Four Rounds, Four Strong Runs of Qualifying for Zizzo at zMAX
Topics: TJ Zizzo, O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Nationals
Owner: Tony Zizzo
Crew Chief: Mike Kern
Clutch Specialist: Tony Smith
Utilities/Tires: Mike Adams
Public Relations: Cathie Gallo
Cylinder Heads: Rick Dale
Car Chief: Rick Messmore
Bottom End/Motor Assembly: Ryan Ramos
Clutch/Car Assembly: Chris Schneider
Cylinder Head (right): Joe Cluts
Utility: Matt Blager
Utility: Doug Wikell
Public/Media Relations: Brandon W. Mudd
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Brandon W. Mudd
CONCORD, N.C. – Ideal weather conditions for fast racecars continued Saturday at zMAX Dragway for the second and final day of NHRA Full Throttle Series qualifying. TJ Zizzo raced his PEAK Motor Oil/Herculiner Top Fuel dragster to twin 3.900 second passes, completing a weekend of solid runs for the Chicago-based team. Zizzo qualified 12th for Sunday’s O’Reilly NHRA Nationals eliminations on the strength of a 3.860 second pass at a personal record 316.23 mph on Friday.
The team is building off a strong showing at the U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis two weeks ago when they were only .02 seconds shy of beating one of the top racers in the sport, Brandon Bernstein. Four fast passes at “The Bellagio of Drag Strips” has given the team more confidence in their rail and in racing, confidence equals momentum.
“I’m very excited,” Zizzo said after the final round of qualifying. “The car is very consistent and that’s a good feeling. Now that we’ve run two races in a row, we’re going to let this thing roll.”
With great speed comes expense and this weekend, that expense was in the form of Goodyear tires. Team owner Tony Zizzo said the team has gone through their share of slicks due to the cold track conditions. “We’ve spent more money on tires this weekend than we’ve spent all season,” The elder Zizzo said. “One pair of tires per round and we’re running out.”
Overall, the trip to the Southeast has been full of positives for the PEAK Motor Oil/Herculiner team and Zizzo is ready to run for the money on Sunday.
“Needless to say, a 3.89, a 3.86, a 3.90, and a 3.90, that’s fantastic,” he said. “It’s a great start to the weekend and it’s great to be racing week in and week out right now and we’re looking forward to tomorrow. The car has been consistent and that will scare the guy next to us.”
The guy next to them is U.S. Nationals winner Antron Brown, who barely edged Zizzo for the round win last October at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway thanks to a holeshot. Brown qualified fourth with a 3.802 second pass. His Don Schumacher Racing teammates Tony Schumacher and Spencer Massey both ran identical 3.771 ETs in the final round of qualifying, but “The Sarge” was faster and earned top qualifier honors going into Sunday.
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Fans of TJ Zizzo and Zizzo Racing can find updates and photos of the PEAK Motor Oil/Herculiner Top Fuel team by checking out ZizzoRacing.com, Twitter.com/ZizzoRacing, and Facebook.com/ZizzoRacing. Videos of TJ and Zizzo Racing can be found at YouTube.com/TJZizzo.
Zizzo is racing his PEAK Motor Oil/Herculiner Top Fuel dragster this weekend at zMAX Dragway in the 4th Annual O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Nationals. Eliminations are expected to begin Sunday at Noon EDT with pre-race ceremonies scheduled for 11 a.m. Spectator gates open at 9:30 a.m. For more information on this weekend’s event or for tickets, click HERE.
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