MADISON, Ill. (May 4, 2008) – Following two days of career-best runs at Gateway International Raceway, Bob Tasca III was defeated by Del Worsham in the first round of the NHRA Midwest Nationals.
“Del went out and knew that he had to put up a good number to race us, and he fired a shot off,” said the 12th place Tasca. “He took us seriously and knew that we were the real deal, and he went out and ran the low [ET] of the session. So you have to tip your hat to that team.”
Sunday was the first meeting between the driver of the Motorcraft/Quick Lane/Custom Accessories Shelby Mustang and Worsham, with Tasca missing the round win by just over one-tenth of a second.
“I had a great reaction time, which is what my job is as a driver,” said the rookie driver. “I got three hundredths off the starting line, which is big in this sport. I think there were two or three holeshot victories during the first round. As a driver I feel great, but obviously I know Chris [Cunningham, crew chief] is disappointed it didn’t have a little more tune-up in it.”
While disappointed about the first-round loss, Tasca continued to make strides during the weekend as he made his quickest career run down the quarter-mile with a 4.79 ET on Saturday.
“Chris has done just a tremendous job setting up this hot rod, the car just didn’t do what we expected it to today. I give all the credit for how far we’ve come since putting this team together in November to my crew chief and the guys on my team. We’re sneaking up on this thing. We’re only an eyelash out of the top 10 with a lot of racing to go, and certainly we’re working towards being in the top of the field come Indy.”
The NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series takes a week off before traveling to Bristol for the eighth annual O’Reilly Thunder Valley Nationals presented by Q May 16-18. The event will be the first visit to the Tennessee track for Tasca.
“When you’ve got a car running as good as this car is running, you just want to keep racing because you know your day is going to come. This sport requires consistency and it requires drivers to cut great reaction times that can put their team in a position to win. And then it just needs to be your time. It can go either way in rounds, and our day is coming. It isn’t that far around the corner the way this car is running.”
NEWS/STATS AT A GLANCE:
– Sunday Race Results:
– Elimination Round 1:
o Tasca: 4.924 ET / 310.13
o Worsham: 4.817 ET/ 316.30
– Tasca has made six nitro Funny Car starts.
– Worsham was the ninth different driver Tasca has faced in his nitro Funny Car career.
– Tasca’s current elimination round record is 4-6.
– Tasca is running a full season and for 2008 Rookie-of-the-Year honors.