Series Charlotte, Mempphis incident notes

NHRA PROVIDES PRELIMINARY INFORMATION AFTER FUNNY CAR INCIDENTS IN CHARLOTTE, MEMPHIS GLENDORA, Calif. (Oct. 8, 2009) -- Preliminary results of NHRA's investigation into two separate incidents involving Funny Car at both the NHRA Nationals in ...

NHRA PROVIDES PRELIMINARY INFORMATION AFTER FUNNY CAR INCIDENTS IN CHARLOTTE, MEMPHIS

GLENDORA, Calif. (Oct. 8, 2009) -- Preliminary results of NHRA's investigation into two separate incidents involving Funny Car at both the NHRA Nationals in Charlotte, N.C. and the O'Reilly NHRA Mid-South Nationals in Memphis, Tenn. suggests the problems are not related in anyway, according to NHRA Technical officials.

The first incident involved Bob Tasca and his Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Shelby Mustang. The wheel was immediately examined by NHRA Technical Department personnel and after the event, was sent to the SFI Foundation, Inc. for further inspection. The wheel has also been examined by the original fabricator. Based on initial inspections, NHRA issued a technical bulletin advising teams of wheel inspection and maintenance issues. In the meantime, the wheel is continuing to be examined by SFI and has been sent to a metallurgist for further evaluation.

In Memphis, NHRA tech officials examined the wheel components in the incident involving Dan Wilkerson and his Levi, Ray & Shoup Ford Mustang. After initial examinations and discussions with team owner, Tim Wilkerson, NHRA has determined that the wheel was not properly installed.

"We believe that both wheels lug nuts were not properly torque due to misaligned wheel spacers," said Wilkerson. "That contributed to the loss of the wheels during the run."

This week, NHRA's technical department issued a technical bulletin on proper installation of the wheels with and without spacers. Further metallurgical analysis is planned on the wheel studs from the Wilkerson vehicle to determine if any other factors were involved in the incident.

As in all incidents, NHRA will also examine data recorded by the Ford Accident Recorders and the on-board data acquisition systems from both cars to further analyze these incidents.

"While we have some strong preliminary information from both incidents at this time, it is important to make sure that a thorough analysis is done," said Glen Gray, NHRA Vice President of Technical Operations. "If any additional information is obtained from the investigations of either incident, it will be shared immediately with our Top Fuel and Funny Car teams."

-credit: nhra

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Series NHRA
Drivers Tim Wilkerson