MEMPHIS, Tenn. (Sept. 26, 2008) – Friday’s qualifying sessions at Memphis Motorsports Park marked the first passes of Bob Tasca III’s career at the site of the 21st annual NHRA Mid-South Nationals.
Despite a solid A to B run during the night session, which saw the rookie driver post a 4.174-second pass to 1,000 feet, the driver of the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Shelby Mustang will be one of eight drivers competing for the final four qualifying spots still up for grabs for Sunday’s race.
“Obviously I think we were a little gun-shy after smoking the tires the first time down the track,” said Tasca. “Chris [Cunningham, crew chief] and I talked before that second run and we thought that the car was going to run a 4.15, 16, or 17, but were hoping to be closer to 4.15.”
Tasca’s time was just .007 of a second shy of the top 12 qualifying times that will carry over into Saturday.
“Before it was our turn that second time down the track, we saw a couple of drivers in front of us really struggle as soon as they hit the throttle, and we were conservative,” said the Rookie-of-the-Year candidate. “But the car went A to B and was really smooth for us. It really was a good run. It was a competitive session with a lot of big names still not in the show, but our team is up for the challenge and I know that we’ll have a successful day tomorrow.”
Tasca is seeking to make his 20th start of the season and his professional nitro Funny Car career.
NEWS/STATS AT A GLANCE:
– Qualifying Run No. 1: 4.659 ET / 180.81 mph
– Qualifying Run No. 2: 4.174 ET / 292.01 mph
– Tasca Racing recently broke ground on their new racing shop in Concord, North Carolina, with an expected complete date of February 2009.
– Tasca is running a full season and competing 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.