BECKMAN FINISHES IN QUARTERS AT WINTERNATIONALS POMONA, Calif. (Feb. 10, 2008) - Driving the Valvoline/Mail Terminal Services Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car from No. 15, Jack Beckman advanced to the quarterfinal round today at the NHRA ...
BECKMAN FINISHES IN QUARTERS AT WINTERNATIONALS
POMONA, Calif. (Feb. 10, 2008) - Driving the Valvoline/Mail Terminal Services Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car from No. 15, Jack Beckman advanced to the quarterfinal round today at the NHRA Winternationals at the Auto Club Raceway after defeating his teammate Jerry Toliver in the opening round of eliminations.
In the second round, Beckman scorched the starting lights with a remarkable .014-of-a-second reaction time (.000 is perfect) to opponent Cruz Pedregon's .048. But a dropped cylinder slowed the Valvoline/MTS Dodge to a 5.122-second elapsed time at 295.21 mph at the finish stripe, as Pedregon drove to victory by a .0786-of-a-second margin (5.010/303.84).
"It's interesting," said Beckman, who holds the national speed record of 333.66 mph, set here in 2006. "It's not many times you get an opportunity where a 5.04-second pass would win a race, especially against Cruz Pedregon, and that's all we needed. And we didn't have it.
"We're having a problem dropping cylinders. It's a newer problem here and it's something we've got to address, because it not only makes the car slower, it makes it very tough to get usable data, and it's really hard on parts. It's 12-and-a-half percent harder on every other part when you drop a cylinder. So, it's one of those things.
"At half-track I was getting a whip and hitting the thing like a horse to make it go faster and I just saw Cruz motoring on by out the side window.
"The upside, though, is that these Valvoline/MTS crew guys are brand new as a team, as a unit, and we're going to leave here in the top 10. The qualifying issue (new format this year) is going to be just like last year. I bet you every team will have one DNQ this year. We got in the show, we won a round, we got some points, and we've just got to keep plugging away."