DEARBORN, Mich, April 27, 2014 — Smoked tires at the starting line, likely due to traces of oil on the track, ended the first elimination race at the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA SpringNationals at Royal Purple Raceway in Houston before it began. The result was the second first-round elimination for Bob Tasca III and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Shelby Mustang Funny Car in as many events.
Fellow Mustang driver Robert Hight was the beneficiary of Tasca’s misfortune as Hight covered the 1,000 feet in 4.074 seconds at 313.29 mph. Tasca’s run was clocked at 12.008/63.19.
“All indications are that we picked up some oil on the track,” explained Tasca. “The two cars in front of us blew the tires off, too. The car never accelerated, never moved forward. It was like it was on ice.”
The Motorcraft/Quick Lane team came to Houston looking for the consistency it demonstrated in the first few races of the season but has eluded them recently. Things looked better as Tasca ran 4.231/291.45 in the first qualifying session, which was 6th quickest of the segment, even though he dropped a cylinder.
“We put a hole out, but it’s all good,” Tasca said after the first qualifying session. “We just wanted to go A to B.”
The next three qualifying sessions had the Tasca Racing crew scratching their heads. On Friday night, he shook the tires and ran 7.455/82.87. He shook the tires again in the third qualifying session and ran 8.503/82.26. Despite a broken engine, he got down the track in 4.483/214.08 during the last qualifying session but ended up in the 13th spot with an appointment with Hight in round one.
“In NHRA racing, anything can happen,” said Tasca after his final qualifying drive. “Our car was on a good run when we broke our engine.”
The next stop for the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series is the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Summer Nationals at Atlanta Dragway in Atlanta, Ga., May 16-18.
“There’s a lot of racing left this season but we’ve got to get this thing back on track in Atlanta,” he said. “That’s the bottom line.”
For live updates, follow the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Mustang team on Twitter (MQL_Racing) and Facebook (click on the “Twitter” icon). Follow driver Bob Tasca III on Twitter at @Tasca3 and Facebook.
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Now headquartered near Charlotte in Concord, N.C., Tasca Racing was founded by Legendary Ford dealer Bob Tasca, Sr., in Rhode Island in 1962, after he realized the incredible potential of “Race on Sunday, Sell on Monday” during drag racing’s infancy. At 16 years old, Bob Sr. started his first job at a Ford dealership. He opened his own Ford dealership at 27. Seventy years later, Tasca Ford still exists, run by the second and third generations of the Tasca family. Bob Tasca III, grandson of Bob Sr., has led the racing branch of the family since 2008 as driver of the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Shelby Mustang Funny Car. When he’s not involved with his race team, Bob III works at the family dealership. The Tasca family is proud to say more than 50 years after Tasca Racing was founded, the phrase “Win on Sunday, Sell on Monday” is alive and well within the Tasca team.