KENT, Wash. (Aug. 4) — Top Fuel driver Scott Palmer has been sweating the details in advance of this weekend’s 31st annual CatSpot Organic Cat Litter NHRA Northwest Nationals, which is sponsored by the same company that backs his racing operation. But through qualifying, Palmer has determined he had nothing to worry about as fans in the Pacific Northwest have enthusiastically embraced CatSpot and his team.
“The response has been crazy,” Palmer said. “I’ve never met so many cat owners. These are cat people up here. The crowd has been insane. It’s huge and to be honest I’m actually shocked to see this many people at this track. It’s fully packed.
“The response for CatSpot sponsoring the race has been over the top. I mean we just had some Seattle Mariner players come by for a visit. One of the players has a cat and he talked to me about CatSpot and now that he’s heard about it he’s going to switch over because he wants to do the right thing for his cat. It’s pretty wild the people we’ve reached through this race sponsorship.”
Palmer has been doing well on the track also. His best pass of 3.815 seconds at 323.81 mph placed him comfortably in the field.
“So far, it’s been good all the way around,” Palmer said. “We came out of the box with the 3.81, which is a very acceptable run. We shook the tires in Q2 when everyone had their best passes so we missed our opportunity to move up the ladder a little bit but today we are doing the same thing we did last week because it paid off. We are straight-up testing for tomorrow because these are definitely race-day conditions.
“We spent today trying to see how much the track will take. In Q3 it smoked the tires about 330 feet out so we wanted to get through that section in Q4 and just learn how to go faster tomorrow in the heat. We accomplished that goal as well so we are set to race.”
Round 1 is a doozy as Palmer will square off against Mike Salinas, who is one spot back in the points. Salinas ran a best of 3.768 at 326.71 mph.
This race will be broadcast on the main FOX network.
Just down pit row, Rickey House has his CatSpot Organic Cat Litter Top Fuel Harley are ready for action after a best pass of 6.306 at 216.41 mph. He’ll start eliminations with lane choice over Randal Andras, who went 6.329 at 221.05 mph.
“The bike has been doing what I’m telling it to do and every change I’m making is working so I’m pretty happy,” House said. “I want more, of course, and I have some things to work on, but this is a CatSpot event and I have to be smart to go rounds and get in position to win.
“I was happy to move up in the final qualifying sessions and we’ll try to make a few more small steps to improve. All the other guys will be trying to go faster so if I can just stay in the mode I’m in we could have a great day tomorrow.”