Pomona GMC Sonoma Racing Notes & Quotes Saturday

GMC SONOMA RACING 40th Annual AutoZone Winternationals Pomona Raceway February 5, 2000 Pomona, Calif. (February 5, 2000) - Qualifying for the Pro Stock Trucks was completed today at the 40th annual AutoZone Winternationals at Pomona Raceway. ...

GMC SONOMA RACING 40th Annual AutoZone Winternationals Pomona Raceway February 5, 2000

Pomona, Calif. (February 5, 2000) - Qualifying for the Pro Stock Trucks was completed today at the 40th annual AutoZone Winternationals at Pomona Raceway. John Lingenfelter put in one of the Sonoma brand's best qualifying efforts since its introduction into the NHRA Pro Stock Truck series last March. Lingenfelter's Summit Racing Sonoma qualified in the No. 6 position with an elapsed time of 7.577 seconds at 177.88 mph and will have lane choice in round one of elimination's tomorrow morning. David Spitzer added to the Sonoma's brand's success this weekend by qualifying the Dynagear/Sunnen GMC in the No. 7 position with an elapsed time of 7.587 seconds at 176.35 mph. Spitzer will also have lane choice for round one. Rick Jones and the Country Motor Trailer Sales Sonoma rounded out the trifecta by qualifying in the No. 12 spot with an elapsed time of 7.598 seconds at 176.79 mph. It is the first time that GMC has put three Sonoma's into the 16-truck starting field for final eliminations. The No. 1 qualifier is Steve Johns in an S-10 with an elapsed time of 7.527 seconds at 178.99 mph. Bob Panella is qualified second, Brad Jeter is third, Greg Stanfield is fourth and John Coughlin is fifth.

John Lingenfelter (Summit Racing GMC Sonoma) -- "We changed transmission ratio's after our run yesterday and we're towards the end of the line for the last qualifying session, so the track should be slightly better for the Summit Racing Sonoma. We're hoping to just maintain fourth position, because there's one or two trucks out there that could move ahead of us that have been struggling all weekend. It will probably be a hair slower tonight."

Second Session: We feel pretty comfortable going into tomorrow's race. Our goal coming into this first event was to try and qualify in the top half of the field and we've been able to do that. We have some new engine pieces that are going to be ready in about two weeks so we're looking forward to that. We've been a little bit down on power from some of the best trucks, but we're happy with our situation tonight. The Summit Racing Sonoma is working well and we're able to make adjustments to it that seem to work. We're not lost and that may be the best thing yet. I think we can be as competitive this year as we were in '98 when we finished second in the point standings. We have a real good program together with our engine department and a lot better handle on this chassis. We got completely lost last year with a new chassis and had to work on it for most of the year. In doing that we sacrificed on the research and development work with our engine program. Now we're back to the old truck and things are looking better. I feel good about what we're doing, the people we have really work well together and there's a considerable amount of synergy with this team." No. 6 qualifier - 7.577ET/177.88MPH

Rick Jones (Country Motor Trailer Sales GMC Sonoma) -- We were much happier with our performance in the first session. The first two runs of the weekend weren't that good and we needed to be able to do that in the good lane. We had some electrical gremlins that we'd been struggling with and for now that's been fixed. We made a decent run but there's room for improvement. We'll continue to work on our Sonoma's raceday setup. Whatever lane we're racing out tomorrow, we should have pretty good barometer on where we need to be. A lot of people from General Motors and Country Motor Trailer Sales have provided with tremendous assistance and we're just happy to be racing tomorrow." No. 12 qualifier - 7.598ET/176.79MPH

David Spitzer (Dynagear/Sunnen GMC Sonoma) -- "We had a little bit of an overflow in the oil tank and it was dripping on the starting line so they just shut us out. We hurt the motor we had been running so we made a swap to get ready for today and we just got the oil level a little too high. We have a one shot deal tonight so we have to get this Dynagear/Sunnen Sonoma all the way from A to B. If we do everything right we should run around a 7.60. If we hit our shift on time and do our job, I think we'll be okay."

Second Session: "The only thing we did in the second session was to make a good run. We were lucky that we were in the left lane and that probably helped us out by a hundredth or so. We finally made a pretty decent run and there was probably a hundredth and a half left in it on that run. We have lane choice so we're looking good for tomorrow. But Garcia's a tough competitor and only a hundredth or so slower than us. It will be a matter of who leaves first. The Dynagear/Sunnen Sonoma is competitive. This is the first time we've qualified in the top half of the field, and we were just ecstatic that we made it in, let alone qualify No. 7. We're fired up and ready. I really think we can win this thing tomorrow, or at least get to the semi finals. From there it's anybody's game." No. 7 qualifier - 7.587ET/176.35MPH

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Series NHRA
Drivers Bob Panella , Brad Jeter , John Lingenfelter , Greg Stanfield , Steve J