RICHMOND, Virginia. (Oct. 10, 2008) – While Bob Tasca III heads into Saturday qualifying at Virginia Motorsports Park sitting outside of the top 12 qualified competitors, the driver of the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Shelby Mustang and his team have their car headed in the right direction as the rookie driver put together his quickest pass ever in a Funny Car during the night session of qualifying.
“That 4.090 was the quickest run that I’ve ever had in a Funny Car,” said Tasca. “While the No. 1 qualifier ran a 4.04, you can’t run a 4.04 without knowing how to run a 4.09 first. We’ve been struggling lately on Friday night, but I wouldn’t call tonight’s 4.09 struggling. There are only two-hundredths of one second that separate us from being up into the fifth position, and we’re very excited about our performance.”
Even though they were the 13th quickest on the day, Tasca and his team were able to gather some valuable data from great conditions to use on Saturday as one of six teams competing for the final four spots available for Sunday’s 3rd annual Virginia NHRA Nationals.
“We just missed being in the top 12 and you rack your brain a little bit that a 4.090 didn’t get us into the field, but that’s one thing that makes this class so exciting. Anyone can win on any given day,” said Tasca. “This is not uncommon territory for us going into Saturday by missing it by just a hair, but the last two races we’ve showed significant improvement on Friday nights. We’ll take this data and improve on it. When you’re one of the cars in that first pair down the track, you’re at a huge disadvantage from the other drivers back in the field because when you run later, you know what you have to do to run quicker than the people that ran ahead of you. But I’m very happy with the 4.09 and with the data that we got today.
“I don’t think tomorrow’s conditions will be much different that what we saw today and I think we’ll see some great times tomorrow. To go into Saturday with already having run a 4.09 versus some of the other drivers that were a little bit slower or smoked the tires, I think that our team is in a really good spot for Saturday and we’re excited about tomorrow.”
NEWS/STATS AT A GLANCE:
– Tasca is one of five drivers in NHRA pro classes that are up for Rookie-of-the-Year honors for the 2008 season.
– The rookie driver entered this weekend sitting 11th in the championship standings
– Tasca Racing recently broke ground on their new racing shop in Concord, North Carolina, with an expected complete date of February 2009.
– 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.