Richmond: Hillary Will preview

Will looks to Torco Nationals to move up in points DINWIDDIE, Va. (October 4, 2006) -- The first of this season's final three races, that will officially end Hillary Will's rookie season, begins this weekend with the Inaugural NHRA Torco ...

Will looks to Torco Nationals to move up in points

DINWIDDIE, Va. (October 4, 2006) -- The first of this season's final three races, that will officially end Hillary Will's rookie season, begins this weekend with the Inaugural NHRA Torco Nationals at Virginia Motorsports Park located in Dinwiddie, Va., just a short drive from Richmond.

This will be the first time in five years that the NHRA circuit has contested an event at Virginia Motorsports Park. The series previously raced here from 1995 to 2000.

"Since we haven't raced at the Richmond track in some time, we are fortunate because our KB Racing Pro Stock teammate Greg Anderson tested there right before Reading," said Will's crew chief Jim Oberhofer, known to the majority as Jim O. "He has brought us up to date on the track surface and conditions. With that, the atmospheric conditions, and using notes from like tracks [at or near sea level], such as Englishtown under cooler conditions, we should be able to establish a base and tune from there.

"You go about it like any other race. You hope that the track has been prepared properly. Also, weather conditions, like cool, dry temperatures and/or cloud cover, will make a bad track look good. There are so many variables that go into making a track good. A lot of people think it's just spraying traction compound down and going, but you have to consider the whole package. How much rubber is down on the track. The type of rubber that is on the track. How the track is cleaned and prepped and thinks like that before traction compound goes down.

"There are just so many things that go into making a good racing surface. In the end, you cross your fingers and hope that you have the right conditions and the right tune up for those conditions."

Will, who has gone to one final round this season and is currently ninth in the NHRA POWERade Top Fuel point standings, is one of the leading candidates for the Automobile Club of Southern California Road to the Future Award. The award, which is decided by a distinguished panel of auto racing journalists, is presented to the outstanding rookie in a professional category, along with a check for $20,000.

Will, who drives the KB Racing LLC-owned, Kalitta Motorsports-managed Top Fuel dragster, continues her push to move up additional positions in the point standings. The 26-year-old driver originally from Northern California, who now calls Ypsilanti, Mich. home, is only 30 points out of eighth spot and 95 points behind seventh.

"Hillary is up to the challenge of moving up in the points," added Jim O. "She is driving well and her reaction times are right where they need to be. We tested after Reading and it was a success. We found some more speed and that should help us in the elapsed time department also. I feel we have the opportunity to climb as high as seventh and that we still have the ability, car and driver that can win a race before the year is out."

Qualifying for Will begins with two nitro sessions on Friday, Oct. 6, scheduled for 3:30 and 6:30 p.m. and concludes with two additional nitro sessions on Saturday, Oct. 7, at 12:30 and 3:30 p.m. Will begins her quest for the Torco Nationals Top Fuel title on Sunday, Oct 8, with eliminations for all classes beginning at 11 a.m. All times are local Richmond time (ET) and subject to change at anytime.

-credit: kb racing

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Series NHRA
Drivers Greg Anderson , Jim Oberhofer , Hillary Will