CARQUEST Auto Parts NHRA Winternationals
Worsham off to respectable start
Pomona, Thursday: Del Worsham drove his Checker, Schuck's, Kragen Chevy wire-to-wire on his first lap of the 2008 campaign, but a dropped cylinder on the left bank kept his E.T. in check. He clicked through the lights in 4.967 seconds, at 317.79 mph, to land ninth after one day.
"I'm glad we made a full pass, but I'm disappointed we put a hole out," Worsham said. "There are usually some cylinders that just consistently give you trouble, but we dropped number three and that one usually doesn't give us much grief, so we'll have to look everything over to see what went on there. Whatever it was, it doesn't appear to anything mechanical because it picked it back up again about two seconds into the run. If something was broken in there, it wouldn't have healed itself half-way down the track. Still, it's good to get the first pass down the track, and it's a baseline to work from.
"We got the qualifying sheet after the lap and it was the first one we've ever seen with the new qualifying format in place. The cut-off line, after the No. 12 spot, is on there instead of the old 16th deal, but I don't think there's any way the new system will come into play here this weekend. It's basically a rule for the summer, when the Friday night session makes it impossible to improve on Saturday, and it gives those teams at the bottom of the sheet a chance to get in no matter how hot it gets, but here we have four very similar runs, no 'hero session', and the weather is usually so consistent you can be No. 1 after any of the four laps. We plan to be right up there in the thick of it by the time we leave here tomorrow night."
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