Gray out in Reading first round against Worsham READING, Pa. (Oct. 10, 2004) - Johnny Gray had a unique opportunity to be a spoiler in the 2004 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series Funny Car championship today in the first round of eliminations for...
Gray out in Reading first round against Worsham
READING, Pa. (Oct. 10, 2004) - Johnny Gray had a unique opportunity to be a spoiler in the 2004 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series Funny Car championship today in the first round of eliminations for the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals at Maple Grove Raceway.
If he had won the first round against Del Worsham, he would have virtually handed over the Funny Car to championship to John Force. Also, had he won, he would have given his teammates Gary Scelzi and Whit Bazemore some breathing space in the chase for second place in the series.
Gray gave it his best try, but he hazed the tires at just past half-track, crossing the finish stripe in the less-favorable right lane in 4.943 seconds at 293.86 mph to Worsham's winning 4.841/319.29.
"We left pretty much together," said Gray of his .121 reaction time to Worsham's .100. "We got put in the right lane, and the right lane's got those bumps in it. As soon as my car hit those bumps it started knocking the hoops loose, smoked the tires, and we started backing up from there.
"We made a good run, and we made a lot of progress this weekend. We feel real comfortable going into Vegas. Vegas is a good , smooth race track. We learned a lot this weekend. We're going into Vegas feeling like, if you want to make some money in Vegas, you'd better bet on us."
Gray drove the Matco Tools Iron Eagle-bodied Dodge Stratus in that round, as his Wonder Wagon Dodge Stratus body was damaged during the third round of qualifying.
In the first-round matchup beween Gray's teammates Whit Bazemore and Gary Scelzi, Scelzi took the win over Bazemore and continued to the final round, where he won his second event of the season against John Force.
Next up is the ACDelco Las Vegas NHRA Nationals, Oct. 29-31, the penultimate round of the 2004 NHRA season.