Shelly Howard Baytown preview

Howard ready to start year, again.   BAYTOWN, Texas - With the car loaded up, bags packed, and diesel truck running ready to go to the season opener in Dallas two weeks ago, NHRA Division 4 Top Alcohol Dragster Champion Shelly Howard got the call...

Howard ready to start year, again.   BAYTOWN, Texas - With the car loaded up, bags packed, and diesel truck running ready to go to the season opener in Dallas two weeks ago, NHRA Division 4 Top Alcohol Dragster Champion Shelly Howard got the call that the race was rained out.  Now with an extended case of offseason cabin fever, Howard and her team are ready to hit the track at this weekend's Division 4 Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series event at Houston Raceway Park.   Howard, a registered nurse in Tulsa, Okla., when not racing, hopes preseason testing will help her team be ready to start the season this weekend.   "The testing is not only good for the data you collect and learn from, but it is good for everybody on the team to get back into the swing of things," said Howard.  "Joe Monden has been moved to crew chief, and we have several new guys on the crew, so I think that was critical coming down here last month and testing.  It also helps me as a driver knock some of the rust off.  We're going to do some more testing on Thursday, so we hope to improve some more before the race begins."   Despite making the finals of this event the past three years, winning two of them (last year and '01), Howard feels she has no advantage at this track.   "We've done well here in the past and enjoy racing here, but we feel we have no real advantage," stated Howard.  "Every weekend starts a new race, and nothing you've done before has any bearing when the light turns green.  We just worry about the run at hand, and try to do our best; that's really all you can do."   Qualifying begins Friday for the alcohol cars with two more sessions on Saturday.  Final eliminations will conclude the event on Sunday.  For the latest news in alcohol racing, stay tuned to InsideTopAlcohol.com.   To find out more about the team, visit their website at ShellyHoward.com   -shr-

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Series NHRA
Drivers Shelly Howard