Home » FEATURE STORY, NHRA

The Roll Continues For The Force Sisters In N.C.

| Senior Writer, RacinToday.com Saturday, April 28 2018

Brittany Force held on to P1 during Saturday’s final rounds of qualifying at zMAX Dragway in North Carolina. (RacinToday/Harold Hinson photo)

By Deb Williams | Senior Writer
RacinToday.com

CONCORD, N.C. – Sisters Brittany and Courtney Force proved to be formidable in qualifying at the same event for the third time in their career Saturday, walking off with the No. 1 positions in their respective classes in the NGK Spark Plugs NHRA 4-Wide Nationals at zMAX Dragway.

The previous two occasions when Brittany was No. 1 in Top Fuel and Courtney No. 1 in Funny Car came at Topeka, Kan., and Sonoma, Calif., both in 2014. Courtney emerged the victor at both events, while Brittany’s effort at Topeka was a track record at the time.

With qualifying now completed, Brittany has her first No. 1 position this year and ninth of her career, while Courtney has her third this season and the 20th of her career. Courtney also was the No. 1 qualifier for the inaugural 4-Wide event at Las Vegas three weeks ago.

“We’re on a roll,” said Brittany, who eclipsed the track record of 3.713 seconds during Friday night’s second round qualifying with an E.T of 3.689 seconds.

“It’s pretty cool that two ladies ended up No. 1, especially because we’re sisters, so that makes it special.”

Courtney’s best run – 3.873 seconds, 332.92 mph – came in Friday’s first round when temperatures were cool; similar to the weather predicted for Sunday.  However, she said her team needed to take what it learned Saturday in the heat and combine it with the lessons from Friday if it hoped to be successful Sunday. She also said her crew chief tells her to get into her routine and stay with it throughout qualifying and race day.

“Sometimes I try to get into a different mindset on race day and I’m trying to take his advice on that,” Courtney said.

“We learn from the lanes, go back, sit at the computer and study it. I study my run from video and then we look at data and see what it’s telling us.”

In the other two professional categories, Drew Skillman held on to the No. 1 position in Pro Stock with his 6.534-second E.T. that he acquired in Friday night’s second round. The only No. 1 position that changed Saturday was in Pro Stock Motorcycle when LE Tonglet ran an E.T. of 6.812 seconds in the third round. He unseated Cory Reed, who posted a 6.838 E.T. Friday night.

“Our car has run pretty good all weekend,” said Skillman. “After the second hit we had a lot of momentum going forward this weekend and we have a little bit of work to go yet before Sunday but our team is ready, our car is ready, and I’m ready to go.”
Skillman has yet to win this season and will face Val Smeland, Erica Enders and Jason Line in search of his sixth career victory.
Tonglet, in his first race back with the White Alligator Racing (WAR) Pro Stock Motorcycle team owned by 2016 world champ Jerry Savoie, raced to the No. 1 position with his run of 6.812 at 196.99 in the third round of qualifying. Tonglet the defending event winner, is the 2010 category champion, and earned his sixth career top position on his KPK/Nitrofish Suzuki.
“The success is all on team WAR and we couldn’t do it without them,” said Tonglet. “The build an awesome team, a really good program, and I’m just fortunate to be part of it. The bike is flying and I’m looking forward to going three rounds tomorrow. This is the only track I can say that. We just need to go out there and get win lights at the other end and I feel like I can do that.”

Sunday’s eliminations begin at noon.

###

CONCORD, N.C. — First-round pairings for professional eliminations Sunday for the ninth annual NGK Spark Plugs NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMax Dragway, the sixth of 24 events in theNHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series. Pairings based on results in qualifying, which ended Saturday. DNQs listed below pairings.
Top Fuel — 1. Brittany Force, 3.689 seconds, 318.39 mph vs. 16. Audrey Worm, 4.143, 256.84 vs. 8. Shawn Reed, 3.838, 323.43 vs. 9. Scott Palmer, 3.841, 313.58; 2. Tony Schumacher, 3.692, 331.61 vs. 15. Leah Pritchett, 4.004, 294.31 vs. 7. Clay Millican, 3.773, 323.27 vs. 10. Dom Lagana, 3.846, 270.21; 3. Antron Brown, 3.719, 331.77 vs. 14. Richie Crampton, 3.938, 307.86 vs. 6. Doug Kalitta, 3.758, 327.98 vs. 11. Mike Salinas, 3.884, 309.77; 4. Steve Torrence, 3.731, 330.72 vs. 13. Kyle Wurtzel, 3.906, 301.40 vs. 5. Terry McMillen, 3.744, 329.75 vs. 12. Pat Dakin, 3.905, 315.34.
Did Not Qualify: 17. Terry Haddock, 4.227, 283.43.
Funny Car — 1. Courtney Force, Chevy Camaro, 3.873, 332.92 vs. 16. Jim Campbell, Dodge Charger, 4.135, 307.44 vs. 8. John Force, Camaro, 3.938, 328.06 vs. 9. Tim Wilkerson, Ford Mustang, 3.949, 320.81; 2. Ron Capps, Charger, 3.886, 329.83 vs. 15. Dale Creasy Jr., Dodge Stratus, 4.089, 315.12 vs. 7. Robert Hight, Camaro, 3.920, 323.50 vs. 10. Jonnie Lindberg, Mustang, 3.960, 319.29; 3. Tommy Johnson Jr., Charger, 3.887, 328.70 vs. 14. John Smith, Chevy Monte Carlo, 4.082, 307.23 vs. 6. Cruz Pedregon, Toyota Camry, 3.908, 321.42 vs. 11. Matt Hagan, Charger, 3.966, 320.89; 4. J.R. Todd, Camry, 3.888, 330.96 vs. 13. Jack Beckman, Charger, 3.983, 316.08 vs. 5. Bob Tasca III, Mustang, 3.907, 326.16 vs. 12. Shawn Langdon, Camry, 3.973, 325.45.
Did Not Qualify: 17. Jeff Diehl, 4.247, 296.37.
Pro Stock — 1. Drew Skillman, Chevy Camaro, 6.534, 211.69 vs. 16. Val Smeland, Camaro, 6.655, 209.07 vs. 8. Erica Enders, Camaro, 6.561, 210.60 vs. 9. Jason Line, Camaro, 6.562, 210.93; 2. Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.548, 211.79 vs. 15. Kenny Delco, Camaro, 6.636, 208.75 vs. 7. Tanner Gray, Camaro, 6.560, 210.90 vs. 10. Chris McGaha, Camaro, 6.564, 211.66; 3. Vincent Nobile, Camaro, 6.549, 210.83 vs. 14. Alan Prusiensky, Dodge Dart, 6.632, 208.39 vs. 6. Jeg Coughlin, Camaro, 6.558, 211.06 vs. 11. Matt Hartford, Camaro, 6.565, 210.93; 4. Bo Butner, Camaro, 6.556, 210.90 vs. 13. John Gaydosh Jr, Chevrolet Camaro, 6.618, 208.81 vs. 5. Deric Kramer, Camaro, 6.557, 211.26 vs. 12. Alex Laughlin, Camaro, 6.571, 210.93.
Did Not Qualify: 17. Wally Stroupe, 6.870, 201.79; 18. Tommy Lee, 15.830, 55.12.
Pro Stock Motorcycle — 1. LE Tonglet, Suzuki, 6.812, 197.59 vs. 16. Jim Underdahl, Suzuki, 6.942, 195.25 vs. 8. Jerry Savoie, Suzuki, 6.841, 195.48 vs. 9. Hector Arana Jr, EBR, 6.847, 197.31; 2. Eddie Krawiec, Harley-Davidson, 6.814, 197.80 vs. 15. Ryan Oehler, Buell, 6.934, 195.11 vs. 7. Cory Reed, Buell, 6.838, 196.96 vs. 10. Joey Gladstone, Suzuki, 6.866, 196.56; 3. Scotty Pollacheck, Suzuki, 6.816, 197.74 vs. 14. Angie Smith, Buell, 6.929, 194.38 vs. 6. Matt Smith, Victory, 6.836, 196.73 vs. 11. Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 6.866, 193.63; 4. Andrew Hines, Harley-Davidson, 6.827, 198.29 vs. 13. Karen Stoffer, Suzuki, 6.919, 194.27 vs. 5. Hector Arana, EBR, 6.833, 199.17 vs. 12. Angelle Sampey, Buell, 6.898, 196.30.
Did Not Qualify: 17. Mark Paquette, 6.980, 192.88; 18. Kelly Clontz, 7.041, 189.87; 19. Scott Bottorff, 7.055, 190.73; 20. Lance Bonham, 7.179, 188.10; 21. Melissa Surber, 7.397, 152.92.
| Senior Writer, RacinToday.com Saturday, April 28 2018
No Comment

Comments are closed.