READING, PA (Sept. 18) -- Today in the 3rd round of qualifying at the 13th Annual True Value Keystone Nationals, Bruce Allen piloted The Outlaw Fuel Additives Pro Stock Pontiac Firebird to a career best 6.905 at 200.17 mph. This run makes Allen...
READING, PA (Sept. 18) -- Today in the 3rd round of qualifying at the 13th Annual True Value Keystone Nationals, Bruce Allen piloted The Outlaw Fuel Additives Pro Stock Pontiac Firebird to a career best 6.905 at 200.17 mph. This run makes Allen the 12th member of the prestigious Speed Pro 200 Mile-Pre-Hour Pro Stock Club. The run also improves his qualifying position by 1, to number 4.
Membership in the Speed Pro 200 Mile-Pre-Hour Pro Stock Club is granted to the first 16 racers to surpass the 200-mph plateau. Warren Johnson made the first ever 200-mph pass in Richmond, VA in 1997. Since that time there have been 11 drivers inducted into the exclusive club. After today there will be 12.
"Becoming a member of the 200 Mile-Pre-Hour Club is pretty cool," said Allen. "It's good to be part of a little bit of history. Running 200 is cool, but running that good and improving our ET is great. It's the best of both worlds, and that's what we're here to do. We are just starting to see the dividends of all the hard work we have put in to our motor development program. You always wonder if you're doing the right thing. The performance of this car confirms that we are. That's rewarding.
Allen's Crew Chief, David Reher, had this reaction to conquering the 200-mph milestone."This is great. We've been hoping it would come, and we knew it would eventually. We have been running as good or better than a lot of the cars already in the club," said Reher. "I thought it was going to come a lot earlier in the year. I'm just glad to have it."
After struggling all weekend with car handling problems, Mike Thomas, driver of the Pennzoil Pontiac Firebird, placed his car in the 15th spot with a last round, do or die effort. The 6.947 at 196.63 mph will pit Thomas against Kurt Johnson in the first round of eliminations on Sunday.
"I feel very lucky to have even qualified," said Thomas. "We got the car back from Jerry Haas, but there was still a lot of things that needed to be fixed. When to wreck a car even after it is repaired things are still not right. We struggled all weekend. To make matters worse, 5 minutes before we were scheduled to go to the staging lanes we discovered that the transmission was broken. We replaced the transmission and barley made it in time. I feel very fortunate to be in the field for tomorrow, especially with the points the way they are. This late in the season it is critical to qualify. We want to finish in the top 10 and are within striking distance. A DNQ now would put us out of it completely. We have a couple more things to work on tonight, but we will be ready for the first round."
Eliminations start at 11:00 AM EST on Sunday Sept. 19.