weeks of warm weather in SoCal the NHRA POWERade
show came to the Pomona Fairplex in between
rainstorms for the 45th Annual K&N Filters Winternationals.
The line going around goes something like, "If
your city is having a drought, hold an NHRA
POWERade Drag Race!"
What started out as a clear
morning progressively got darker and cloudier
over Thursday and when the Pros took to Parker
Avenue for their first qualifying session of
the new season there was no longer a blue sky.
Sportsman racers consumed
the morning and early afternoon, but first up
was the Pro Stock qualifying session, the first
competition test of the new beadlock wheel and
tire combination under the mandated NHRA Rule.
Defending POWERade Pro Stock Champion Greg
Anderson continued where he left off last fall
here at the Pomona Finals when he led qualifying
and took home the Wally.
Vegas General Construction Pontiac Grand Am
grabbed this year's Winternationals first round
#1 with a 6.743/205.19 mph. Anderson quipped,
"I still feel really good, it's almost like
we never left here."
He added, "I'm still not a big proponent of
the beadlock wheels, because I just don't like
to see this class slow down, I don't think it's
good for the class, but I think we need the
cars to be faster."
Anderson's team got the stiffer wheel and tires combo after the Finals and tested heavily in Florida in the off-season. When asked if there had been a problem with last season's wheels that needed to be changed, Anderson answered, "I've never, ever seen a failure. Does that mean you have to wait till you see a failure? No. Do we have a problem now? No."
This weekend finds three-time Pro Stock champion Darrell Alderman out of competition due to an off-season, work-related injury.