Danny Rowe still in the mix after opening round in St. Louis
MADISON, IL – After the opening round of eliminations for the AAA Insurance NHRA Midwest Nationals at the newly reopened Gateway Motorsports Park outside St. Louis, Missouri, Danny Rowe and his Sterling Bridge Pro Mod team are proving that they’re not going down without a fight.
Yet again the NHRA Pro Mod series championship is coming down to the wire with a half-dozen drivers still mathematically in contention, including California’s own Danny Rowe. Rowe came into the St. Louis event needing to make a statement early. Despite the clear and present performance advantage being displayed by the field leading turbocharged cars, Rowe used an impressive 5.886-second, 247.25mph quarter-mile blast in his supercharged Camaro to stake his claim as the No. 4 qualifier.
“We were very excited to see St. Louis back on the schedule,” says Rowe, who has seen his fair share of success in the shadow of the Gateway Arch, including a pair of victories and a track record-setting performance in 2010. “Going into this weekend, the second to last race of the season, we knew we had to get after it. You don’t want to come out swinging wildly and risk not qualifying, but once we got the car solidly in the top-half of the field, we knew that we were going to have to get after it.
“Jimmy [Rector, crew chief] and this team have given me an awesome race car all year,” continues Rowe. “I’ve never had more faith in what we’re doing. Right now, we’re just fighting an uphill battle with how well all these other cars are running. We’re pulling out all the stops, though. We don’t have any other choice.”
Starting from the No. 4 spot, Rowe faced No. 13 qualifier, Kenny Lang, who he has faced three times in prior events, two of which he has won. Off the starting line, Lang took the holeshot, but it wasn’t enough to keep the distance on Danny Rowe’s hard-charging Camaro. At the stripe it was Rowe taking the win by some 14-feet with a 5.921-second, 245.49mph pass over Lang’s 6.039/243.11 combination.
“Tomorrow is going to be a big day for us,” says Rowe, who will face series points leader Mike Castellana in the quarterfinals. “It’ll be a classic blower versus nitrous race with serious implications points-wise. It’s going to be a good show for all these Midwest race fans, so we’re excited.”
The second round of Pro Mod eliminations for the AAA Insurance NHRA Midwest Nationals outside St. Louis, Missouri, are scheduled to begin at 12:30 PM tomorrow, Sunday, September 30th.