POMONA, Calif. (Nov. 9, 2000) - Dale Eaton stunned the Pro Stock Truck field when he grabbed the second qualifying position in his Team Mopar Dodge Dakota R/T in Thursday's first session for the Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals...
POMONA, Calif. (Nov. 9, 2000) - Dale Eaton stunned the Pro Stock Truck field when he grabbed the second qualifying position in his Team Mopar Dodge Dakota R/T in Thursday's first session for the Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals at Pomona Raceway.
Eaton, who hasn't qualified for an event this season, ripped off a 7.577-second elapsed time at 176.74 mph in the left lane.
"We're pretty pleased with ourselves," Eaton said. "We put in a new Magnum P-5 engine and you can see the difference. We did some testing last weekend and found a lot of horsepower. We haven't done a lot of dyno testing, so we think there is something left in it.
"We're ending the year on a high note," Eaton continued. "It's so nice to see because we've really struggled this season."
Dean Skuza and the Matco Tools.com/Mopar Parts Dodge R/T Nitro Funny Car also took home the second-qualifying position with a stout 4.921/307.86 outing. The Brecksville, Ohio resident is shooting for his second No. 1 qualifying effort of the season.
"That run just fortified our thoughts going into the pass," Skuza said. "We thought we had a good combination and it worked well. I'm pretty pleased with where we started."
Craig Eaton, Dale's son and driver of the Dodge Motorsports Dakota R/T, drove to the 13th-qualifying position with a 7.628/176.10 combination.
"I can't complain," C. Eaton said. "We are very happy and we have a lot left in it too. We really spun the tires off the starting line."
Darrell Alderman headed the Pro Stock contingent when he drove his Team Mopar Dodge R/T to the solid sixth-place qualifying position. The three-time NHRA Winston Pro Stock World Champion ran a 6.954/197.48 effort.
"It felt pretty good," said the 27-time NHRA national event winner. "We got loose out there and it hurt our time a little. Once the track tightens up, we'll get better. There is a lot left in it."
Alderman's teammate and driver of the other Team Mopar Dodge R/T Scott Geoffrion collected the 13th-qualifying position at his home track. The San Juan Capistrano, Calif., native clocked a 6.987/196.36.
"There isn't any race track out there," said Geoffrion, the current elapsed-time record holder. "It was really loose out there, especially in third gear."
Larry Morgan drove his Dodge Motorsports R/T to the 15th-qualfying position with a 7.002/195.68 effort.
"It was a bad run," Morgan said. "We left really hard and moved to the left. I got out in the marbles and it killed the run."
Todd Patterson and the Dodge Motorsports Dakota R/T missed the field when he ran 7.656/175.66.