When the time comes for each racer to "put 'em away" for the season, it's a little less bitter when you can do so after making a final during your last outing for the year. Janice Swan, of Mooresville, Indiana was able to do just that during her final outing of the season when she put her 2007 Rooman dragster into the Super Comp final for the NHRA Div 3 Fall Classic National Open at Lucas Oil Raceway outside of Indianapolis, Indiana.
Janice Swan's 2007 Super Comp Rooman dragster
Janice Swan made it to the Super Comp final for the NHRA Div 3 Fall Classic National Open at Lucas Oil Raceway.
While the National Open does not provide competitors the opportunity to earn any form of championship points, it does give drivers in the NHRA Division 3 area a final chance to earn a precious national event grade point all while having some late season fun.
Swan noted that during the first part of the two-day race, there was quite a lot of wind to deal with. "It was a crosswind, so it was quite hairy on the top end," she explained. "You just had to be ready for it. Down track it moved you to the wall, if you were in the right lane especially. So it was really hectic. It got your attention, that's for sure."
Time runs for the classes were held on Saturday and Swan was pleased with her passes. "Everything went really smooth and actually, I was driving my dad's Opel in Super Gas as well," she pointed out. "He had injured his back, so I was driving his car, too. We were really more focused on the Opel and the motor broke in the first time trial. It was my first time ever stepping into a door car, so I had been so looking forward to it that when it broke, I was really bummed. It was really supposed to be dad running my dragster and me his car, just so we could have a change of pace. Since it was a non-points race, we would switch cars."
"The dragster, well it was of course the most comfortable of the two to drive," she added. "It just finally clicked that weekend. We really had a rough season this year. Either I wasn't on my game or the car had a glitch and couldn't get past second round. I was just really frustrated. So to come out and have good time trials and all the round wins was just a great way to end the season."
Come eliminations, Swan faced Chuck Ridenhour in round one. "The first round is always the most nerve-wracking, because you don't know what the track [conditions] is and it's really a guessing game. My husband and crew chief, who does such a wonderful job of setting me up. I always know I'm close to the number that we are looking for. I had Ridenhour, who is a good bracket racer. I'm always a little intimidated sometimes by bracket racers, because they are able to be out there racing a little more than I am, since I travel with my job. I felt good that I was able to drive the top end well that round with my 8.890 to his 8.886."
Swan again outdrove her competition in round two, on both ends of the track, and used her better reaction time to push Dennis Brown full hundredth under the index for an 8.911 to 8.890 victory.
"Third round sticks out for me in my mind, too," she confessed. "Chad Lamont bracket races and runs the Mid-West Super Comp Series, so going into that round I felt like they may be a little more on their game this season than I had been. I was able to cut a better light than he did and catch him rather quickly, since I had a little higher mile-an-hour car and just ride along with him to take the stripe on that round win, as well."
In her quest for the final round, Swan went on to beat Tony Quinn in round four, which earned her an ever-so-important semi-final bye. "I hadn't been in the right lane all day, so I thought it was a good idea to take that lane for my bye," she pointed out.
Swan would meet up with Danny Tool in the Super Comp final and was feeling very good about her chances at taking it all. "We flipped for lane choice and I ended up getting the right lane that I had just run for the bye. I had been good on the tree with my twelve and fifteen lights," she said thinking back to just before the final. "So I was feeling pretty safe. There was an alcohol car testing in my lane just before me and I thought for a moment, maybe I will grip better [off the line], maybe I should add a little more [delay] and then, no-no, I'm safe."
Her car was dialed very close, running an 8.906, but for Swan it was over in less than a blink of the eye by a mere two-thousandths of a second, the amount of time she fouled on the tree.
"It really was a good weekend and it's great to be able to put the car away on a good note like that," she said of her final. "You know you have that little extra momentum for next season. The winter will go a lot easier than if I had gone out first round."
Swan continues to be a huge fan of all the K&N products that she uses not only on her race car, but also the GMC diesel dually that transports them to and from the events. "We use K&N products on everything we have," she said. "I also have the K&N first generation composite scoop on my dragster that has its own K&N filter and tray. We have been using K&N for a very long time and they are such great people to work with, too."
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