Close One for Jeff Arend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway

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Funny car driver Jeff Arend had one great qualifying session followed by a stout evening round at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in Nevada. Arend was one of the few who managed a solid lap in session one, putting a 4.915 on the board at the Nationals.

Jeff Arend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway
Jeff Arend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway

Another close one for Jeff Arend
Another close one for Jeff Arend
After landing 4th in the first session, he missed putting a stout number on the night run and his placement dropped to 15th place. “Everyone else did it just the other way, barely getting anywhere on the first run but then putting big results on the board Friday night,” said Arend. “We felt really good about our first pass, but we had some issues with some things inside the car and we slipped down near the bottom. There was no doubt we’d have to improve to make the show.”
Team Worsham uses K&N ProductsTeam Worhsam uses K&N Products
Jeff Arend's qualifying run at The Strip
Jeff Arend's qualifying run at The Strip

On Saturday, Arend was part of a large group of drivers who could not negotiate the full length of the track during the first session. Stars like John Force, Tony Pedregon, Jack Beckman, Tim Wilkerson, Gary Densham and Jim Head were all in danger of not making the field.

At the line and 4.818 seconds later, Arend was back in the fray. Pedregon and Densham made it to the top half of the field. Wilkerson was bumped out and John Force made it to the 16th spot. Force knew his amazing streak of 395 races and 20 years was on the line. Beckman outran Force’s time and left the 14-time champion on the sidelines for the first time in nearly 20 years. Jeff Arend finished in 13th position.

Arend was set in a match against POWERade points lead champion Ron Capps, the No. 4 qualifier in Sunday’s race.

“There is a lot to be said for the theory that you often win or lose your first round race when you’re qualifying,” said Arend. “But, we’ve seen enough huge upsets on race day to know that’s not always the case. No. 16 qualifiers beat the No. 1 guy all the time, so all we concentrated on doing was making sure the car made a full lap under power. We wanted to give ourselves a chance to win, and if things lined up just right, we could even outrun them.”

Arend saw his teammate, Del Worsham, run 4.842 to take out Gary Densham by the slimmest of margins. He knew his Team CSK car would run something close to that number.

Arend left the starting line first, and the race was on in a side-by-side battle of two fast race cars. At the stripe Capps won by 11-thousandths of a second. “I’m beginning to understand how Del felt last year, because this is two races in a row where we really ran well,” said Arend. “We’re feeling good, we have two solid race cars now, and I don’t think it’s a surprise to anyone when either of our cars win rounds or qualify well. We are in the hunt for the top eight.”

Worsham Racing uses K&N Engineering products on its Funny Cars. “The thick canister walls on the K&N Oil Filters have extra strength and durability,” said Team Manager Bob Wilber. “It reduces the risk of damage from debris on the track. K&N is never a factor we have to worry about when we race.

Follow Jeff Arend's progress throughout the racing season at the K&N news site. Find K&N products for your vehicle using the K&N application search then use the K&N dealer search to find a K&N dealer in your part of the world.

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K&N Engineering, Inc., with headquarters in Riverside, California, has been the world's leader in performance filter technology since 1969, serving the needs of the automotive, motorcycle, marine, industrial and military markets. K&N is heavily involved in nearly every form of motorsports from off-road and powersports to drag racing, stock cars and road racing. For more information about K&N Filters, please contact K&N Engineering, Inc., P.O. Box 1329, Riverside, CA 92502-1329, (800) 213-4182 for a dealer near you, (800) 858-3333 for technical service/questions, (951) 826-4001 Fax, e-mail, or visit