Anderson Powers to Runner-Up Finish in Topeka
Event: 24th annual Dollar General NHRA Summernationals
Location: Heartland Park Topeka, Topeka, Kansas
Day/Date: Sunday, May 20, 2012
Greg Anderson and the Summit Racing team continued their strong 2012 campaign on Sunday, scoring a runner-up finish at the Dollar General NHRA Summernationals in Topeka, Kan. Starting from the second position, he defeated Richard Freeman, Vincent Nobile and teammate Jason Line in the early rounds before squaring off against veteran Allen Johnson in the final round.
Although he was able to gain the advantage at the start with a near-perfect .004 reaction time, Anderson’s hopes for a fifth Topeka win were quickly shattered by severe tire shake, which found him fighting to maintain control of his race car, with the resulting 6.696-second, 210.21 mph run allowing his opponent to use a 6.587-second, 210.54 mph pass to get around him for the win.
“My Summit Racing Pontiac made seven of the best runs it’s made this season, but we needed eight,” said Anderson. “From the moment we rolled it off the trailer, it ran great, and we never lost the tune-up, giving me the best hot rod I’ve had all year. Unfortunately, we made a minor mistake in the final round, missing on the starting line and it shook the tires almost immediately. Naturally, we’re kicking ourselves for giving one away like that, but it was still a great weekend, and we’re very proud of everything that happened. We just picked the wrong time to make a bad run.”
As they plan to switch to a new Chevrolet Camaro for the next NHRA national event in Englishtown, Anderson and the KB Racing crew had hoped to give their venerable Pontiac GXP a proper sendoff at Heartland Park Topeka. After being among the best of the “factory hot rods” in qualifying, Anderson was equally strong on race day, using the second-quickest elapsed time of the opening round at 6.568-seconds to defeat Richard Freeman.
Although Vincent Nobile’s red-light start awarded him the automatic win in the second round, the four-time champion still reset the track top speed record with his 6.575-second, 211.30 mph pass. In what proved to be one of the closest races of the day, Anderson used a nearly identical 6.575-second, 210.93 mph run to edge his teammate Jason Line and advance to his sixth final round of the year, fifth at the Kansas quarter-mile and 109th of his Pro Stock career. Naturally disappointed to not be leaving the Sunflower State with the winner’s trophy, he nevertheless found plenty of reasons to smile heading forward, as the team embarks upon a new chapter in its storied history.
“Even though we didn’t win, we still had a lot of bright spots here in Topeka,” said Anderson. “This entire KB Racing team did a great job all weekend, with both Jason and I qualifying in the top three, getting both cars running well and making it to the semifinals today. In fact, up until the final, it was just about perfect, so we can’t leave here too unhappy. Besides, we’re heading back to North Carolina to work on our new cars.
“I am absolutely looking forward to getting our Summit Camaros on the racetrack. Although it would have been really cool to retire this Pontiac in the winner’s circle, whether we won today or not was not going to change our decision to switch to the Camaro. The good news is that this GXP went out in style and now it’s time to move on to the next chapter, which we are all really excited about. I can’t wait to get back home so we can start testing the new car, getting ready to roll her into the staging lanes in Englishtown.”