POMONA, Calif. — Persistent rain showers and an unfavorable weather forecast for the remainder of the weekend in Southern California forced NHRA officials to postpone the K&N Filters Winternationals Saturday at Pomona Raceway.

The $2 million race, the first of 23 events in the $50 million NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series for 2004, has been rescheduled for next weekend, Feb. 27-29.

“We pulled the plug for the balance of the weekend,” said Graham Light, NHRA senior vice president of racing operations. “Every weather service shows rain for tomorrow or we would’ve waited as long as possible. Since this is the first event of the season I didn’t want to start it out that way. It feels like a continuation of ’03. It’s very disappointing. It is very expensive for the teams and an inconvenience for the fans.”

Qualifying will resume on Feb. 27 with one professional session at 2:30 p.m. (PT). Two pro qualifying sessions are scheduled for Feb. 28 at 11 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Final eliminations are set for 11 a.m. on Feb. 29. All qualifying times recorded during Thursday’s session will carry over to next weekend.

Saturday’s NHRA coverage on ESPN2 was canceled. Sunday’s race coverage on ESPN2 will be replaced by a replay of the 2003 K&N Filters Winternationals. NHRA 2Day will air tomorrow at 11:30 a.m. (ET), also on ESPN2.

Next weekend’s television schedule includes two hours of qualifying coverage on ESPN2 from 4:30-6:30 p.m. (ET) on Feb. 28 and eliminations coverage on Feb. 29 from 10 p.m.-midnight (ET), also on ESPN2. NHRA 2Day will air on Feb. 29 from 3:30-4 p.m. (ET) on ESPN2.

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