Topeka, KS – May 31, 2009 – In the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series, Bob Tasca III and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane team measure their success round by round. Despite a second round loss in Topeka, Tasca and the team discovered success in other aspects of the weekend.
In what seemed to be repeat of Bristol, Tasca would post the fastest time in the most difficult session of the weekend. During Saturday’s final session on a 127-degree track, Tasca and team found the sweet spot and posted the fastest run of the round, 4.25 seconds at 285.17 miles per hour.
In order to have the quickest car on Saturday afternoon, the Motorcraft/Quick Lane team put everything they had into the Shelby Mustang before unloading at the track. After a fire during the Bristol test, the team replaced several components and one of the most important pieces – the clutch.
“We have been having clutch issues ever since Gainesville and it came to a head in Bristol with the fire,” said Tasca. “Chris [Cunningham, crew chief] and the guys put a brand new clutch in our Motorcraft/Quick Lane Shelby Mustang this weekend. The guys made several adjustments to the clutch and other components for each run. I’m so proud of the Chris, Marc [Denner, co-crew chief] and all guys because they had the Mustang tuned to be the quickest in the field within three runs.”
Tasca would qualify in the ninth position for Sunday’s elimination rounds. He took his Motorcraft/Quick Lane Shelby Mustang Funny Car down the track in 4.231 seconds at 282.19 miles per hour.
During first round eliminations on Sunday, Tasca faced Daniel Wilkerson, who was making his Funny Car debut. Tasca was first off the line and defeated the 21-year-old Wilkerson. Tasca would face Ashley Force Hood in the second round of eliminations.
For the third time in three races, Force Hood was the No. 1 qualifier in the Funny Car class. Tasca was 0-2 against Force Hood and was looking to score his first round win against the Houston winner but fell approximately 31 feet short of that goal. Force Hood advanced to the next round.
“The Motorcraft/Quick Lane Shelby Mustang performed incredible on Sunday in both first and second rounds,” said Tasca. “We could have defeated five of the eight cars that we would have had to race in the second round. Obviously, we would have liked to go more rounds but we’ll take what we learned and move on to Chicago. We’re leaving Topeka somewhat unfulfilled because we don’t have a trophy, but definitely excited about getting into the other two races of this stretch with a hot rod that has been so consistent.”
Ron Capps defeated Ashley Force Hood in the final round to win the O’Reilly NHRA Summer Nationals at Heartland Park Topeka.
Full Throttle Points Standings – Funny Car
1. Ron Capps, 729; 2. Del Worsham, 610; 3. Ashley Force Hood, 603; 4. Tony Pedregon, 584; 5. Jack Beckman, 553; 6. Tim Wilkerson, 498; 7. Matt Hagan, 480;
8. Bob Tasca III, 460; 9. John Force, 453; 10. Cruz Pedregon, 420.