Bob Panella, Jr., who has won back-to-back Winston Pro Stock Truck Championships (1999 and 2000) on the probability of a three-peat: "I'm going to give it my best shot. I know the areas we have to improve on this season to stay ahead of the field.
Bob Panella, Jr., who has won back-to-back Winston Pro Stock Truck Championships (1999 and 2000) on the probability of a three-peat: "I'm going to give it my best shot. I know the areas we have to improve on this season to stay ahead of the field. I have my work cut out for me, but I would be less optimistic if I thought I didn't have room for improvement." <pre> AutoZone Winternationals Results (Previous Races):
1999: Lost semifinals 2000: Winner over Greg Stanfield
Pomona Dragway Notes:
Holds the track elapsed time record at 7.478 seconds set at the 2000 AAA Auto Club Finals.
Has advanced to the semi-finals or better the five times Pro Stock Trucks have run at Pomona Dragway (2-AutoZone Winternationals and 3-AAA Auto Club Finals): 1-Win (2000 Winternationals), 1-Runner-up (1999 Finals), and 3-semi-finals (1998 Finals, 1999 Winternationals, and 2000 Finals). </pre> Bob Panella, Jr. on area(s) of improvement for the 2001 season: "We have at least 10 percent more horsepower today than we did when the class began in 1998. I feel we've got as much or more horsepower when compared to the other teams. But there is no sense in trying to develop more horsepower until you can get all your existing horsepower to the track. Therefore, we need to improve in the area of chassis, clutch and gear ratios to name a few. That will help get existing power to the ground. If we can improve in those area, then lookout."
Is the only driver to qualify at all 40 races since the Pro Stock Truck class began competition in 1998.
Has won over 74 percent of the 120 rounds he has competed in (89 wins, 31 losses).
Has been to the final round 42 percent of the time (17 final rounds out of 40 races) and has won 52 percent of the final rounds in which he has competed (nine out of 17).
Has qualified #1: 15-times. He has qualified in the top half of the field 90 percent of the time (36 times in 40 events).
Holds the NHRA national elapsed time (ET) record at 7.428 seconds which he set at the 2000 AutoZone Nationals in Memphis in October.
Has a career best speed of 180.09 mph set at the 2000 Advanced Auto Parts Southern Nationals in Atlanta in May.
He is the reigning Winston Pro Stock Truck Champion having won back-to-back titles in 1999 and 2000. He was fourth in Winston points in 1998.
Has won two of three special events (non-point events): He won the 1999 Holley PST Dominator Duel and was runner-up in 2000. Both events were held at Route 66 Raceway in Joliet, Ill., just outside Chicago He also won the Pro Stock Truck category at the 2000 Winston Shootout at Bristol Dragway in Bristol, Tenn.
Prior to turning professional he was a four time Division Six champion in Comp Eliminator.
Bob Panella, Jr. on which driver/team will present the biggest challenge in his quest for a three-peat: "Steve Johns was looking tough last year, but he said he wasn't going to race. So, he's out I guess. It's hard to argue against those yellow trucks of Jegs and it hard to argue against Greg Stanfield and the Bart Price team. They're fast. Stanfield won the Finals, so he knows how to win now. And, of course, you can't forget Randy Daniels. It will be the same old guys."