CONCORD, NC (Sept. 14, 2008) – Bob Tasca III started race day as the No. 12 qualifier for the inaugural NHRA event in Charlotte, and had a first-round matchup against Cruz Pedregon for the second race in a row. Unfortunately, the driver of the Motorcraft/Quick Lane also experienced his second red light start in a row.
“Today was just real frustrating, real, real frustrating,” said Tasca. “Just when we didn’t think that our luck could get worse. Cruz ran a [heck] of a run, and I ran an .027 red light, and I don’t know, maybe I’m just too aggressive. I saw the amber lights and I didn’t guess the tree. But hey, I didn’t do my job. We tip our hat to Cruz; he ran a 4.116 pass, which was the second-best low of the session. We didn’t have an 11 in the car; we had a .14 or .15 in the car, which is right around where everyone else ran.”
This was the fourth time Tasca competed against Cruz this season, and with Sunday’s first-round loss, will have to wait until next time for him to grab his first victory against the former champion.
“As a driver, you can’t go out there with the expectation of not giving yourself a chance, but you don’t want to red light,” said Tasca. “And I look at the video, and I don’t know. My eye just must be quicker than the light. I didn’t put the top bulb out and I wasn’t trying to do anything stupid. Obviously I need to be a whole lot shallower because I’m not going to slow my brain down. You want to hit the gas as fast as you can hit it, so I guess I just have to make a more conscious effort to put the car in shallower.
“But, at the end of the day, we’ll pick up and go to Dallas,” said the Rookie-of-the-Year candidate. “I can’t wait to get there because I want to race right now. I hate to have any time off. The next few races for us are going to be real important to perform. It’s all about building momentum for next year. And these last five races are where we want to see some progress on Sunday.”
Tasca and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane team will travel to Dallas, Texas next week to compete in the 23rd annual NHRA Fall Nationals.
NEWS/STATS AT A GLANCE:
SUNDAY RESULTS: Red light vs. Cruz Pedregon
– Elimination Round No. 1:
o Tasca: 5.194 ET / 151.99 mph
o Pedregon: 4.116 ET / 305.70 mph (WIN)
– The rookie driver maintains his position in 12th in the championship standings
– Tasca is running a full season and for 2008 Rookie-of-the-Year honors.
– Tasca began putting together his nitro Funny Car team in November 2007, for debut at the 2008 Winternationals at Pomona in February.
ABOUT THE DRIVER:
Bob Tasca III is a 32-year-old rookie in the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing nitro Funny Car class. Tasca competed the past three seasons in the Alcohol Funny Car class. Tasca is also a third-generation Ford dealer from Rhode Island.