Connolly Eager for 2009 Pro Stock Debut
A reluctant spectator for three national events, Pro Stock driver Dave Connolly will make his debut in the 2009 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series today at Houston Raceway Park.
Lack of sponsorship has kept Connolly and his Cagnazzi Racing Charter Communications Chevrolet Cobalt on the sidelines this season. At Baytown, Connolly will be wheeling Kenny Koretsky’s Nitro Fish Dodge in the O’Reilly Spring Nationals in place of Dave Northrop. Business and family commitments have forced Northrop to miss this event, although he is scheduled to drive Koretsky’s Mopar for nine more events this season.
Connolly’s relief stint in Koretsky’s Dodge has been made with the approval of team owner Victor Cagnazzi and General Motors. “I’m glad we were able to get a high-caliber driver like Dave Connolly to fill in for Dave Northrop,” Koretsky said. “We want to give (crew chief) Eddie Guarnaccia all the tools he needs as we try to work out these Hemi motors.”
The winner of 21 NHRA races, Connolly is eager to return to the staging lanes, even for one race. “I’m still part of Cagnazzi Racing, and when Kenny offered this car for me to drive this weekend, I was excited,” Connolly said. “But I wanted the blessings of Victor, General Motors and (crew chief) Tommy Utt and they said ‘Yes.’ “The last time I sat in a Pro Stock seat was in Pomona (Calif.) last year in November and now, four months later, this is the first time I’m getting back in the seat. As a competitive as Pro Stock is, there’s definitely no room for error, especially in the driver’s seat.”
Connolly is no stranger to playing catch-up in a “Factory Hot Rod.” He missed the first five events of the 2008 season, but still managed to log four victories in eight final rounds. The Elyria, Ohio, native climbed to sixth place in points at the end of the 18-race regular season.No Comment