PHOENIX, February 18, 2001 - It's great when a plan comes together. Ask Doug Herbert. Herbert, crew chief Larry Frazier and tuning consultant Wes Cerny changed the engine combination on Herbert's Snap-on Racing Top Fuel dragster...
PHOENIX, February 18, 2001 - It's great when a plan comes together. Ask Doug Herbert. Herbert, crew chief Larry Frazier and tuning consultant Wes Cerny changed the engine combination on Herbert's Snap-on Racing Top Fuel dragster and he made six test runs at a track near here last week.
The results were evident when the NHRA Checker Schuck's Kragen Nationals began at Firebird Raceway Friday. Herbert enjoyed his finest performance in almost two years. He was consistent during qualifying, clicking off times of 4.589, 4.604 and 4.625 seconds. The quickest put him No. 3 in Sunday's eliminations.
He defeated Paul Romine, driver of Herbert's CARQUEST IHRA dragster, in the first round with a tire-spinning 4.955 at 287.72 mph. Herbert experienced traction problems again in the quarterfinals and lost to Kenny Bernstein - 4.647 at 309.84 to 7.337 at 112.67.
"It was our best showing in 18 months," Herbert said. "We just didn't know what to do with the tune-up when the weather got hot like it did Sunday. We just had no experience (tuning the new combination) in hot weather. We were happy with our good qualifying runs. We have a lot of potential this year."
Herbert is ninth in points with 91 but is only 27 points behind fifth place-place Gary Scelzi's 108.
Herbert's next opportunity to turn that potential into a race win comes at Gainesville, Fla., March 16-18, and he'll be racing with a new Snap-on dragster.
Qualified: No. 3, 4.589 seconds at 316.90 mph.
First round: Herbert, 4.955 at 287.72 def. Paul Romine, 5.815 at 154.76; Quarterfinal: Kenny Bernstein def. Herbert.
Race winners: Doug Kalitta, Top Fuel; John Force, Funny Car; Warren Johnson, Pro Stock.