Seattle: Pontiac Racing Sunday notes

SEATTLE (July 30, 2000) - Final eliminations for the Prolong Superlubricants Northwest Nationals were completed today at Seattle International Raceway. PRO STOCK Richie Stevens (Valspar Refinish Pontiac Firebird) - "Everything fell into ...

SEATTLE (July 30, 2000) - Final eliminations for the Prolong Superlubricants Northwest Nationals were completed today at Seattle International Raceway.

PRO STOCK

Richie Stevens (Valspar Refinish Pontiac Firebird) - "Everything fell into place today. We switched back to our old car at this race and we were using our own engine so it was just like old times. It's been over a year since we won a race so we were overdue. I'm so excited for our Valspar team and all of our sponsors like Pontiac and Snap-on Tools. Everyone contributed to this win. We had four consistent runs, and the car just felt great. This is just such an exciting feeling. We used our own engine set-up today, and that is something our whole team is fired up about. We are looking forward to Sonoma and hoping we can do it again."

Mark Pawuk (Summit Racing/Matco Tools Pontiac Firebird) - "We ran real well last night with the Summit Racing/Matco Tools Pontiac Firebird, we just didn't make a good run today. The right lane was kind of tricky and we should've gone right down there but we didn't. The car went left and out of the grove and I had to shut if off. It's too bad because I think we could've done well. I am pretty disappointed. We were the second fastest car last night. We just have to get down the racetrack. No one in the right lane won, that's two races in a row. We just need to run better in qualifying so we can get lane choice." Ron Krisher (Eagle One Pontiac Firebird) - "We were just late that's all. It's a tough one to swallow. But they all are when you lose. The conditions were bad down track. The car starting shaking real bad. I am not sure why it did, but I'm also not sure why I wasn't with the program. But I didn't get it. Sometimes we're going to lose, you just have to take what you get. We out ran Jeg (Coughlin), but we didn't, it's just one of those days. It's all right we'll get them in Sonoma. We will figure out why the car was shaking and be ready. You can count on it."

Tom Martino (Century 21 Pontiac Firebird) - "We drastically changed our Century 21 Pontiac Firebird before today's first round, because we simply weren't happy with its performance in qualifying. Unfortunately, we ran through the clutch almost immediately on our run, which pulled us to the left and out of the groove. After that, I knew I wouldn't catch him, so we clicked it off early. We're going to go testing this Tuesday in Woodburn (Oregon) to see exactly what results came from the changes we made. From the limited information we got from today's run, there are a couple of a things that look real promising. Hopefully, we'll be able to gather enough information from our test session to go into Sonoma next weekend with a solid handle on how to make our car respond like it was earlier in the year."

Jim Yates (Splitfire/Peak Pontiac Firebird) - "We are really happy. It's obvious we have the power back in the Splitfire/Peak Pontiac Firebird where it needs to be. We ran really well that run. I wasn't real happy with how the tree was run that session. I had to wait 2.6 seconds for the green light. That is just not right. But we ran a 6.97, and for the conditions that's not too bad. We've made some minor changes, which has had a major effect on our car. The car seems to be coming around and we're extremely enthused and looking forward to Sonoma.

Bruce Allen (Reher-Morrison Pontiac Firebird) - "Right now we're trying to get this Reher-Morrison Pontiac Firebird to run better on race day. We made some big changes today, we didn't make it out of round one but it looks like we are heading in a direction we need to be going. It's not good for today but it might be in the long run. Other than Denver we have qualified at every race but haven't been going many rounds. We've had the problem with weather all year long, and we thought now would be a good time to work on a combination to work in the nasty, hot weather. We have Sonoma and Indianapolis and it can be hot at both of those places. So we wanted to go in a different direction for awhile until we get back to the nice cool tracks. To do better than what we've been doing we need a different kind of set-up."

FUNNY CAR

Tommy Johnson (Hofmann Racing Pontiac Firebird) - "Much better! It's a different car and a new body and it's paid off a lot. We're going to keep working on it and keep trying to improve the Hofmann Racing Pontiac Firebird. We're getting faster at each run. The first round is what we needed to be doing and in the second round the track bit us. We were struggling with the 75 minutes because we weren't used to that since we haven't been in many rounds. This was a morale booster for the whole team. Everybody's emotions were getting pretty down, and qualifying was a big boost and then to take out the number one qualifier is a huge morale boost, so everybody's attitude is up a little bit. It was getting tough for everyone to stay positive but today really helped out a lot."

Al Hofmann (Mooneyes/Red Line Oil Pontiac Firebird) - "Overall we had a fair weekend. It could've been better but it could've been a lot worse too. It dropped a cylinder in the first round and it's the first time it's done that. It's been running consistent 5.05s and that was what I was counting on but sometimes they just let you down. It's not Jim's (Dunn) tune-up, it was close but it just dropped a cylinder. I feel like we are going to start doing real well. It keeps coming and coming. I can see this Mooneyes/Red Oil Pontiac Firebird is heading in the right direction."

Cruz Pedregon (Teller Quick Pontiac Firebird) - "We had a good game plan for the Teller Quick Pontiac Firebird and it was working until eight tenths of a second into the run and we dropped a cylinder. I never saw Force until about a second into the run and from that point on I just stayed with it in case he smoked his tires or something. Once I smoked my tires I shut it down and decided to save it for another day. We came here and achieved our goal. We wanted to qualify, and try and win rounds, but the bottom line is we need more runs on the car. We'll go to Sonoma feeling pretty good and hopefully we will pick up the qualifying pace a little bit. Overall we feel like we had a good weekend. I'm a little rusty driving, but this is a good race to get that rust off and be ready for next weekend."

Del Worsham (Checker Schuck's Kragen Pontiac Firebird) - "That was our best lap of the weekend. In qualifying you stage real shallow, because all you care about is the ET number and if you're in shallow you get a little run at the timers before the clock starts. On race day, we roll in deep because all that matters is getting to the finish line first and you want to be as close as possible. So I was in deep there and ran a 5.00. If I was in shallow that was a 4.98 maybe. Cool stuff. The body on this car is hanging in there, but a close look shows how much of a beating it took when we blew it into the sky yesterday. We need some more duct tape. And or blue car won too, that's awesome."

After second round: "I cut a great light, and we were way out on him the whole way. It was our lap to win, flat out, but we got just a little out of the groove down there and spun the tires just a bit and that gave him enough to get around me. Man, I really thought we were going to have both Checker-Shuck's-Kragen Pontiacs in the semi-finals, and one of us would be in the final. But I am so proud of my team, both teams, for what we've done here this weekend. We've had part failures, we've blown the body off the car, and the blue team has been grinding it out with one of the most consistent cars on the property. Bot teams have worked so hard and we absolutely deserved every point we earned this weekend. We sure as heck didn't have any luck earned every bit of success we ahd here.

Frank Pedregon (Checker Schuck's Kragen Pontiac Firebird)- "Dave Fletcher shook his fist at me through the windshield and pounded on the injector once and that got me jazzed. Dave doesn't show a lot of emotion, but we had just watched Del win and we were all pumped. I was ready and the car was ready and this whole team was ready. This is the first time at a national event that we've both won in Round 1 together. We both won round 1 in Bristol, but that special race has round 1 on Saturday, so you get all night to get your stuff back together for round 2. This is the first time both teams are thrashing side by side to get back up there, and we'll both be ready."

After finals: Man, when you get to that point you know you've done well but all you really want to do is win. The guys are proud, they're upset we didn't get the trophy but they're all proud of what we did here. Red team, blue team, we're all Worsham Racing and we really are one big team. We knew John could throw any number in the book up there, so we added some blower to it and hoped that left lane would hold it. But it got out there a few hundred feet and blew them off. We worked awfully hard this weekend, and pushed our parts, ourselves, and everything to the extreme. We had our last motor in the car for that run. We'll be fully stocked up again when we get to Sonoma in a few days, but for what we brought with us this weekend, between the two teams, we used up most of our parts to try and get this win. I'm thrilled to say we're Runner-Up, and I promise we'll get back here again soon and get the win."

Bruce Sarver (e-moola.com Pontiac Firebird) - "It was a great weekend. The e-moola.com Pontiac Firebird was real consistent and went down the racetrack. We thought we had a good hotrod for today and the track was just a little better then what we thought and it shook and I pedaled it and then I was just down on power. We're looking forward to next weekend. All in all it's running real well."

TOP FUEL

Cory McClenathan (MBNA/Pontiac) - "The car ran good all weekend. I just messed up and left the line too early. It's as simple as that. It's a real shame. This MBNA Pontiac Dragster is running real well for us right now and it's the driver that messes up. I will work on that and will be ready at Sonoma."

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Bruce Sarver , Frank Pedregon , Mark Pawuk , Al Hofmann , Del Worsham , Ron Krisher , Tommy Johnson , Cruz Pedregon , Cory McClenathan , Bruce Allen , Tom Martino