016/299.53, after two qualifying sessions. His second run was his best.

"It was a good run. We pedaled the Kendall Camaro, but I don't think we really had to. I've been slow catching it when it's shaking; it's just a matter of getting used to the characteristics of this Camaro and what it tells you. It's just different than what I'm used to. So I went out and it rattled a little bit, it was moving to the left, so I pedaled it to be safe. It probably didn't hurt the e.t. a whole lot, maybe just a little bit. It was still a good run. Sometimes all you want to do is get down the track. That's where I was. No matter what the car did, I wanted to get it from A to B. I think we're in a good position for tomorrow. The team has a good tune-up for this track. We didn't spin the tires at all. Our concensus is that the track will get a little bit worse as the weekend goes on. If the weatherman is correct it will be a little hotter tomorrow and Sunday."

ON JOHN FORCE'S NEW MUSTANG BODY: "It was a good run (4.853 for Force). We ran a .88 here testing, so it's not like he went out and ran a .60. It's a good run, but I know there's one Chevy that might be in a good position to challenge him a little bit, and probably two. We're not even watching what Force does. Who cares? We're just running our Camaro, doing what we know how to do. When you look at the history of this Kendall Camaro team, it has proven that we can be right there with him and that's what I'm counting on."

ON THE BEGINNING OF A NEW SEASON: "We had three weeks off after Pomona, and then of course we had the winter off. I don't care what they say, the more often you do this the better you get. When you have three weeks off, in your first run you're going to be a little rusty. Sometimes if the car is perfect you don't know if you're rusty. When you have to do things (such as pedaling) when you're a little rusty you are going to be slow."

RON CAPPS, COPENHAGEN CAMARO Z28, is No. 11 qualifier, 5.156/276.86. Capps shut it down early in both runs.

"We have the 5-disc clutch in it and Roland (Leong, crew chief) figures that the 5-disc clutch is going to be the future here. To run as hard as we have to run to stay in front we have to run the 5-disc. You may have to sacrifice a few runs to get a handle on it. It's just the way things have to be. We have all decided (on the team) that we are 100% behind Roland and the fact that he needs to work on the 5-disc clutch. In the first round it dropped a cylinder at the hit of the throttle. Roland then made some changes to the clutch and the Camaro ran a 5.15. I'm clicking it off at 900 feet until Roland feels comfortable with everything on the car. That would have been a little quicker run, that's just a part of it. We're not going to get stupid out here and rotate the earth before we know what we're doing with this clutch. We have two rounds tomorrow to work more on this clutch. We decided to keep it in there and it's not coming out. Other guys have put the 5-disc in and had problems and they put the 4-disc back in. We decided to bite the bullet and get it together. Even on the last run it dropped a cylinder at about two seconds. The Camaro is so neat to drive, it went over to the guardrail and I was able to pull it back a little bit." ON FORCE'S NEW MUSTANG: "They have done some things on the Mustang that have pushed the envelope, but that's why the rules are the way they are. This is the most highly technical motorsports there is. When you make a car that can go from zero to 320 mph in that short amount of time you have to do everything you can within the rules to help your downforce. There's a lot of talk about the Mustang, but we still feel that even though we're still running the '98 body -- we will have the '99 body in a few races -- we have a better car. It's good that we have the rivalry building with Chevy versus Ford. There are other issues on the Mustang that maybe NHRA needs to address and it really is all NHRA's problem because they have to come up with the template on these cars. Otherwise, we are going to do things on our body that Ford won't like, and they will do things we won't like. Th e NHRA is working on it. They need to be there to stop all this controversy and we want them to do that so we won't have to worry about anybody pushing the rules too far."

PRO STOCK -- CAMARO Z28

KURT JOHNSON, ACDELCO CAMARO Z28, is No. 2 qualifier behind his dad Warren, 6.969/197.88.

MIKE EDWARDS, DEWCO SALES CAMARO Z28, is struggling with his new Camaro and is 35th in a field of 35, 11.211/79.50, after experiencing violent shaking in both rounds.

"We haven't found what the car likes, we found what it doesn't like. We have changed a lot of swaybars, changed a lot of different things and most of the things we have changed it doesn't like. There are a lot more changes that can be done. When you are making only four runs you're just running out of time. We spent a week at Rick Jones' (chassis builder) shop fixing the quarter panels (after Pomona) trying to comply with NHRA's template. We went to Dallas and tested last week. We came over here in Phoenix and tested on Wednesday. There are just not enough hours in the day. The new Camaro will go fine the first 60 feet, then it starts to shake violently."

FEDERAL MOGUL DRAG RACING SERIES

JAY PAYNE, VALVOLINE CAMARO Z28, is No. 15 qualifier, 6.070/239.74.

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