SONOMA, Calif. (July 26, 2008) – After entering the second day of qualifying at Infineon Raceway without a recorded qualifying time, Bob Tasca III and his Motorcraft/Quick Lane/Custom Accessories Shelby Mustang team put together two solid runs in the heat to earn the No. 15 qualifying position for Sunday’s NHRA Nationals.
“The drivers that can put down solid runs in the heat on Saturday, are the ones that should do well tomorrow,” said Tasca. “We had a pretty quick run that last time down the track. Truthfully, we were a little bit behind the eight ball, because on our first run we lost a cylinder right when we hit the throttle. The car was on seven cylinders the entire time down the track. It was good enough to get us qualified, but it wasn’t really good data to know if we were pushing the race track too much with the tune-up we had in it.”
Tasca’s first trip to 1,000 feet on Saturday resulted in a 4.382-second, 280.19 mph run, while his second and best run of the weekend, was 4.276 ET, at 282.72 mph.
“What we decided to do for the final sessions, was to leave the car alone because we knew that on eight cylinders, it would run substantially better than the 4.38 run we had in our first run,” said the rookie driver. “We were shooting for a 4.25 or 4.26 on the second run, and the car ran a 4.27. That run there gave us really good data for Chris to make a decision on for tomorrow.”
Tasca’s qualifying position puts him up against his best friend, Tony Pedregon, for third time this season. The two previously competed in Atlanta and Topeka, with Tasca coming away victorious in both runs.
“There is no easy draw out here, and I get my dear friend, Tony Pedregon, in the first round tomorrow,” said Tasca. “And knock on wood, I’ve had a little bit of luck against him this season. At the end of the day, you race your lane, you race the race track, and you hit the gas and let destiny play its hand. I feel really good about how the car ran today and the data that we acquired. When it’s your day it’s your day, and hopefully tomorrow’s ours.”
Tasca entered this weekend’s event 22 points outside of the top 10, and will look to improve his position in the standings in his 14th career nitro Funny Car race on Sunday.