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Jun 19, 2013 - 06:00 PM
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2013 NHRA: Gray Optimistic as NHRA Ventures to New England for Inaugural Event
Posted by: newsla on Jun 19, 2013 - 05:58 PM
2013 NHRA: Gray Optimistic as NHRA Ventures to New England for Inaugural Event

Pro Stock driver Shane Gray and his Gray Motorsports crew have resumed a position as a team contending for race wins this year, and Gray and his group are optimistic about their chances for success at a brand new racetrack on NHRA's Mello Yello Drag Racing Series tour. This weekend, as they roll through the gates at New England Dragway for the Inaugural NHRA New England Nationals, Gray will be aiming for his first win of the season in a typically methodical, steady approach.


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As always, Gray says that the first thing on the agenda is simply to qualify, and then they will take it one step at a time. But with three final rounds already on the scorecard and a move up last week to sixth in the series standings, there is an unmistakable air of excitement surrounding the fourth-year team.

The surging energy is enhanced by the fact that they are en route to a facility that is part of New England motorsports history – it's the only 1/4-mile dragstrip in the area – and is finally opening its doors to professional-level competition.

"I think we're all excited about getting up there and seeing how things shake out at New England Dragway," said Gray. "We've heard a lot about how good the crowd is going to be, and how excited they are to have us up there. I don't know who is looking forward to this more – us or them. But either way, it's just going to be a real good weekend. It's pretty special to be part of the group that gets to go there and race for the first time at a national event. It's a moment in history, and I'm proud to be part of it."

Gray, though humble, likes his chances as he makes his way north from his home base of Denver, N.C. While last season was a struggle from beginning to end, a revised methodology and partnership with Elite Performance to expand the Gray Motorsports in-house engine program has awakened confidence for the team and the second-generation drag racer.

"I've got a great car, and that is something I've been able to say consistently this year," said Gray, whose father, Johnny Gray, competes in the Pitch Energy Funny Car in the Mello Yello Series. "Now, to be able to take this car to a new racetrack on a level playing field with everyone else, well it's just kind of exciting. You just don't know what can happen, and my job this weekend will be to do the best I can behind the wheel of the Gray Motorsports Chevy Camaro and trust that my guys are going to continue to give me a great racecar."

Event Schedule (All Times Eastern):
Friday, June 21, 4:45 p.m., 6:45 p.m., qualifying
Saturday, June 22, 12:15 p.m., 2:15 p.m., qualifying
Sunday, June 23, 11 a.m., championship eliminations

Television Coverage (All coverage on ESPN2):
Saturday, June 22, 8-10 p.m. (ET, delayed), qualifying
Sunday, June 23, 7-10 p.m., (ET, delayed), eliminations

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