NHRA: Schumacher sets Bristol track record in Top Fuel

0 Comments

Eight-time Top Fuel world champ Tony Schumacher powered to a Bristol (Tenn.) Dragway track record Friday to highlight the first of two days of qualifying for the NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals.

Schumacher covered the track in 3.768 seconds at 323.58 mph to earn the provisional No. 1 qualifying spot, while Tim Wilkerson was the early front-runner in Funny Car, as was Chris McGaha in Pro Stock.

“We talk about what needs to happen each run,” Schumacher said in a NHRA media release. “[Crew chiefs] Mike [Green] and Neal [Strausbaugh] gave me a really good car. I just go out there and use it properly.”

Schumacher is coming off a No. 1 starting spot and victory last weekend at Epping, N.H.

Three-time Top Fuel world champion Larry Dixon (3.769 seconds at 326.24 mph) was second-quickest, followed by Spencer Massey (3.778 at 326.63).

Wilkerson took the lead in Funny Car with a run of 4.027 seconds at 318.32 mph.

“The thing is running way too easy,” Wilkerson said. “That’s a little concerning but as long as I keep that in my head and not try to be ‘Guerilla Tim, I’ll be OK.”

Del Worsham, a two-time Bristol winner, provisionally qualified No. 2 (4.034 seconds at 319.07 mph), while two-time and defending world champ Matt Hagan qualified third (4.035 at 318.09).

In Pro Stock, McGaha (6.647 seconds at 206.67 mph) took top honors heading into Saturday’s final two rounds of qualifying.

“I was expecting everyone to turn the wick up,” said McGaha, who was No. 1 qualifier last weekend in New Hampshire. “But they didn’t so here we are. We are trying not to jinx ourselves by being No. 1 but here we are.”

Defending world champ and defending event winner Erica Enders qualified No. 2 (6.655 at 206.10) while four-time world champ and three-time 2015 winner Greg Anderson qualified third (6.656 at 206.73).

The final two rounds of qualifying take place Saturday at 12:30 pm and 3 pm ET. Sunday’s final eliminations begin at Noon ET.

FRIDAY’S RESULTS:

Top Fuel: 1. Tony Schumacher, 3.768 seconds, 323.58 mph; 2. Larry Dixon, 3.769, 326.24; 3. Spencer Massey, 3.778, 326.63; 4. J.R. Todd, 3.790, 318.62; 5. Antron Brown, 3.805, 312.21; 6. Dave Connolly, 3.807, 314.02; 7. Clay Millican, 3.812, 318.17; 8. Richie Crampton, 3.845, 318.47; 9. Brittany Force, 3.856, 309.27; 10. Doug Kalitta, 3.856, 313.44; 11. Leah Pritchett, 3.861, 319.60; 12. Terry McMillen, 3.897, 315.86.  Not Qualified: 13. Pat Dakin, 3.958, 310.91; 14. Chris Karamesines, 4.037, 300.53; 15. Shawn Langdon, 4.097, 277.77; 16. Steve Torrence, 4.483, 173.16; 17. Troy Buff, 4.594, 173.05; 18. Cory McClenathan, 4.938, 149.58.

Funny Car: 1. Tim Wilkerson, Ford Mustang, 4.027, 318.32; 2. Del Worsham, Toyota Camry, 4.034, 319.07; 3. Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger, 4.035, 318.09; 4. Jack Beckman, Charger, 4.038, 313.80; 5. Ron Capps, Charger, 4.048, 317.49; 6. Robert Hight, Chevrolet Camaro, 4.053, 318.02; 7. Alexis DeJoria, Camry, 4.054, 311.20; 8. Courtney Force, Chevy Camaro, 4.072, 308.99; 9. Tommy Johnson Jr., Charger, 4.117, 303.16; 10. Chad Head, Camry, 4.121, 303.23; 11. Cruz Pedregon, Camry, 4.149, 289.51; 12. John Force, Camaro, 4.163, 310.27.  Not Qualified: 13. John Hale, 4.190, 294.31; 14. Paul Lee, 4.208, 273.83; 15. Tony Pedregon, 4.321, 226.35; 16. Jeff Diehl, 4.322, 263.77.

Pro Stock: 1. Chris McGaha, Chevy Camaro, 6.647, 206.67; 2. Erica Enders, Camaro, 6.655, 206.86; 3. Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.656, 206.83; 4. Allen Johnson, Dodge Dart, 6.658, 206.83; 5. Shane Gray, Camaro, 6.660, 206.86; 6. Drew Skillman, Camaro, 6.661, 206.45; 7. Vincent Nobile, Camaro, 6.662, 206.45; 8. Jonathan Gray, Camaro, 6.674, 205.85; 9. Rodger Brogdon, Camaro, 6.683, 206.99; 10. Richie Stevens, Dart, 6.685, 206.16; 11. Larry Morgan, Camaro, 6.686, 206.64; 12. Jason Line, Camaro, 6.689, 206.35.  Not Qualified: 13. Bo Butner, 6.694, 205.32; 14. Kenny Delco, 6.716, 204.17; 15. John Gaydosh Jr, 6.748, 203.52; 16. Dave River, 6.826, 202.06; 17. Alan Prusiensky, 6.828, 201.55; 18. V. Gaines, 7.938, 127.16.

Follow @JerryBonkowski