2019 NORTHWEST NATIONALS - EVENT RESULTS
SUNDAY - FORCE GETS WIN NO. 150, PROCK SECURES FIRST VICTORY AND HARTFORD GRABS WIN AT NHRA NORTHWEST NATIONALS
John Force powered to his 150th Funny Car win on Sunday, rolling to the milestone victory at the 32nd annual Magic Dry Absorbent NHRA Northwest Nationals.
While Force earned his 150th career win, John Force Racing teammate and Top Fuel rookie Austin Prock picked up his first career win as part of a historic day for JFR. Matt Hartford also won in Pro Stock at the 16th of 24 races during the 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season. It was the final of three races on the famed NHRA Western Swing.
Force, the 16-time Funny Car world champion and the NHRA’s winningest driver, beat Ron Capps in the final round thanks to his run of 3.971-seconds at 320.58 mph in his PEAK Chevrolet Camaro. Capps ran 4.018 at 309.91 in the final round. It marked Force’s first victory in 25 races dating back to last season and his ninth career win at Pacific Raceways.
“I give credit to a lot of crew chiefs over the years,” Force said. “I got the monkey off my back and it drove me nuts. But it taught me to focus on my car if I want to do (well). I had to get to know my car and sometimes you need a slap in the face. That was the monkey that made me focus. I’ve been living it here the last 4-5 races and we found something real critical. I may not be as young as these kids, but I’m excited. I can calm down now and not live with that thinking that I’ll never get it.”
Force beat Jim Campbell, JFR teammate and points leader Robert Hight and Jack Beckman to reach the final round for the 253rd time in his NHRA career. Capps, who is second all-time in Funny Car wins to Force, beat Tim Wilkerson, defending world champ J.R. Todd and Matt Hagan to make his 121st final round. Force, though, prevailed in the 103rd head-to-head matchup between the two longtime rivals on Sunday in the championship round.
“Give me a good race car and I can race,” Force said. “I know Capps wanted to beat me and he was giving it all he had. He’s the real deal, he’s a real great racer, and today luck was just with me and I got the win. Ron was the first one over to congratulate me and that’s the kind of guy he is. But there’s certain tracks I’m really happy at and I’ve always loved Seattle. I’m in the hunt and that’s all I ever wanted to do was to be in the hunt.”
Top Fuel rookie Prock picked up his first professional win by going 3.875 at 307.86 in his Montana Brand/Rocky Mountain Twist dragster to beat defending world champ and points leader Steve Torrence in the finals. Prock beat Leah Pritchett, Clay Millican and Mike Salinas to reach his first career final round as well.
Torrence advanced to his 52nd final round by beating Steve Chrisman, Antron Brown and Shawn Reed. Prock was motivated to try and knock off Torrence, who has eight wins this season, in the finals after watching Force pick up his 150th win the pair before him.
“This is just unbelievable,” Prock said. “I have to thank John Force for giving me this opportunity. I’m still speechless. This is a dream come true. I’ve wanted this ever since I was knee-high. Ever since I could think, I wanted to drive a Top Fuel car. We said when John gets 150, I’m going to get my first one and it all came together perfectly. We put all the pieces of the puzzle together today. I wanted to race (Torrence) in the final round. I wanted to be the guy that stopped him.”
In Pro Stock, Hartford denied Greg Anderson the chance to sweep the Western Swing, going 6.606 at 209.33 in the final round in his Total Seal Camaro to beat Anderson on a holeshot. Anderson went 6.596 at 210.31, but Hartford was quicker off the starting line to pick up the win for the first time this season and second time in his career.
Hartford beat points leader Bo Butner, No. 1 qualifier Jeg Coughlin Jr. and Deric Kramer to reach the final round, while Anderson knocked off Fernando Cuadra Jr., Erica Enders and Alex Laughlin to earn his 156th finals appearance. Anderson had a chance to become the first driver in NHRA history sweep the Western Swing twice, but Hartford delivered an impressive final-round showing in a rematch of the opening race of the Western Swing. Hartford also picked up his first career head-to-head win against the four-time world champ.
“We had a win light against Bo, which really set the momentum for the day,” Hartford said. “Greg Anderson is obviously one of the best that’s ever raced in the class and he’s closing in some monumental records. But he had beaten me 10 out of 10 times and, once again, we went up there knowing we had to go ‘A to B’ and whoever leaves first should win the race. We figured we had a good chance, the driver just had to be on his game.”
The Mello Yello Drag Racing Series continues Aug. 16-18 with the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals at Brainerd International Raceway in Brainerd, Minn.
SATURDAY - SALINAS, TASCA AND COUGHLIN SEAL NO. 1 QUALIFIERS AT NHRA NORTHWEST NATIONALS
Mike Salinas secured his fourth No. 1 qualifier of the 2019 NHRA season in Top Fuel on Saturday at the Magic Dry Organic Absorbent NHRA Northwest Nationals at Pacific Raceways.
Bob Tasca III (Funny Car) and Jeg Coughlin Jr. (Pro Stock) are also No. 1 qualifiers in their respective categories at the 16th of 24 races during the 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season. It is also the last of three races on the NHRA’s famed Western Swing.
Salinas’ run of 3.694-seconds at 327.66 mph in his Scrappers Racing dragster on Friday held up, giving him five career No. 1 qualifiers. Salinas will race for his third win this season on Sunday. Brittany Force qualified second after her Friday run of 3.702 at 326.87, while defending world champion and points leader Steve Torrence, who has eight wins this season, finished third in qualifying after going 3.705 at 328.46.
“Tomorrow is a different day, and you just have to go one round at a time and don’t get too far ahead of yourself or you get in trouble,” Salinas said. “The rest of the guys know we have our stuff together. Our team has their stuff together, and the driver just has to do his job and have fun with it.”
In Funny Car, Tasca’s career-best run of 3.871 at 330.63 in his Ford Performance/Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Shelby Mustang held up from Friday, giving Tasca his first No. 1 qualifier of 2019 and fourth in his career. He will meet Terry Haddock in the opening round of eliminations. Defending world champ J.R. Todd qualified second following a run of 3.886 at 325.85 on Friday and Matt Hagan will start raceday from the third position after his 3.888 at 329.75 from Friday.
Tasca’s Mustang suffered a massive engine explosion in the third qualifying session on Saturday, but he rebounded with a good run during the final qualifier and feels strong heading into raceday.
“I give the guys all the credit. We had to switch engines, switch bodies and assess what actually failed,” Tasca said. “We came back and made another solid run in Q4. These guys are battle-tested and we’ve been through the ups and downs, and I got back in that car with all the confidence in the world. With the way this car has run and how this team has performed, we’re feeling confident and we clearly have a car that can win.”
Coughlin claimed his first No. 1 qualifier of 2019 in Pro Stock thanks to his 6.539 at 210.57 from Friday in his JEGS.com Chevrolet Camaro. It gives Coughlin, a five-time world champion, his 30th career No. 1 qualifier and he will meet Alan Prusiensky in the opening round of eliminations.
The rest of the top three was unchanged from Friday as well, as Alex Laughlin, last weekend’s runner-up, stayed second with his 6.540 at 210.83, and Erica Enders is a spot behind in third thanks to her 6.542 at 210.97 from Friday. Greg Anderson qualified sixth after going 6.558 at 209.52 and will meet Fernando Cuadra Jr. in the opening round of eliminations as he tries to win in Seattle and sweep the Western Swing.
“We’ve run really well in qualifying here and the majority of our (Elite Motorsports) cars have, qualifying 1-2-3, but more importantly we want to run well tomorrow,” Coughlin said. “Friday we had a lot of cloud cover and we were very aggressive. Today, the track was a little trickier but the stronger cars ran well. We were fortunate to hold onto the top spot and we’ll look to take it the distance tomorrow.”
Eliminations at the Magic Dry Organic Absorbent NHRA Northwest Nationals begin at 11:00 a.m. PT on Sunday. Live finals action starts at 4:00 p.m. ET on the FOX national broadcast network.
Sunday's first-round pairings for eliminations for the 32nd annual NHRA Northwest Nationals at Pacific Raceways, the 16th of 24 events in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series. Pairings based on results in qualifying, which ended Saturday. DNQs listed below pairings.
Top Fuel -- 1. Mike Salinas, 3.694 seconds, 327.66 mph vs. Bye; 2. Brittany Force, 3.702, 326.87 vs. 15. Ron Smith, 7.735, 85.35; 3. Steve Torrence, 3.705, 328.46 vs. 14. Steven Chrisman, 5.101, 144.36; 4. Clay Millican, 3.705, 315.34 vs. 13. Cameron Ferre, 4.102, 230.72; 5. Leah Pritchett, 3.725, 323.58 vs. 12. Austin Prock, 3.778, 323.12; 6. Richie Crampton, 3.740, 326.79 vs. 11. Antron Brown, 3.769, 325.69; 7. Shawn Reed, 3.744, 323.81 vs. 10. Terry McMillen, 3.766, 323.19; 8. Doug Kalitta, 3.751, 323.97 vs. 9. Scott Palmer, 3.764, 319.82.
Funny Car -- 1. Bob Tasca III, Ford Mustang, 3.871, 330.63 vs. 16. Terry Haddock, Mustang, 4.264, 270.64; 2. J.R. Todd, Toyota Camry, 3.886, 325.85 vs. 15. Jeff Diehl, Camry, 4.224, 265.64; 3. Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger, 3.888, 329.75 vs. 14. Gary Densham, Mustang, 4.029, 312.42; 4. John Force, Chevy Camaro, 3.891, 328.86 vs. 13. Jim Campbell, Charger, 4.013, 319.60; 5. Robert Hight, Camaro, 3.892, 330.96 vs. 12. Blake Alexander, Mustang, 3.999, 313.37; 6. Shawn Langdon, Camry, 3.898, 328.30 vs. 11. Cruz Pedregon, Charger, 3.932, 324.90; 7. Ron Capps, Charger, 3.898, 326.24 vs. 10. Tim Wilkerson, Mustang, 3.924, 322.65; 8. Jack Beckman, Charger, 3.917, 326.79 vs. 9. Tommy Johnson Jr., Charger, 3.919, 327.19.
Pro Stock -- 1. Jeg Coughlin, Chevy Camaro, 6.539, 210.57 vs. 16. Alan Prusiensky, Dodge Dart, 6.622, 208.39; 2. Alex Laughlin, Camaro, 6.540, 210.83 vs. 15. Steve Graham, Camaro, 6.615, 208.20; 3. Erica Enders, Camaro, 6.542, 210.97 vs. 14. Steve Matusek, Ford Mustang, 6.588, 209.52; 4. Jason Line, Camaro, 6.547, 210.57 vs. 13. Val Smeland, Camaro, 6.587, 209.49; 5. Deric Kramer, Camaro, 6.550, 210.37 vs. 12. Kenny Delco, Camaro, 6.570, 210.21; 6. Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.558, 209.52 vs. 11. Fernando Cuadra Jr., Camaro, 6.569, 209.20; 7. Fernando Cuadra, Camaro, 6.559, 210.21 vs. 10. Chris McGaha, Camaro, 6.566, 210.50; 8. Bo Butner, Camaro, 6.560, 210.97 vs. 9.Matt Hartford, Camaro, 6.564, 209.46.
Did Not Qualify: 17. Joey Grose, 6.658, 208.65; 18. Cristian Cuadra, 6.767, 204.32.
FRIDAY - TASCA, SALINAS & COUGHLIN POWER THEIR WAY TO PROVISIONAL NO. 1 SPOTS AT NHRA NORTHWEST NATIONALS
Bob Tasca raced to the provisional No. 1 spot in Funny Car to lead the way on Friday during the Magic Dry Organic Absorbent NHRA Northwest Nationals at Pacific Raceways.
Mike Salinas (Top Fuel) and Jeg Coughlin Jr. (Pro Stock) are also provisional No. 1 qualifiers in their respective categories at the 16th of 24 races during the 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season. The event is also the final of three races during the NHRA’s famed Western Swing.
Tasca, who has two wins this season, powered to a career-best run of 3.871-seconds at 330.63 mph in his Ford Performance/Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Shelby Mustang to take the provisional top spot. It marks Tasca’s first run of more than 330 mph. If it holds, it would be Tasca’s first No. 1 qualifier of 2019 and fourth in his career. Defending world champ J.R. Todd’s 3.886 at 325.85 has him currently in second, while Matt Hagan ran 3.888 at 329.75, good enough for third.
“This is a set-up we’re really starting to dial in, and we kind of felt the 330-plus mph run and mid-3.80 run building,” Tasca said. “I’m just excited and humbled to be the behind of the wheel of this thing. This is a brand new body we needed to learn, and you just saw it come together tonight and put us in position to win on Sunday. At this point in the season you’re battle-tested and it’s all hands on deck. There’s a lot of hard work paying off and that’s what I’m most proud of, and this Mustang keeps getting stronger and stronger.”
Top Fuel’s Salinas drove his Scrappers Racing dragster to an impressive 3.694 at 327.66. It would give Salinas, who has two wins in 2019, his fourth No. 1 qualifier this year and fifth in his career if it holds. Brittany Force is currently second after going 3.702 at 326.87, while points leader and defending world champ Steve Torrence ran 3.705 at 328.46 to put him in the third position.
In Pro Stock, Coughlin went 6.539 at 210.57 to take the No. 1 spot in his JEGS.com Chevrolet Camaro. Coughlin is aiming for his first top qualifier of 2019 and 30th in his career. His Elite Motorsports teammates are in the next two spots, as Alex Laughlin, the runner-up last weekend in Sonoma, is second with a 6.541 at 210.64 and Erica Enders went 6.542 at 210.97 to sit in third. Greg Anderson, who is trying to sweep the Western Swing, is sixth after running 6.558 at 209.52.
Qualifying continues Saturday at the Magic Dry Organic Absorbent NHRA Northwest Nationals at 1:30 p.m. PT. Television coverage on FS1 includes live qualifying 5 p.m. ET, as well as additional action from qualifying at 10:30 p.m.
Friday's results after the first two of four rounds of qualifying for the 32nd annual NHRA Northwest Nationals at Pacific Raceways, 16th of 24 events in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series. Qualifying will continue Saturday for Sunday's final eliminations.
Top Fuel -- 1. Mike Salinas, 3.694 seconds, 327.66 mph; 2. Brittany Force, 3.702, 326.87; 3. Steve Torrence, 3.705, 328.46; 4. Clay Millican, 3.705, 315.34; 5. Leah Pritchett, 3.725, 323.58; 6. Richie Crampton, 3.740, 326.79; 7. Shawn Reed, 3.744, 323.81; 8. Doug Kalitta, 3.751, 323.97; 9. Scott Palmer, 3.764, 319.82; 10. Terry McMillen, 3.766, 323.19; 11. Antron Brown, 3.769, 325.69; 12. Austin Prock, 3.778, 323.12; 13. Cameron Ferre, 4.102, 230.72.
Funny Car -- 1. Bob Tasca III, Ford Mustang, 3.871, 330.63; 2. J.R. Todd, Toyota Camry, 3.886, 325.85; 3. Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger, 3.888, 329.75; 4. John Force, Chevy Camaro, 3.891, 328.86; 5. Shawn Langdon, Camry, 3.898, 328.30; 6. Ron Capps, Charger, 3.898, 326.24; 7. Robert Hight, Camaro, 3.907, 331.28; 8. Tim Wilkerson, Mustang, 3.924, 322.65; 9. Cruz Pedregon, Charger, 3.932, 324.90; 10. Tommy Johnson Jr., Charger, 3.941, 321.96; 11. Jack Beckman, Charger, 3.979, 320.20; 12. Jim Campbell, Charger, 4.013, 319.60; 13. Blake Alexander, Mustang, 4.020, 317.49; 14. Gary Densham, Mustang, 4.029, 312.42; 15. Terry Haddock, Mustang, 4.264, 270.64; 16. Jeff Diehl, Camry, 7.006, 97.61.
Pro Stock -- 1. Jeg Coughlin, Chevy Camaro, 6.539, 210.57; 2. Alex Laughlin, Camaro, 6.541, 210.64; 3. Erica Enders, Camaro, 6.542, 210.97; 4. Jason Line, Camaro, 6.547, 210.57; 5. Deric Kramer, Camaro, 6.550, 210.37; 6. Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.558, 209.52; 7. Fernando Cuadra, Camaro, 6.559, 210.21; 8. Bo Butner, Camaro, 6.564, 209.92; 9. Matt Hartford, Camaro, 6.564, 209.46; 10. Chris McGaha, Camaro, 6.566, 210.50; 11. Kenny Delco, Camaro, 6.570, 210.21; 12. Fernando Cuadra Jr., Camaro, 6.577, 209.23; 13. Val Smeland, Camaro, 6.587, 209.49; 14. Steve Matusek, Ford Mustang, 6.588, 209.52; 15. Steve Graham, Camaro, 6.615, 208.20; 16. Alan Prusiensky, Dodge Dart, 6.622, 208.39. Not Qualified: 17. Joey Grose, 6.672, 207.94; 18. Cristian Cuadra, 7.564, 198.67.