VANDERGRIFF GETS BACK ON TRACK IN ATLANTA COMMERCE, Ga., (May 8, 2006)- Bob Vandergriff Jr. returned to his drag racing roots in Commerce, Ga., for this weekend's running of the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals. The one-time ...
VANDERGRIFF GETS BACK ON TRACK IN ATLANTA
COMMERCE, Ga., (May 8, 2006)- Bob Vandergriff Jr. returned to his drag racing roots in Commerce, Ga., for this weekend's running of the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals. The one-time Vice President of Atlanta Dragway brought his UPS-backed Top Fuel dragster home to compete in front of family, friends, and his Alpharetta, Ga.-based sponsor.
"During the first session of qualifying we shook the tires real hard," explained crew chief Jim Dupuy. "We got aggressive on the second run. The car carried the front wheels for most of the run and drove out of the groove on our second pass. Saturday morning's pass was clean and we ran a 4.613 at 322.81 mph." This landed Vandergriff in the lucky No. 13 qualifying position for Sunday's elimination's and would draw NHRA POWERade points leader Melanie Troxel in the opening round. Vandergriff had the better reaction time, but Troxel began to pull away at half track and crossed the stripe just five-hundredths of a second in front of Vandergriff. The UPS entry ran it's best time of the weekend, a 4.602 second pass at 318.77 mph, that fell a little short of eventual runner-up Troxel's effort of 4.513 seconds at 326.63 mph.
"With very little test time so far this season," explained Dupuy. "We are behind the learning curve." Vandergriff chose to stay and test on Monday, making three very successful runs, the best of which was a 4.55.
The team moves onto to the Pontiac Performance NHRA Nationals at National Trail Raceway in Columbus, Ohio on May 18-21. Vandergriff seems to be holding on to that lucky number 13 as his position in the NHRA POWERade points chase.
"It looks like we've found the issue that we've been looking for," Dupuy said. "We feel good about going into Columbus with a very competitive car."
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