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2013 NHRA: Shane Gray Hopes To Turn The Tables In Round One In Gainesville
Posted by: newsla on Mar 17, 2013 - 06:18 PM
2013 NHRA: Shane Gray Hopes To Turn The Tables In Round One In Gainesville

As qualifying for the 44th annual Amalie Oil NHRA Gatornationals gathered steam, NHRA Pro Stock driver Shane Gray and his Gray Motorsports crew experienced a variety of emotions. Ultimately, the Denver, N.C.-based group earned a start from the No. 10 position in a quick field at a racetrack that historically has provided conditions conducive to very speedy runs.


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The racing surface and air conditions at Auto-Club Raceway at Gainesville did not disappoint, and true to history, the national record for e.t. was reset on the opening day of qualifying (Mike Edwards, 6.473). Gray put a solid number on the board in the first session as well, a 6.518 at 211.33 mph, stumbled a bit in round two, and regained his footing in the third qualifier with a 6.551 at nearly 212 mph. The fourth session was the warmest of all, and Gray was among those unable to travel smoothly down the quarter-mile dragstrip.

"We always have high expectations that are in place before we even get to the racetrack, because this Gray Motorsports team is very capable," said Gray. "We want to be a car that starts from the top half of the field on a regular basis, and we will be there, but right now we are glad to qualify and race on Sunday while we keep picking away at our program."

Gray will meet Erica Enders-Stevens in the first round of eliminations on Sunday, a driver he squared off with in round one in Phoenix just a couple of weeks ago. Gray, who also was starting from the No. 10 spot at the Arizona Nationals, was unable to capture the win light in Phoenix. This weekend, he is hoping to turn the tables for a much more favorable outcome.

"At this point, we don't look at it like 'We need to go out there and beat this driver who got the better of us,' we just look at it like we need to work hard tonight and come to the table tomorrow with a real good plan and the best racecar we can possibly have," said Gray. "Our fate is in our hands."

Shane Gray, Gray Motorsports Chevy Camaro
Qualifying position: No. 10 

First-round opponent: Erica Enders-Stevens
Session 1: 6.518 sec., 211.33 mph 

Session 2: 11.428, 77.27 

Session 3: 6.551, 211.93 

Session 4: 11.547, 76.43

Sunday: 11 a.m., championship eliminations

NHRA ON ESPN2 (All times EDT)
Sunday: 1:30 a.m., 8 a.m. (re-air) qualifying; 7 p.m. eliminations

Sunday: High 80; 0 percent chance of rain

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