Toyo Tires NHRA Nationals
Cory Mac eyes Budweiser Shootout points at Reading
While his focus will be on winning this weekend’s NHRA Toyo Tires Nationals at Maple Grove Raceway, near
“With Top Fuel racing as close as it is, you need to qualify high each race just to have lane choice in that opening round,” said McClenathan. “But qualifying is twice as important for this Carrier Boyz Racing team as we try to gain a guaranteed spot in the Budweiser Shootout.”
The Budweiser Shootout is a special event held during the NHRA ACDelco Las Vegas Nationals. This year's Shootout will take place Oct. 22 at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
The Shootout field is restricted to eight Top Fuel drivers based on qualifying points earned at the NHRA national events completed since the previous year’s Shootout. Points are awarded based on how a driver qualifies at each event as follows: No. 1 qualifier earns 175 points, No. 2 earns 165 points, No. 3 earns 155 points, and No. 4 earns 145 points. Points than decrease by five points for qualifying positions five through 16 (with No. 5 earning 140 points down to No. 16 earning 85 points). If you do not qualifying at an event, you do not earn Budweiser Shootout qualifying points at that event.
McClenathan, who is currently No. 8 in the eight-car field for the Shootout with 2660 points, is in a precarious position. Only the top seven point earners are guaranteed a spot in the Budweiser Shootout field. The eighth position will be determined by a lottery-style drawing from the eighth through 15th qualifiers. So as they say in Vegas: it’s a crap shoot.
“We’re just 15 points behind (David) Grubnic and Scott Kalitta. Our goal would be to gain enough points to go around them both and into sixth. That’s why every point is important during qualifying these next three races,” added McClenathan.
Anheuser-Busch provides an overall purse of $239,000 for the popular Budweiser Shootout program in 2005. The Shootout will feature a race-day purse of $147,000.
The Shootout winner walks away with $100,000 of Budweiser’s money. The runner-up will earn $15,000. The two semifinalists will earn $6,000 each and the four first-round finishers $5,000 apiece.
Budweiser also awards $92,000 in bonuses to No. 1 qualifiers throughout the Shootout series, with the low qualifier earning $4,000 at each national event leading up to the Shootout.
Concluded McClenathan, “We’re not going to let the Budweiser Shootout cause us to lose focus on the big picture and putting the Fram AirHog dragster in the winner’s circle this weekend. But because of the prestige and dollars available, the Budweiser Shootout is very important to Carrier Boyz Racing.”
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