Atlanta, Georgia – April 19, 2009 – Tasca and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Shelby Mustang team were hoping to bring home another win to commemorate the Mustang’s 45th Anniversary this weekend. Those plans were foiled with a first round loss to Tim Wilkerson.
Tasca and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane team attacked the Atlanta Dragway on Friday only to have runs that were too aggressive and left them out of the top-12 locked-in qualifying positions.
“Our goal was to qualify in the top half of the field in order to have lane choice. We knew the left lane was pretty difficult to navigate,” said Tasca on his qualifying effort. “We knew that if we weren’t in the top half, we were going to have our hands full.”
On Saturday, Tasca and the team posted two conservative runs and their best time of the weekend, a 4.148 second run at 297.81 miles per hour. The final effort on Saturday placed Tasca and his Motorcraft/Quick Lane Shelby Mustang in the 11th qualifying position heading into Sunday’s race.
“We were behind on Friday because we were trying put up some big numbers and we were just too aggressive. Saturday we had to go conservative and get qualified hoping that last run on Saturday would put us in the top half of the field because we really wanted to be in the right lane.”
During Sunday’s eliminations, Tasca faced technical alliance partner Tim Wilkerson. Tasca lost to Wilkerson in the first round of competition.
“We knew Wilkerson was going to run good because we share data,” said Tasca. “We knew what he was trying to run. We were trying to run the same as him but we were trying to do it in two different places because we knew we had that bump to contend with in the middle of the track. Unfortunately, out Motorcraft/Quick Lane Shelby Mustang hit the bump, we made it through that area and it got really out of control near the finish line. We had the tires spinning really hard and it was moving around. It was the most I ever drove a car at the top end of the track.”
Despite having the third consecutive first round loss this season, Tasca remains positive and plans to learn from Atlanta.
“You learn something every time you start the car,” said Tasca. “Our Motorcraft/Quick Lane Shelby Mustang tells us what it wants and what it likes. You have to take the good and leave the bad behind. It just didn’t go our way this weekend. You don’t like coming to a race track where lane choice makes that much of a difference and at this race track it makes a huge difference. We’re still early in the season and there is more racing to come. We’ve just got to keep moving forward and turn it around in St. Louis.”
Jack Beckman defeated Ashley Force Hood in the final round to win the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals.
Full Throttle Points Standings – Funny Car
1. Ron Capps, 464; 2. Jack Beckman, 295; 3. Ashley Force Hood, 394; 4. Tony Pedregon, 365; 5. Matt Hagan, 356; 6. Del Worsham, 327; 7. Bob Tasca III, 321; 8. John Force, 310; 9t. Robert Hight and Mike Neff, 305;
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