Roger Bateman Noble preview

Bateman returns to Oklahoma as No. 1 qualifier NOBLE, Okla. - In the world of NHRA Drag Racing, sometimes your competition isn't your only opponent. Mother Nature can be a formidable adversary. Such was the case for the ...

Bateman returns to Oklahoma as No. 1 qualifier

NOBLE, Okla. - In the world of NHRA Drag Racing, sometimes your competition isn't your only opponent. Mother Nature can be a formidable adversary. Such was the case for the NobelSmile.com Motorsports Top Alcohol Funny Car team driven by Roger Bateman at the Division 4 Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series event at Thunder Valley Raceway just outside of Oklahoma City. The team was able to qualify No. 1 before heavy rains postponed the event to this weekend.

Bateman, who made the haul from Calgary, Alb., placed the Brian Friesen owned and Ken Murray tuned Chevy Camaro on the pole with a 5.658 second elapsed time at 254.81 mph. In round one, he is scheduled to face fellow Division 5 racer Kirk Williams.

"This is our first time to qualify No. 1 as a team," said Friesen. "This is really good for the team. We're just creeping up on it a little at a time. We really like the slow progression we're making. We just hope to pick up where we left off and make a strong showing for NobelSmile.com. We still have a shot at finishing in the top ten nationally if we finish the year strong."

"The first thing we have to do is survive the first round," added Bateman. "Every car up here can run well. Two weeks have passed since we last ran here, so you just can't go back to what you were running. We'll just take a look at what we have to work with and make an educated guess."

"We're really starting to get a solid baseline," Bateman continued. "The crew is really coming together as well. We can qualify just about anywhere we go, and you have to qualify before you can win."

The alcohol cars will receive one test and tune run, then proceed directly into eliminations Friday.

-credit: nsm

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Series NHRA
Drivers Kirk Williams
Teams Williams