TEAM WILKERSON RACING
LEVI, RAY & SHOUP NHRA Nitro Funny Car
AAA of Texas Fall Nationals
Tim Wilkerson - No. 8 (3.968 seconds)
Lost to Alexis DeJoria in round one
WILK FRUSTRATED BY TIRE SMOKE IN DALLAS
Tim Wilkerson had a fine Friday at the Texas Motorplex. He posted a 4.058 in Q1 and then followed that up with a strong 3.968 under the lights in Q2. From there, things didn't exactly go swimmingly. Wilk smoked the tires very near the 660-foot timing block on both Saturday qualifying runs, and then had the same curse beset his Levi, Ray & Shoup Mustang in round one against Alexis DeJoria. The fact DeJoria cut a .005 light at the tree, which is realistically just a fortunate few thousandths short of a red light in Funny Car circles, only added to the frustration.
"I'd still be mad even if she had fouled, because we still made a lousy run," Wilk said. "We either have something wrong with the clutch or we've collectively lost our minds all at once, because it's really not like this car, or my team, or me, to do that three times in a row. I think actually I saw her out there and maybe drove it over out of the groove a half-tire or so, but that's not the real culprit. We have to fix the way we're applying the clutch.
"I can't control what goes on in the other lane, whether it's reaction times or elapsed times, so I don't worry about that. I worry that we should always be giving ourselves a chance to win, and in the Funny Car class right now you better get to the other end under power if you want to turn on any win-lights."
DeJoria posted a 4.007 elapsed time on the run, and considering there were seven runs in the threes (with one being Cruz Pedregon's 3.965 that actually lost to Ron Capps' 3.940) she was certainly beatable. There's just the pesky fact about getting to the finish line first, and preferably under power.
"All we were trying to do was make a nice easy trip down the track," Wilk said. "Same thing on Saturday. We weren't trying to be world-beaters or set any records, but the car just refused to cooperate. They'll be like that sometimes, and you can beat your brains in trying to figure it out and fix it.
"We only have two races left now, and I'd really prefer we get it fixed and finish the season strong. It's no fun having to wait two weeks to get back out there and do something better, but it's way worse to finish the season not running well and have to wait through the off-season to have another chance. We'll do everything we can to run better at Las Vegas and Pomona, and I think we'll do just that. We're smart guys, and we'll figure it out."
The NHRA Mello Yello tour now takes a one-week hiatus before heading to The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, for the NHRA Toyota Nationals on October 30 through November 1.
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NHRA Nitro Funny Car
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