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Keeping Pace

Anderson turns investigator to prepare for NHRA Joliet event

Greg Anderson and his Summit Racing team have labored to find and fix the gremlins that have been haunting their race cars of late. If the challenges of restoring his race car to full health and dealing with another tightly-packed Pro Stock field were not enough, this weekend Anderson will also have to deal with a track that has been his personal nemesis.


Courtesy: NHRA Media Relations

Chicago, Illinois-One of the more popular genres of television shows in recent years has been that of crime scene investigation. Almost daily, we are entertained by scenes of fictitious law enforcement personnel in cities across the country using cutting edge technology to solve seemingly perfect crimes. Over the last week, a similar scenario has unfolded at the KB Racing shops in Mooresville, NC, as Greg Anderson and his Summit Racing team have labored to find and fix the gremlins that have been haunting their race cars of late. Just as with their TV counterparts, it is a comprehensive effort that the crew hopes will bring a swift resolution, with this weekend’s United Association Route 66 Nationals in Joliet, IL just a few days away.

“Since the last race we have been exploring every option trying to get our race cars back up to speed,” detailed Anderson. “We spent a day testing in Bristol, where our Summit Racing Pontiacs seemed to run a little closer to normal, and then went back to the shop where we’ve used everything at our disposal to go over our program from bumper to bumper.

“We’ve replaced components, burned up the dyno and analyzed our notes for the last few years. Basically, we have looked at every little detail just to make sure there were no obvious errors, because we want everything to be at 100% when we get to Chicago. It’s been a tremendous effort by everyone on the crew, and although I’m not going to make any guarantees, I think we’ll be fine.”

If the challenges of restoring his race car to full health and dealing with another tightly-packed Pro Stock field were not enough, this weekend Anderson will also have to deal with a track that has been his personal nemesis. In his previous 15 appearances, the three-time champion has done almost everything at Route 66 Raceway, from ending up on his roof in 2002 to being the #1 qualifier and advancing to the final round on numerous occasions. However, he has yet to end the day in the Joliet winner’s circle, one of only two tracks on the Full Throttle circuit where he has yet to win. Although he can find no reason for this competitive anomaly, much like his current issues with his race car, it is a blemish he would like to eradicate this weekend.

“For whatever reason, throughout my career Route 66 Raceway has been my Achilles’ heel,” said Anderson. “There’s nothing wrong with the racetrack – it’s a beautiful facility with a good surface, and weather is rarely an issue. It’s just that, no matter how well we are running, something goofy always seems to happen and I get tripped up in Chicago. I’ve come close, but I’ve yet to leave with the Wally.

“Fortunately, it is not a team issue, as Jason (teammate Line) has won there three times in his Summit Racing Pontiac, so we certainly know we’re capable. Who knows, maybe this year all the bad karma I’ve had in the past in Joliet will be replaced with good fortune. After all, we’re looking to turn things around in a big way, and there would be no place more appropriate for me to do that than Route 66.”


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Motorsports correspondent Doug Pace keeps up with motorsports news and notes from around the region.

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