This spot for your company
Sept 29, 2004
Top Final elimination's
In Top Fuel, all top half qualifiers advanced to the second round in a strong field of competitors. All nineteen cars who entered ran four second ET's in qualifying including Gary Ormsby Jr. who was in his first ever race in the Top Fuel class. By the time the semi finals came up, only one top three competitor was left in the field and it was leader Tony Schumacher. He had a chance to moved further up in the points at the expense of all lower than him, particularly Doug Kalitta. Tony prevailed over rookie Morgan Lucas in one semi final and he would face #4 in points Dave Grubnic who defeated teammate Scott Kalitta in the other semi. The final round was a great race, with Grubnic taking a slight advantage at the starting line, but the Alan Johnson tuned Army car slowly reeled him in, and pulled away for a .04 margin of victory. The win adds another 57 to his lead in the standings with only four races remaining
Funny Car Final Elimination's
Funny Car qualifying ended with a solid 4.90 field and John Force dominating with a weekend best 4.78. All three Force cars advanced to round two and two went to the semi finals, and all three Schumacher cars were ousted by the end of round two. It was four team cars in the semis, with Force and Medlen facing Worsham and Cruz Pedregon respectively. The Force juggernaut was ousted when John went red and Medlen was leaking fluids after the burnout. This would be the first final round for Del Worsham in nine races (his last was a win in Columbus). Cruz was in his third final round (his second in a row). It was another very good final round, with Del taking a .02 lead at the start and outrunning Cruz 4.93 to 4.94. The lead at the top of the standings was expended by 22 points with Force leading Gary Scelzi by 228 with four races remaining.
Pro Stock Final Elimination's
The order of the day in Pro Stock one of surprise. Greg Anderson would clinch the title with a first round win over #14 qualifier Kurt Johnson. Well, he did not win that race, as Johnson scored a huge upset, but he still got the championship when almost all the top half performers went out in round one. Only two advanced form the top half and they were Dave Connolly and Steve Johns. Anderson's team mate Jason Line was in second and had the only mathematical chance to catch Greg for the title. His 13 wins so far will probably become 15 by years end, and that will be a feat that will be unmatched for possibly the history and future of the NHRA. Dave Connolly went on to win the race over Bruce Allen in the final round, despite the Texas crowd loudly vocalizing for their home state boy. With the chase for the title over, the only question now, is, will Line stay in second or will Connolly's 40 point deficit by made up in the last four races.
The Nitro Harley elimination's are here
The Pro Mods are here
Sportsman is here.
Sept. 27, 2004 ENNIS, Texas----Final qualifying
"Facing Kurt in the first round is perfect," Anderson said of his former teammate. "We have a lot of history together and Im sure both of us will be looking forward to it. This is where we clinched our championship last year and I would like nothing more than to do it here this year too, especially since its two races earlier than last year."
Should Anderson beat Johnson in their first round meeting, it would be the earliest that any NHRA driver has clinched a championship title. In 1996 John Force secured his sixth championship in the semifinals at Indianapolis with four races remaining on the schedule.
Kalitta claimed his fifth No. 1 effort of the season and the 21st of his Top Fuel career by posting a 4.536-second run at 306.26 mph in his Mac Tools dragster.
"We just wanted to get a good run in without throwing out the rods," said Kalitta, who had engine troubles during both of his Friday passes. "We drove it on down through there with a 4.61 and it was nice and clean at the other end so we're feeling a lot better about tomorrow. We figured out we had too much compression so we put a different injector on there. Then it was just a matter of getting the fuel mixture right.
A winner at the Motorplex in 2002, Kalitta desperately needs another victory here tomorrow to keep his championship hopes alive against leader Tony Schumacher, who qualified fourth in the U.S. Army dragster.
We need to be ready to go tomorrow because there aren't any gimmes, Kalitta added. We could get (Tony) Schumacher in the semis so if we can take him out and win the race we'll gain two rounds back. That would be huge."
Force earned his fifth top qualifying effort of the year and the 122nd of his career in Funny Car by clocking a 4.784 at 324.20 in his Castrol GTX Start Up Ford Mustang. It was his 11th No. 1 at the Motorplex, a track Force says is one of his favorites.
"The competition out here is the best that it's been since I've been racing Funny Car," said Force, who has earned six of his 113 career victories at the Texas track. There isn't just three or four hitters any more, there's 16 guys who can win at this event. Every one of these guys has run 4.80s before and if you can run 4.80s, you can win races, plain and simple."
Coughlin earned his first No. 1 effort in more than a year and eighth overall by powering his Jegs Mail Order Chevy Cavalier to a track record performance of 6.774 at 204.35.
"Our last No. 1 qualifier was last year in Memphis so this feels real good," Coughlin said. "We've had a real resurgence over the last three races. We rolled out with three new motors and have picked up each race since then. We did well in Brainerd, finished in the semifinals at both Memphis and Indy, and now here we are. We'll see if we can't go coast-to-coast tomorrow.
Coughlin, a two-time NHRA world champion, hopes his late season surge is a sign of good things to come as he and the rest of the Pro Stock community continue to try and find a way to beat Anderson.
"There have been a few other teams challenging Greg (Anderson) and now we're getting into the mix, Coughlin said. I hope we can finish 2004 strong and get into the top five. Plus we'd like to get a win. There have only been four winners in the class this year and I'd like to be No. 5."
Sept. 24, 2004 Friday qualifying recap (courtesy NHRA)
John Force raced to the qualifying lead in Funny Car
Friday at the OReilly Fall Nationals presented by Castrol Syntec at
the Texas Motorplex.
Force powered his Castrol GTX Start Up Ford Mustang down the famed all-concrete quarter-mile in a leading time of 4.784 seconds at 324.20 mph to pace the 16-car field. "Billy (Meyer, track owner) was a Funny Car guy so he built a track that he knew would work good for Funny Cars," Force said. "The track was good tonight and so was the air so we were able to put a good number up there. Plus, we ran a 4.91 in the opening round so we knew we could push it tonight and still be safe if we smoked the tires. Force, a six-time winner at the Motorplex, is trying to put the finishing touches on a record 13th NHRA world championship and he says every point counts this late in the season. "(Crew chief Austin) Coil says I've got the best car I've had in the last 10 years, Force said. It runs good at night and it runs good in the day, in the heat. That's important. We need the best car because we need to earn points, even in qualifying, and get this championship done. That's what we're thinking about right now." Tony Pedregon was second with a 4.810 at 318.02 in the Quaker State Chevy Monte Carlo, while Whit Bazemore drove his Matco Tools Dodge Stratus to a third place effort of 4.834 at 322.04.
Doug Kalittaraced to the front of the Top Fuel lineup with a 4.536 at 306.26 in his Mac Tools dragster, however at the end of both of his qualifying attempts today his car suffered minor engine explosions. "We tried a different (set up) with the injector and blew it up pretty good," Kalitta said. "But until it threw the rods out we were running strong. The car quit at about 1,000 feet that time so it probably had a lot more in there. We're upset about blowing up but happy to get a good number up there and put our team in a good position for Sunday. Like Force, Kalitta hopes to maximize points earning opportunities in the last five races. However, unlike Force, he is chasing series leader Tony Schumacher, who experienced mechanical problems on the second of two runs today and is currently ninth with a 4.633 at 317.57 in his U.S. Army dragster. "We can't be blowing anything up on race day, Kalitta said. Our chances of catching Schumacher are getting pretty scarce. If we don't gain a big chunk at each of these last few races we're in trouble. But I have a great group and we'll stay after it and see what happens." Kalitta teammate David Grubnic is second with a 4.540 at 322.11 in the Red Line Oil dragster, while Cory McClenathan posted a 4.585 at 305.70 in his Carrier Boyz/Berryman dragster for third overall.
Jeg Coughlin drove his Jegs Mail Order Chevy Cavalier to a track record performance of 6.775 at 204.20 to lead the Pro Stock order. From daytime to night this track gets so much better," Coughlin said. "And today, especially after the fuel cars ran a round and filled in the bare spots, this track was great from start to finish. My guys did a good job of hitting the set-up just right and we were able to open strong. We're happy. Weve got a new motor in the car and it's satisfying and a real credit to our guy's labor that we've been able to close the gap on Greg Anderson and the two Grump-powered cars. Like I said, we're pretty happy right now." Anderson, who could clinch his second POWERade Series world championship this weekend, was second with a 6.786 at 203.55 in his Summit Racing Pontiac Grand Am. Anderson needs to qualify in the top four and advance to the second round in order to claim the series crown.
Top Fuel final qualifying
Funny Car final qualifying
Pro Stock final qualifying