Tony Pedregon -- Getting used to New Ride Chandler, Ariz., February 10, 2004 -- Reigning Funny Car champion, Tony Pedregon and the Quaker State Racing team spent the last couple of weeks getting used to their new nitro-powered machine with ...
Tony Pedregon -- Getting used to New Ride
Chandler, Ariz., February 10, 2004 -- Reigning Funny Car champion, Tony Pedregon and the Quaker State Racing team spent the last couple of weeks getting used to their new nitro-powered machine with pre-season testing at The Strip in Las Vegas and Firebird International Raceway (FIR) in Chandler, Ariz.
Led by crew chief Dickie Venables, the team worked on several different tune-ups and combinations while Tony was getting used to his new roll as team owner and driver. "I spent most of the test session in Vegas just getting used to the car - where I sit and where all of the controls are, etc," said Tony. "By the end of the Vegas test session I felt very comfortable inside the cockpit."
Tony felt so comfortable that during his last test run in Vegas, he ran a 4.798 second elapsed time at 313.29 mph for his best pass in his new Quaker State Racing Funny Car and the second quickest run overall of the weekend. "We were very happy to end Vegas with that four-second pass," added Tony. "It was such a smooth run and the car felt really good going down the track. It gave us a lot of momentum and satisfaction."
After Vegas the team headed to FIR where the team made a series of short squirts and half-track passes getting timing issues worked out. "I think we made a lot of progress during our testing at FIR," said Tony. "We made several runs and we adapted to diverse conditions between the Vegas and FIR tracks. We're going to take what we've learned from both test sessions and go to Pomona. I've got a title to defend and I'm ready to take it on."
Tony will also be looking to defend his Winternationals title where he defeated Johnny Gray in the final round of the 2003 season opener. "We've had some great success at Pomona and there's no reason why we can't continue that this year. I'm extremely excited to have Quaker State on board and look forward to another memorable season."
The Quaker State Racing team begins their 2004 campaign on Feb. 19-22 at Pomona Raceway, in Pomona, Calif.