King Demon Crown
4.801 lands "Madman" Burkart 11th
Chicago, Friday: Phil Burkart and his teammate Del Worsham had two things in common on Friday, at windswept and cool Route 66 Raceway: They both made a pair of full runs in the 4.8-second range, and both ran 4.80's in the final session. The only drawback to that scenario of consistency was the fact 4.7's were there to be had, and 4.6's were not uncommon on a this prime night for big-time drag racing. Burkart has the "Madman Murray" car situated in the No. 11 spot overnight, on the strength of his 4.801 in session two.
"We've dropped the number seven cylinder a few times now, and we did it again on that last run," Burkart said. "On that one, we got off the line very well and were on a pace for a nice 4.74 or something in that neighborhood. It made a little move for the center line, and I yanked it back pretty hard. It was okay after that, but then it must have dropped that cylinder because I could feel and hear that it was hurting. Can you picture a funny car driver, with his foot down, but with his eyes squinted and his muscles all tense because he's just waiting for the big boom and the orange glow? I was just thinking 'Leg it out, leg it out, and hold on baby...' as it went down there. It wasn't going to make it another foot after the finish line, but we got it there and shut it off.
"Honestly, I was pretty surprised it ran a 4.80. We just had so much momentum going from the front end of the track, even with a hole out down there we still ran decent. We all just wanted to run great, not decent. But, we should be able to come back and run a 4.7 tomorrow, one way or another. That's the plan for now, to put the Madman higher in the show."
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