ROOKIE CANDIDATES TASCA AND NEFF TO BATTLE FIRST ROUND

KENT, Wash. (July 19, 2008) – Sunday’s first round elimination meeting between Bob Tasca III and Mike Neff will be an all-Ford, all-rookie matchup.

“It’s exciting,” said Tasca on his first meeting against fellow rookie, Neff. “This is what NHRA racing is all about. This is the type of win that we’re going to need to get to move up into the top 10 and hold our position.”

After using both qualifying runs on Friday to work on his team’s 60-foot time, Tasca went out in the heat on Saturday at Pacific Raceways, not yet qualified, and earned the No. 13 qualifying position for Sunday’s NHRA Nationals.

“We really did learn a lot during Friday’s runs, unfortunately, it didn’t show on the scoreboard,” said the Rhode Island resident. “Saturday morning we came out and had the best 60-foot time that the car has ever had. We had a .906-second time to 60 feet, and we were right in the hunt with the fastest cars out here today.”

The driver of the Motorcraft/Quick Lane/Custom Accessories Shelby Mustang entered this weekend’s race in the No. 11 position in the points, just two outside of the all-important top 10.

“I think we’re about to catch stride here on Sunday,” said Tasca. “We’ve done very well on Fridays and Saturdays this season, we just need to get it together on Sunday. It’s only a matter of time; you’ve just got to stick to your game plan. You’ve got to race the racetrack and forget who is in the other lane.

“Mike is a phenomenal driver and he’s done an exceptional job this year in his first year in the car,” said Tasca. “I know that Mike is going to run his car in his lane and I’m gonna run my car and my lane and at the end of the day, we’ll see where the chips fall.”

Sunday’s race is the 14th race of the 24-race NHRA drag racing schedule. It is also the first race for Tasca at the Washington track, and the second of the three-in-a-row races that make up the Western Swing.

NEWS/STATS AT A GLANCE:

– Voting for the car design that will be featured on Tasca’s Funny Car at the U.S. Nationals continues through July 31 at www.jdrf.org/ford. Currently, the design contest has raised more that $33,000 dollars for research for type 1 diabetes.

SATURDAY TIMES:

Qualifying run No. 3: 4.129 ET / 295.46 mph

Qualifying run No. 4: 4.192 ET / 292.77 mph

FRIDAY TIMES:

Qualifying run No. 1: 9.223 ET / 71.66 mph

Qualifying run No. 2: 4.130 ET / 302.08 mph

– Sunday is the first meeting between Rookie-of-the-Year candidates, Tasca and Mike Neff.

– Tasca will make his 13th start of the season this weekend in Denver

– Tasca is running a full season and 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.

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