PRUETT, HAGAN, STANFIELD AND MR SMITH WIN PROVISIONAL NO. 1 POSITIONS AT MILE-HIGH NATIONALS
On Friday, Tony Stewart Racing teammates Leah Pruett and Matt Hagan ranked provisional No. 1 in Top Fuel and Funny Car, moving into the top spots in the 42nd Dodge Power Brokers NHRA Mile-High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway.
Aaron Stanfield (Pro Stock) and Matt Smith (Pro Stock Motorcycle) are also the No. 1 provisional qualifiers at Race 11 of 22 in the 2022 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series season. It is also the first three-race NHRA Western Swing event.
After struggling in his first race of the day, Top Fuel’s Pruett and his team rebounded with a 3.788 second run at 326.79 mph in his 11,000 horsepower Dodge Power Brokers dragster. If it holds, Pruett would earn their first No. 1 qualifier of the season, while the freshman TSR team of Pruett and Hagan would look to qualify No. 1 together for the first time as well. Pruett, who picked up a win in Denver, was also thrilled with the work her team put in on Friday that led to the solid assist.
“It’s extremely cool. I mean, you still believe this can happen,” Pruett said. Matt and I have been saying it all week. You have to be positive, and we’re talking about simultaneously parking our cars in the winner’s circle and then we went out in Q1 and it was a punch. We weren’t trying to go No. 1. We were trying to establish a baseline. (But) for both of us to keep our #1 is a nice feeling, especially during our Dodge run, I’m so incredibly happy right now.
Greg Carillo posted a solid 3.824 at 318.24, putting him second, while Clay Millican’s run of 3.826 at 312.93 gave him third place after two qualifying sessions at Thunder Mountain.
Hagan clocked 3.927 seconds at 319.07 mph in his 11,000 horsepower Dodge Power Brokers Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat to close out qualifying in a thrilling side-by-side session with Robert Hight, putting the three-time world champion in line for the fourth number. 1 qualifier of 2022 and 47th in his career. Hagan, who is currently second in points, won in Denver for the first time in his career last year, and he is off to a great start in his sponsor’s race as he seeks to reclaim the points lead. .
“That mountain air is hard on those engines,” Hagan said. “It takes time for me to acclimatize to this place. With the race car we have to stay one step ahead. We have a good combination from last year and we just pulled it off the shelf and had two good runs in a row. We didn’t just go out and back for one race. For everything we’ve done this year with TSR, I had a good feeling going into this business. I don’t know about tomorrow’s weather, but if the conditions are the same, we could do better. Nothing is said and done until tomorrow.
Hight, who took the points lead in Funny Car with his win at Norwalk, had a solid run next to Hagan, dropping from 3.936 to 324.51. Tim Wilkerson went 3.973 to 321.50, putting the veteran in third place.
Stanfield made a strong first impression on his Pro Stock debut on Thunder Mountain, posting the fastest run in each of the two qualifying sessions, including an impressive 6.946-196.73 run in his Janac Brothers Chevrolet Camaro for end the day. Stanfield is after his fourth No. .
“It’s definitely a confidence booster,” Stanfield said. “I know I have a fast hot rod. This is my first time running Pro Stock on the mountain and those shifts are super fast. I can’t thank my guys enough. We are having fun. The first three gears go up so fast, it’s different from anywhere we race. Fortunately, our team leaders have a lot of data here and it helps us all. Tomorrow, the goal is to clean up my lag points. They are not yet perfect. There is always room for improvement.
Fernando Cuadra Jr. moved up to second with his run of 6.953 at 196.47, while Matt Hartford is third after two sessions thanks to his run of 6.957 at 196.87.
Smith, the reigning world champion and event winner, made a strong statement to open Friday’s Pro Stock Motorcycle qualifying, setting the track record with his 7.107 run at 189.31 on his Denso Auto Parts Buell. If it holds, Smith would clinch his second first-place finish this season and 49th of his career. The five-time world champion opted to return to his Buell for the weekend at Thunder Mountain and after the first day of qualifying, it seems like a strong decision for the star.
“I guess we’ll see what Sunday brings, but a lot of factors played into that decision to drive a Buell,” Smith said. “I’ve never ridden a Suzuki here and I didn’t want to risk hurting it. I want to be able to race it next week in Sonoma if I decide. Last year I was #1 and won the race on my Buell. It’s basically the same package, and this Denso Buell is detestable.
Angelle Sampey, who won the most recent event in Norwalk, had the best run of the second session and currently sits in second place with a 7.171 at 186.95. Points leader Steve Johnson is close behind after going 7.180 at 183.54.
Qualifying continues at 2:30 p.m. ET Saturday at the Dodge Power Brokers NHRA Mile-High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway.
Friday’s results after the first two of four qualifying rounds for the 42nd Dodge Power Brokers NHRA Mile-High National Championships at Bandimere Speedway, 11th of 22 events in the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series. Qualifying will continue on Saturday for Sunday’s final eliminations.
Superior fuel — 1. Leah Pruett, 3.788 seconds, 326.79 mph; 2. Greg Carrillo, 3.824, 318.24; 3. Millican clay, 3.826, 312.93; 4.Josh Hart, 3.843, 314.17; 5. Steve Torrence, 3.850, 320.97; 6. Shawn Langdon, 3.901, 312.93; 7. Austin Prock, 3.904, 312.86; 8. Mike Salinas, 3.910, 299.06; 9. Doug Kalitta, 3.915, 310.27; 10. Alex Laughlin, 3.923, 284.62; 11. Justin Ashley, 4.016, 294.95; 12. Tony Schumacher, 4.036, 249.21; 13. Cameron Ferré, 4.194, 289.82; 14. Force of Brittany, 4.198, 201.52; 15. Terry Totten, 4.304, 227.31; 16. Rob Passey, 4.464, 240.38.
Non qualified: 17. Anthony Brown, 5.415, 160.79.
funny car — 1. Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger, 3.927, 319.07; 2.Robert Hight, Chevy Camaro, 3.936, 324.51; 3. Tim Wilkerson, Ford Mustang, 3.973, 321.50; 4. John Force, Camaro, 3.978, 325.06; 5. Bob Tasca III, Mustang, 3.987, 323.43; 6. Alexis DeJoria, Toyota Supra, 4.005, 315.64; 7. JR Todd, Supra, 4.051, 323.04; 8. Paul Lee, loader, 4.059, 288.03; 9. Ron Capps, supra, 4.075, 280.66; 10. Cruz Pedregon, loader, 4.081, 308.14; 11. Chad Green, Mustang, 4.082, 301.60; 12. Jim Campbell, loader, 4.149, 300.26; 13. Terry Haddock, Mustang, 4.383, 226.16; 14. Jack Wyatt, Charger, 4.850, 176.47.
Professional inventory — 1. Aaron Stanfield, Chevy Camaro, 6.946, 196.73; 2. Fernando Cuadra Jr., Ford Mustang, 6.953, 196.47; 3. Matt Hartford, Camaro, 6.957, 196.87; 4. Cristian Cuadra, Mustang, 6.957, 196.13; 5.Bo Butner, Camaro, 6.960, 195.34; 6. Troy Coughlin Jr., Camaro, 6.962, 196.70; 7. Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.965, 194.58; 8. Deric Kramer, Camaro, 6.973, 194.94; 9. Camrie Caruso, Camaro, 6.976, 192.80; 10. Chris McGaha, Camaro, 6.982, 196.27; 11. Dallas Glenn, Camaro, 6.991, 195.31; 12. Kyle Koretsky, Camaro, 6.992, 194.77; 13. Fernando Cuadra, Mustang, 6.998, 196.27; 14. Erica Enders, Camaro, 7.008, 196.10; 15.Mason McGaha, Camaro, 7.026, 194.80.
Pro Stock Motorcycle — 1. Matt Smith, EBR, 7.107, 189.31; 2. Angelle Sampey, Suzuki, 7.171, 186.95; 3.Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 7.180, 183.54; 4. Angie Smith, EBR, 7.184, 187.50; 5. Eddie Krawiec, Suzuki, 7.203, 186.69; 6. Marc Ingwersen, EBR, 7.215, 184.95; 7. Karen Stoffer, Suzuki, 7.240, 184.52; 8. Joey Gladstone, Suzuki, 7.240, 183.69; 9. Ryan Oehler, EBR, 7.276, 184.90; 10. Kelly Clontz, Suzuki, 7.334, 181.20; 11. Jerry Savoie, Suzuki, 7.336, 183.87; 12.Jianna Evaristo, Suzuki, 7.462, 176.26; 13. Jim Underdahl, Suzuki, 8.877, 107.09.