Mechanical problem ends the season for the White Cap Toyota Celica Funny Car. POMONA, Calif. (Nov. 11, 2002) - A fuel-pressure problem ended the day and season early for Bruce Sarver and the White Cap Toyota Celica Funny Car on Sunday at the...
Mechanical problem ends the season for the White Cap Toyota Celica Funny Car.
POMONA, Calif. (Nov. 11, 2002) - A fuel-pressure problem ended the day and season early for Bruce Sarver and the White Cap Toyota Celica Funny Car on Sunday at the 38th Annual Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals at Pomona Raceway in Pomona, Calif.
Sarver was in front of Tony Pedregon half way down the track in the first round of eliminations when a loss of fuel pressure cost him the victory and ended a successful first season for the White Cap Toyota Celica and Alan Johnson Racing. The Celica earned the fifth highest point total in the NHRA POWERade Funny Car class in its inaugural season.
"We're disappointed at not winning this weekend since we felt the White Cap Celica was really beginning to show its potential," said Sarver, a six-year drag racing veteran from Bakersfield, Calif. "Unfortunately, like today, we've had some strange mechanical problems get in the way of victory when we had the car to beat. Overall, we think it's just beginning to show what it can do, and I'm already looking forward to coming back to Pomona for the Winternationals next February."
Sarver, despite racing in only 16 of 23 events this season after taking over the driving duties of the White Cap Celica from Gary Scelzi, finished 11th overall in the Top Fuel Funny Car class. Since his debut in May at Englishtown, N.J., Sarver has earned the fifth most points in the class. Sarver is also one of only five drivers to have qualified for the Sunday elimination rounds in every race in which he has competed.
The White Cap Toyota Celica Funny Car has been a top-five car in the Funny Car standings with 1,215 combined points from Bruce Sarver and Gary Scelzi. In its first year of competition, the Celica Funny Car has produced three top qualifying positions (Topeka, Chicago and the October Las Vegas event), and five final-round appearances (Gainesville, Englishtown, Columbus, Seattle and Dallas). The White Cap Toyota Celica Funny Car is the only single-car team in the top five in points this season.
The White Cap Toyota Celica is the first manufacturer-backed import Funny Car in NHRA POWERade Series history. The car was developed using a production Toyota Celica GT-S as the baseline. The project, which began in the fall of 2001, was developed in conjunction with Swift Engineering, Inc., in San Clemente, Calif.