EPPING, N.H. (July 7) — Things are going extremely well for CatSpot Organic Cat Litter-sponsored racers Dom Lagana, Scott Palmer and Rickey House at this weekend’s sixth annual NHRA New England Nationals as all three men finished qualifying in the top half of their respective classes.
Lagana and Palmer are slotted sixth and seventh in Top Fuel after some impressive runs in the second time-trial, which was held Friday evening when conditions were the best of the first two days of the sellout event.
Although they run an identical setup, Lagana ran slightly quicker, posting a 3.781-second pass at 326.16 mph on the scoreboard.
“We’ve got so much history out here at this track and Tommy Thompson and CatSpot are keeping us going,” Lagana said. “We’ve been struggling with this car a little bit but we’ve got this thing tuned up now. We made it down in both quick and warm conditions and the car is responding well to the changes that we make.
“The lanes have been pretty even throughout qualifying but it’s always nice to have the option of lane choice on race day. It looks like tomorrow will be the warmest day, so we could be facing some tricky conditions if we make it through to later rounds.”
Once racing begins Sunday, Lagana will enjoy lane choice over Shawn Reed, who qualified 11th with a 3.895 at 320.81 mph. Like Lagana, Reed runs a part-time schedule of NHRA races but is always consistent when he does race.
Palmer ended qualifying just one rung below his teammate with a best of 3.803 at 323.58 mph. He’ll face Richie Crampton in the opening session of eliminations. Crampton has struggled this weekend but did manage a 10th-best 3.884 at 316.97 mph.
“It’s great to have both CatSpot dragsters in the top half of the field,” Palmer said. “We ran ok so far but I know there is more in our car. We will spend the evening looking over the data from all eight qualifying runs and try to put a winning combination together for Richie.
“Big shout out to the fans here. They told us today was a sellout and that’s just awesome. People are here having a good time and we’re doing our best to give them a show.”
Astride the CatSpot Organic Cat Litter Top Fuel Harley-Davidson, House returned to his usual spot among the frontrunners in the class with a 6.362-second pass at 218.51 mph. That places him fourth in an eight-bike field and sets up a Round 1 date with Beau Layne, who qualified fifth with a 6.393 at 220.66 mph.
“I feel pretty good going into tomorrow. I learned a lot today,” House said. “I tried something different at Bristol and obviously it didn’t work so I went back to what we know and it’s working for us.
“Today, I tried something in Q4 and it didn’t work out but you’ve got to try it. So we’ll back up a little bit, get ready for tomorrow and see what happens.”