‘Just the ultimate:’ Leaders can’t wait for Sunday’s NHRA Four-Wide eliminations

From staff reports

Saturday qualifying for the National Hot Rod Association Four-Wide Nationals at zMAX Dragway saw the top qualifiers from Friday maintain their No. 1 positions heading into Sunday’s eliminations.

Clay Millican’s 3.716-second pass at 325.77 miles per hour from Friday held up to pace Top Fuel qualifying by .002 seconds over Doug Kalitta. Millican’s No. 1 qualifier spot is his second in a row.

“That’s just the ultimate,” Millican said. “I know every time we show up at the race track that we can win. With this car and this team (Stringer Performance), I think that every time we go (out) we can win the race.

“I like my odds (Sunday). … I’m looking forward to it. It’s going to be warmer.”

Courtney Force held onto the No. 1 qualifier position in Funny Car after her track-record 3.851-second, 323.27-mph pass on Friday held up. Teammates Robert Hight and John Force continued the 1-2-3 result for John Force Racing.

“I’m glad for the team. They did an amazing job,” Force said. “This is my third straight No. 1 qualifier and I’m really excited for that. Our Chevy Camaro is flying down the race track. … I’m really proud of my guys. Our goal (Sunday) is to go through the rounds and pick up those points.”

The top qualifiers in Pro Stock and Pro Stock Motorcycle used their times from Friday night to corral the No. 1 seeds for Sunday’s eliminations. Jeg Coughlin (Pro Stock) posted the quickest time with a 6.578-second, 210.24-mph pass to edge Erica Enders by .005 seconds. Pro Stock Motorcycle qualifying ended with Jerry Savoie in first thanks to his 6.824-second, 196.30-mph run on Friday.

Troy Coughlin’s 5.770-second, 254.95-mph pass on Friday stuck as the top run for Pro Mod, which is racing four-wide for the first time in class history.


Sunday: Ahead of elimination rounds, the midway opens at 9 a.m. ... Pre-race ceremonies begin 10:30 a.m. ...The first round of nitro eliminations start at noon, the second round at 2:10 p.m., and finals at 3:50 p.m.