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Kalitta Rolls On In Top Fuel

| , RacinToday.com Saturday, July 5 2014


Top Fuel point-leader Doug Kalitta has advanced to the final round in six races this season, and his hot streak continued Friday as he raced to the provisional qualifying lead at the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals.

Del Worsham (Funny Car), Erica Enders-Stevens (Pro Stock) and Eddie Krawiec (Pro Stock Motorcycle) also were qualifying leaders at the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series event at Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio, near Cleveland.

Kalitta, who is seeking his first win at Norwalk, drove his Mac Tools dragster to a 1,000-foot performance of 3.771-seconds at 326.16 mph. If that elapsed time holds, it will be the 42nd pole of his career.

“(Saturday) will be a lot like today so it’ll be interesting to see if we can hold the lead,” Kalitta said. “I’m incredibly lucky to have this opportunity with what we have going on right now. I’m just trying to make the best of it. I’m looking forward to seeing what we can do.”

Steve Torrence is second after a run of 3.799-seconds at 324.67 mph in his Capco Contractors dragster and Kalitta teammate J.R. Todd is third at 3.807-seconds at 319.22 mph in his Optima Batteries dragster.

Funny Car veteran Worsham powered his DHL Toyota Camry to a track record 1,000-foot time of 4.000-seconds at 317.34 mph to lead that category.

“We were definitely trying to make a three-second run,” Worsham said. “We changed cars for the third time in three races so we’re pretty excited to make a good run. We’ll just have to play a little harder (Saturday).”

Tommy Johnson Jr. is second at 4.030-seconds at 319.67 mph in his Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger. John Force is third in his Castrol GTX High Mileage Ford Mustang at 4.034-seconds at 319.45 mph.

“My hot rod’s just going down the racetrack and being consistent as it ran a good number,” said Force, a 16-time world champion. “We were going to try and run a little quicker and after Jimmy (Prock, crew chief, Castrol EDGE Mustang) looked at our pass run on the computer, we could have run in the threes. There were some cars that ran four-flats right after us so we got bumped from first to third.”

Ohio native and crowd favorite Chad Head sits in fifth in his Head Racing Toyota Camry at 4.052-seconds at 318.02 mph.

In Pro Stock, Mello Yello Series point-leader Enders-Stevens powered her Elite Motorsports Chevy Camaro to 6.523-second pass at 212.63 mph, setting both ends of Norwalk’s quarter-mile record. If her time holds through Saturday’s two sessions, it will be the eighth pole of her career and second of the season.

“I’m really proud of my team,” Enders-Stevens said. “We’ve worked really hard. I couldn’t be more proud to throw out the numbers that we did today. We were hoping for better numbers this evening but that starting line is a little challenging. I feel confident this weekend.”

Shane Gray is second at 6.527-seconds at 211.69 mph in his Gray Manufacturing Chevy Camaro followed by Allen Johnson, who posted a 6.532-second pass at 211.89 mph in his Mopar/Magneti Marelli Dodge Dart.

Ohio native and five-time/reigning world champion Jeg Coughlin Jr. held the sixth spot at 6.554-seconds at 212.03 mph in his JEGS.com/Mopar Dart. Coughlin, who has won national events at 24 different NHRA facilities and is the all-time leader in that unique category, is seeking his first victory at Norwalk.

Meanwhile, the Summit Racing Equipment team of former world champions Jason Line and Greg Anderson hold the eighth and 11th spots, respectively, in their Camaros.

In Pro Stock Motorcycle, Krawiec powered his Screamin’ Eagle Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson V-Rod to the qualifying lead with a quarter-mile performance of 6.844-second at 195.05 mph, setting a track record for elapsed time.

“To come here and have low ET and a great motorcycle under me _ I couldn’t ask for any more,” said Krawiec, a three-time world champion. “You never really know what’s going to happen. I’m definitely looking forward to it.”

Jerry Savoie is second aboard his Savoie’s Alligator Farm Buell with a 6.865-second pass at 195.48 mph. John Hall powered his Matt Smith Racing Buell to the third spot with a 6.882-second pass at 194.38 mph. Series point-leader and Harley-Davidson rider Andrew Hines, a three-time world champion, sits fourth with a 6.913-secondpass at 192.33 mph.

The final two qualifying sessions are scheduled for Saturday at 4:45 p.m. (EDT) and 7:15 p.m. Sunday’s eliminations are set for 11 a.m. ESPN2 will air a two-hour qualifying package Saturday at 11 p.m. The network also will carry three hours of final eliminations coverage Sunday at 9 p.m.

Friday’s qualifying results after the first two of four rounds of time trials for the eighth annual Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals at Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park, 13th of 24 events in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series. Qualifying will continue Saturday for Sunday’s final eliminations.

Top Fuel _ 1. Doug Kalitta, 3.771-seconds, 326.48 mph; 2. Steve Torrence, 3.799, 324.67; 3. J.R. Todd, 3.807, 319.22; 4. Shawn Langdon, 3.809, 322.88; 5. Spencer Massey, 3.813, 321.81; 6. Tony Schumacher, 3.839, 322.65; 7. Antron Brown, 3.840, 311.56; 8. Larry Dixon, 3.844, 321.88; 9. Khalid alBalooshi, 3.845, 316.82; 10. Bob Vandergriff Jr., 3.849, 320.43; 11. Brittany Force, 3.860, 322.04; 12. Troy Buff, 3.873, 307.72.

Not Qualified _ 13. Leah Pritchett, 3.888, 309.42; 14. Pat Dakin, 3.924, 308.00; 15. Richie Crampton, 3.929, 269.73; 16. Clay Millican, 3.953, 315.42; 17. Cory McClenathan, 4.164, 213.81; 18. Chris Karamesines, 4.183, 230.02; 19. Terry McMillen, 4.655, 167.34.

Funny Car _ 1. Del Worsham, Toyota Camry, 4.000, 317.34; 2. Tommy Johnson Jr., Dodge Charger, 4.030, 319.67; 3. John Force, Ford Mustang, 4.034, 319.45; 4. Matt Hagan, Charger, 4.044, 318.69; 5. Chad Head, Camry, 4.052, 318.02; 6. Jack Beckman, Charger, 4.064, 317.94; 7. Bob Tasca III, Mustang, 4.065, 315.12; 8. Cruz Pedregon, Camry, 4.077, 308.21; 9. Ron Capps, Charger, 4.083, 310.48; 10. Robert Hight, Mustang, 4.096, 310.34; 11. Courtney Force, Mustang, 4.106, 321.42; 12. Alexis DeJoria, Camry, 4.127, 309.91.

Not Qualified _ 13. Tim Wilkerson, 4.140, 307.65; 14. Tony Pedregon, 4.153, 303.57; 15. Terry Haddock, 4.329, 275.51; 16. Jeff Diehl, 4.340, 260.71; 17. Jeff Arend, 4.704, 181.15.

Pro Stock _ 1. Erica Enders-Stevens, Chevy Camaro, 6.523, 212.63; 2. Shane Gray, Camaro, 6.527, 211.69; 3. Allen Johnson, Dodge Dart, 6.532, 211.89; 4. Chris McGaha, Camaro, 6.546, 211.53; 5. Vincent Nobile, Camaro, 6.551, 211.69; 6. Jeg Coughlin Jr., Dart, 6.554, 212.03; 7. Dave Connolly, Camaro, 6.557, 210.67; 8. Jason Line, Camaro, 6.564, 211.13; 9. Jonathan Gray, Camaro, 6.566, 211.69; 10. Rodger Brogdon, Camaro, 6.574, 210.90; 11. Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.576, 211.39; 12. Shane Tucker, Camaro, 6.609, 211.56.

Not Qualified _ 13. Larry Morgan, 6.613, 210.77; 14. V. Gaines, 6.628, 190.40; 15. John Gaydosh Jr., 6.684, 207.05; 16. Mark Hogan, 18.603, 35.35; 17. Travis Mazza, 89.000, no speed.

Pro Stock Motorcycle _ 1. Eddie Krawiec, Harley-Davidson, 6.844, 195.05; 2. Jerry Savoie, Suzuki, 6.865, 195.48; 3. John Hall, Buell, 6.882, 194.38; 4. Andrew Hines, Harley-Davidson, 6.913, 192.49; 5. Hector Arana, Buell, 6.919, 196.16; 6. Matt Smith, Buell, 6.928, 193.27; 7. Shawn Gann, Buell, 6.933, 192.41; 8. Angie Smith, Buell, 6.933, 191.57; 9. Michael Ray, Buell, 6.943, 190.65; 10. Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 6.964, 192.08; 11. Scotty Pollacheck, Buell, 6.987, 191.76; 12. Chaz Kennedy, Buell, 6.989, 188.38.

Not Qualified _ 13. Jim Underdahl, 7.009, 192.93; 14. Justin Finley, 7.012, 192.14; 15. Joe DeSantis, 7.022, 188.78; 16. Elvira Karlsson, 7.072, 183.37; 17. Adam Arana, 7.354, 148.12; 18. Wendell Daniels, 8.211, 119.70; 19. Hector Arana Jr., 13.922, 55.34.

| , RacinToday.com Saturday, July 5 2014
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