SEATTLE, post-race: Tony Bartone drove the Jim Dunn Racing/Got CMKX?/Lucas Oil Funny Car to a quarterfinal finish on Sunday at the 18th annual CARQUEST Auto Parts NHRA Nationals at Pacific Raceways.
Bartone entered Sunday's eliminations from the No. 12 qualifying position and faced Del Worsham in round one. The 49-year-old former NHRA Alcohol Funny Car champion left the starting line first with a .041 reaction time, the best light of the first round, and thundered into the quarterfinals with a 4.907 at 315.34 mph.
The Jim Dunn pit area was filled with CMKX shareholders as the team prepared for Bartone's second round race against Tommy Johnson Jr. Bartone shut off the car just after taking the green light and Johnson took the victory.
"To say I'm disappointed would be an extreme understatement," said Bartone after the run. "When I rolled into the staging beams I didn't put the fuel pump on the high side," explained Bartone. "When I hit the throttle I knew there was a problem and I immediately shut it off. We're still happy to have qualified strongly and win a round but we definitely left some cards on the table. We'll carry the momentum we've created here into Sonoma next weekend."