Tasca, Motorcraft/Quick Lane Team Take on Tony Pedregon in Round 1 of U.S. Nationals after Rain-Shortened Qualifying

INDIANAPOLIS, Sept. 2, 2012–Bob Tasca III and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Shelby Mustang Funny Car team face Tony Pedregon in Round 1 of the U.S. Nationals after rain forced cancelation of the final two qualifying laps on Sunday at Lucas Oil Raceway.

Tasca advanced to eliminations in the 11th spot with the 4.107-second pass at 303.50 mph he clocked in the first session.

“We were really hoping to get a shot at qualifying today to move up in the standings, but the weather just didn’t cooperate,” Tasca said. “We had plenty of time to prepare for eliminations.”

In the last six months, Tasca’s 2012 season has stacked up exactly like 2011 did for the fifth-year pro driver. At this time last year, Tasca was 10th in the NHRA Full Throttle Series point standings, ready to defend his playoff spot at the biggest race of the year – the U.S. Nationals at Indianapolis.

He battled all the way to the finals and left with a runner-up finish and the number eight spot in points. This year, once again, he’s 10th in points and looking to go rounds after making a crew announcement Sunday.

On Saturday before the third qualifying session, Tasca and Crew Chief Dickie Venables, hired earlier this year, decided mutually to part ways.

Longtime Tasca tuners Chris Cunningham and Marc Denner, who have been with the team since Tasca’s first year in 2008 as Crew Chief and Co-Crew Chief, continue to fill those roles.

“I respect Dickie and the experience he brought to our team, and I wish him well,” Tasca said.

“I’ve said it many times and I’ll say it again. I’ve never had a stronger, better team than I have now. I have complete confidence that my team will continue to give me one of the strongest Funny Cars out there day in and day out. For us, this weekend is all about moving up in those point standings so we can comfortably keep our spot in the playoffs and that continues to be our focus.”

Watch eliminations from noon-6 p.m. ET on Monday, Sept. 3, 2012.

For live updates, follow the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Shelby Mustang team on Twitter (MQL_Racing) and Facebook (click on the “Twitter” icon). Follow driver Bob Tasca III on Twitter at @Tasca3 and Facebook.


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