Pro Stock driver Greg Anderson, a four-time world champion and six-time winner of the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, is in a strange position this season: he has yet to get a win in 17 races, and has just one final round appearance. The competition has been fierce in Pro Stock this season, and Anderson realizes he’s playing catch-up.
“It seems like more and more competitors every year figure out the game,” said Anderson in a recent NHRA teleconference. “Really learn what it takes to run at the top level, so you get more and more of them every year. Also, the class in general, the whole class goes forward each year. I think I'm a pretty good example of that. Apparently, I haven't gone forward much this year and the rest of the class has. Just like that, you're left behind. So you can't sit on what you have regardless of what you have. You can be the man one day and be a complete also-ran the next day if you don't go forward from today to tomorrow. You have to look at every day going forward, no matter how fast you are. Looks like I kind of got left behind in the off season. Apparently, some other teams did a better job of making their race cars faster, and it has taken me, what are we, into August now, so it has taken me into August to catch up. So it's been a tough season for me, but that shows you how great Pro Stock is. If you sit still on what you have and think what you have is good enough for one day or one week, you're going to get left behind.”
Anderson admitted to being frustrated this season, but is making no excuses for the Summit Racing Team’s inability to win.
“My frustration level has been on red line all year, so has Jason (Line, teammate), so has our entire team,” said Anderson. “I can make up all the excuses I want. We've got the Countdown. It really doesn't matter until the Countdown. Baloney. I never bought into it. I don't believe that. I go to every race to win a race. I haven't been capable of winning a race all year. I haven't rolled in on Sunday morning with the feeling that I had a chance to win a race until the last race we had at Brainerd. That's been the first time all year. It's been a struggle. It's been a battle. And we have worked extremely hard this year, and we certainly do it at all time, but when you get your back to the wall like we've had this year, I can guarantee you every hour that you're not working on that race car in some way, you feel, well, if I don't work that next hour, I'll never catch these guys. I am behind. Reality is I got left in the dust this year somehow, some way, performance-wise, and I'm not prepared to win the race. I don't enjoy going to the racetrack not being able to win a race. So we work very hard.”
“The good thing about it is even though the frustration level for all of us has been at max level, there's been no in-fighting, no finger-pointing, there's been no it's his fault, it's this person's fault, the engine's fault, the car's fault, the driver's fault,” continued Anderson. “There's been none of that. We win as a team, and we lose as a team, and we've stuck together very well through all the adversity. That's what I think defines your team is if you can drive through those low times. And let me tell you, this has been a low time, and to come out of it with the same group of people, and everybody wants to race with each other and hang out together. So I think we're finally turning the corner.”
The Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals feature five qualifying sessions for the Mello Yello Series, the first one taking place Friday, August 30th at 5:30 p.m. ET. The second and third sessions take place Saturday, August 31st at 2:30 and 6 p.m. ET, with the final two qualifying sessions on Sunday, September 1st at 11 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. ET. Final eliminations take place Monday, September 2nd beginning at 11 a.m. ET. Keep up with all the action at www.nhra.com.
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