DALLAS, Tex. (October 13, 2017) The Countdown to the championship is now past the halfway point. The AAA Fall Nationals at Texas Motorplex is the fourth of six races in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing series playoffs. It was a hot and humid day at the track that saw many big names and championship contenders fail to make a solid pass but also saw track records challenged.
Steve Torrence, Top Fuel’s most recent winner, nabbed the provisional pole in Q2 this evening with a 3.682 second pass at 327.51 mph. Torrence also tied the track E.T. record. “Going into tomorrow and Sunday, confidence is for sure at an all-time high,” said Torrence. This is Torrence’s home track but he has yet to hoist a Wally at Texas Motorplex. “It’s been elusive. This year or any year in the past or any year in the future it’s always good to win at your home track. You’d like to win here probably more than anywhere. We just haven’t been able to do it.”
Tony Schumacher was just one-hundredth behind Torrence during their side-by-side Q2 run. Schumacher’s 3.692 second effort at 327.66 mph has him off-pole going into the final two qualifying sessions tomorrow. Schumacher’s teammate, Antron Brown is third with his 3.696 second lap at 329.91 mph which was also made in Q2. Doug Kalitta, Brittany Force, Shawn Langdon, Richie Crampton, and Leah Pritchett help make up the quick eight provisional qualifiers.
Defending Funny Car champion and winner of the last two national events, Ron Capps, is sitting pretty in the top spot with his Q2 lap of 3.872 seconds at 329.58 mph. Capps told the media center, “I’m ecstatic. You don’t want to seem overjoyed by something so small but those three points could be very important coming down to Pomona.”
Capps’ teammate, “Fast” Jack Beckman is hot on his heels with a 3.873 second elapsed time at 332.34 mph. Privateer, Jonnie Lindberg ran the same elapsed time as Beckman but had a slightly slower speed of 328.14 mph. Tim Wilkerson, Courtney Force, Tommy Johnson Jr., Bob Tasca III, and Alexis Dejoria are also qualified on the top side of the ladder. Noticeably missing from some of the top spots are John Force, Matt Hagan, Robert Hight, and J.R. Todd who will look to turn their luck around tomorrow.
KB Racing has the top two spots locked down for the time being. Bo Butner leads the class with his 6.588 second run at 208.94 seconds from the second qualifying session. “We have to get through tomorrow and try to make two good runs tomorrow, that’s our main goal. It’s almost like showing up to a new track on Sunday if the weather forecast is correct. We’ll see what happens when that happens on Sunday. Tomorrow’s gonna be close and similar so we want to learn and get better, Butner explained. For those of you unaware, scattered rain showers and low temperatures in the seventies are expected to grace the track on Sunday.
His teammate, Greg Anderson is second with a 6.626 second at 207.27 mph run. In the third spot is Erica Enders with her 6.634 second pass at 208.49 mph. This is Enders’ highest provisional qualifying effort of the season. Brian Self, Drew Skillman, Jeg Coughlin, Tanner Gray, and Alex Laughlin help round out the top eight qualifiers.
Pro Stock Motorcycle
Eddie Krawiec is trying to add as many qualifying bonus points to his lead that he possibly can. Only 16 points in front of LE Tonglet, Krawiec went to the No. 1 spot with his 6.860 second run at 196.53 mph in Q2. “I made a really clean, very solid run off the truck. Andrew and Matt [Hines] had the tuneup really right on and the chassis setup was right. Second session we had a bit of a crosswind. I don’t know, you guys are in the tower, you don’t really notice that as much. Us being on two wheels makes it a little difficult to navigate through it,” Krawiec said. Prior to running in Q2 he made a slight chassis adjustment but said it wasn’t enough for him to be satisfied with the run.
Reigning world champion, Jerry Savoie is qualified second with his 6.873 second pass at 194.35 mph from the opening qualifying session. Scotty Pollacheck is third with his 6.879 second effort at 195.53 mph from the second session. Hector Arana Jr., Andrew Hines, LE Tonglet, Karen Stoffer, and Matt Smith are also part of the top eight qualifiers with two session left on Saturday.