NORWALK, Ohio, July 7, 2013—Bob Tasca moved into 10th in the NHRA Mello Yello Funny Car points standings with two great runs on race day after struggling in qualifying at the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals.
Five races remain in the regular season before the Countdown to the Championship playoffs begin, and every point is vital to teams virtually deadlocked around the cut-off. After Indianapolis, only the top 10 drivers in each category will be eligible for the 2013 championship title. Others become spoilers.
“It was an important day,” said Tasca, who moved around round-one teammate Robert Hight to the 10th spot. “You always want to come out here and win, but we struggled Friday and Saturday. It just shows how much confidence this team has with this race car right now. We knew conditions were going to be optimal this morning. We knew we had a great match-up with Robert (Hight). His car ran great all weekend. We just went back to a set-up we knew would go out and beat him. That was the kind of confidence level we had.”
Tasca defeated Hight in the first round with a 4.075-second pass at 317.72 mph, then came up against Courtney Force in round two. His 4.111 would’ve beaten five out of seven opponents he could’ve faced in the quarterfinals – unfortunately, Force wasn’t one of them. Her 4.089 sent her to the semifinals.
“In the second session, the car did exactly what we wanted it to do,” said Tasca. “We wanted to slow it down a little bit. We knew the track was getting warmer. A lot of cars in that second round smoked the tires. It was a good ole’ drag race between me and Courtney. That’s how crazy this sport is. It’s what makes it exciting for fans, but what makes it heartbreaking for the teams and drivers that come out here and leave it all on the line.”
Tasca and his team have shown consistent improvement over the past few weekends, capped off by a career-best time of 3.988 last weekend in Joliet, Ill.
“I’m proud of my guys,” Tasca said. “We fought the fight today, we just lost a very close drag race. It could’ve gone either way.”
The NHRA Mello Yello Series takes a weekend off before heading west for the famed Western Swing, a three-races-in-three-weekends stretch that takes the world’s fastest motorsport through Denver, Sonoma, Calif. and Seattle.
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 on Twitter at @Tasca3 and Facebook.
Tasca Takes 2012 Sweepstakes Winner Mark Whitmer on Parade Lap: The 2012 winner of Ford Customer Service Division’s Mustang 5.0 Fever Sweepstakes, Mark Whitmer of Plain City, Ohio, got an extra prize Sunday when Bob Tasca took him for a ride down the return road of Summit Motorsports Park in “Black Beauty,” the 5.0 Mustang Whitmer won in the sweepstakes last year when he was randomly selected from 128,568 entries.
He entered at the Motorcraft/Quick Lane display in Indianapolis last season.
“I’ve met a lot of people, but none more excited than Mark was,” Tasca said. “He went from smiling to crying, I think, all in the same breath. It was exciting. That’s what the contest is all about, a guy like Mark that is passionate about cars and so appreciative for the opportunity to win that 5.0 Mustang, and he said to take him down the track will certainly be one of the more memorable moments of his life.”
You can enter the Mustang 5.0 Fever Sweepstakes at select NHRA Mello Yello Series events and online at: https://www.mustang50fever.com/
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Now headquartered near Charlotte in Concord, N.C., Tasca Racing was founded by legendary Ford dealer Bob Tasca Sr. in Rhode Island in 1962, after he realized the incredible potential of “Race on Sunday, Sell on Monday” during drag racing’s infancy. At 16 years old, Bob Sr. started his first job at a Ford dealership. He opened his own Ford dealership at 27. Seventy years later Tasca Ford still exists, run by the second and third generations of the Tasca family. Bob Tasca III, grandson of Bob Sr., has led the racing branch of the family since 2008 as driver of the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Shelby Mustang Funny Car. When he’s not involved with his race team, Bob III works at the family dealership. The Tasca family is proud to say more than 50 years after Tasca Racing was founded, the phrase “Win on Sunday Sell on Monday” is alive and well within the Tasca and Ford team.