2019 NHRA CAROLINA NATIONALS - EVENT RESULTS
MONDAY RESULTS - TORRENCE, HIGHT, KRAMER AND HINES EMERGE VICTORIOUS AT THE NTK NHRA CAROLINA NATIONALS
Steve Torrence took over the Top Fuel points lead in the Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship when he defeated Doug Kalitta at the 12th annual NTK NHRA Carolina Nationals at zMAX Dragway.
Robert Hight (Funny Car), Deric Kramer (Pro Stock) and Andrew Hines (Pro Stock Motorcycle) all won in their respective categories at the third of six races in the 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship playoffs. It is also the 21st of 24 events during the 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season.
Defending world champion Torrence won this event for the second year in a row with a final round pass of 3.772-seconds at 323.19 mph in his Capco Contractors dragster to beat Kalitta. He also picked up wins against Lex Joon (who did not appear in the first round), Clay Millican and Justin Ashley on the way to his ninth win in 2019 and his 36th win in his Top Fuel career.
Kalitta beat Antron Brown, Leah Pritchett and Brittany Force on his side of the ladder before facing Torrence. The runner-up showing puts him second in the points race.
"To race Doug Kalitta, that guy is a legend," said Torrence. "I look up to him as a driver. So when you go up against him and to have the backlog of what led us to that point, coming in behind him in the points, making up some points in qualifying and then coming all the way down to the final round... a few years ago I probably would've gone up there and choked, letting that affect me and get into my head. With the success that we've had you build confidence in yourself. You trust in the team and the good Lord and you just go do the best you can. I knew that we had a car that could run with him and if I did my job, we could be right there with him on the tree. You can't let what or who is in the other lane influence you and that's what I was able to do today because you've got one of the best ever right there beside you."
Funny Car’s Hight went 3.917 at 329.02 in his Automobile Club of Southern California Chevrolet Camaro SS to win the final round when Jack Beckman went red at the starting line. This marks Hight's 500th round win, a distinction shared by only 19 other drivers. This win also puts him in the lead in the Countdown to the Championship. Hight faced Mike McIntire Jr., Tim Wilkerson and Matt Hagan on his way to the final round against Beckman.
Beckman, the No. 1 qualifier this weekend, got round wins against Dale Creasy, Tommy Johnson Jr. and Ron Capps before meeting Hight in the final round.
“The Auto Club Chevy team really pulled together and did a good job,” said Hight. “We’ve changed some things over the last few races. We’ve been struggling, but we went down the track every run this weekend. Great job to Jimmy Prock and Chris Cunningham (Crew Chiefs), and all the Auto Club guys.”
In Pro Stock, Kramer went 6.541 at 211.33 in the final round in his American Ethanol Novozymes Chevrolet Camaro to snag his second victory in 2019 and fourth of his career beating Matt Hartford in the final. He reached the final round with wins against Kenny Delco, Jeg Coughlin Jr. and Aaron Stanfield.
Hartford competed in his second consecutive final round after defeating Fernando Cuadra Jr., Chris McGaha and No. 1 qualifier Erica Enders.
“Our motto around the pit is, ‘Just don’t screw up. Make them beat you,’” said Kramer. “And that’s what a lot of today was. Nothing was super stellar; nothing was super fast. But I was able to hold on just long enough and got to 1320 first and that’s all she wrote.”
Hines picked up his eighth Pro Stock Motorcycle win of the season in his Harley-Davidson when his pass of 6.805 at 199.37 defeated Karen Stoffer in the final round. He secured wins against Michael Ray, Scott Pollacheck and Hector Arana Jr. before facing Karen Stoffer in the finals for the second consecutive time this season. Stoffer took the victory when they met in St. Louis in September.
Stoffer raced to her third final round of the season after defeating Kelly Clontz, Eddie Krawiec and No. 1 qualifier Steve Johnson.
“It was a tough day,” said Hines. “We were sitting around during the rain delay yesterday talking about this Pro Stock Motorcycle class and how stacked it is right now. If you look at the top ten in qualifying, any one of those people could be number one at any given time. You just never know when that’s going to happen, so these races right now are hard fought and hard earned.”
The Mello Yello Drag Racing Series continues Oct. 17-20 with the fourth of six races in the Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship playoffs, the AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals at Texas Motorplex in Dallas.
SATURDAY - TORRENCE, BECKMAN, ENDERS AND JOHNSON LAND TOP SPOTS IN QUALIFYING AT CAROLINA NATS
Current Top Fuel world champion and defending event winner Steve Torrence will start raceday from the top position for the fourth time this year after an impressive show in qualifying during the 12th annual NTK NHRA Carolina Nationals at zMAX Dragway.
Jack Beckman (Funny Car), Erica Enders (Pro Stock) and Steve Johnson (Pro Stock Motorcycle) are also No. 1 qualifiers in their respective categories at the third of six races in the 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship playoffs.
Torrence powered his way to the top spot with an impressive pass of 3.711-seconds at 325.53 mph in his Capco Contractors dragster to earn the 23rd No. 1 qualifier of his career. Leah Pritchett raced into second place after her run of 3.714 at 331.20. She is followed by Brittany Force who ran 3.730 at 321.04 to secure the third spot.
"We ran really well last night (Friday) and I'm proud of that run," said Torrence. "Richard Hogan (Crew Chief), Bobby Lagana (Crew Chief) and every one of them Capco boys have done a really great job at supporting me. I started off this countdown a little bit rocky. I drove like I'd never sat in one of these things before and they really had my back. When you've got confidence in your team and in your car, it makes you a better driver and sometimes you have to look inward to see that and reflect on it."
Reflecting on raceday tomorrow, Torrence said, "We've had a lot of success here and I'm looking forward to it. It's going to be some quick and fast times out there tomorrow. The track will take whatever you're gonna throw at it. You've got to be out here and ready for war."
Funny Car’s Beckman went 3.873-seconds at 334.07 mph in his Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat to earn his second No. 1 qualifier of 2019 and 26th of his career, setting the track record for speed in the process. This is the first time that he will start this event from the top position.
“If Pomona (the final race of the season) ends up coming down to a three- or four-point championship, it’s going to be who managed qualifying best,” said Beckman. “And we got 13 points out of qualifying. That’s pretty good. Anybody who tells you they don’t count points either sucks at math or they’re lying to you.”
Sitting second in Funny Car qualifying is Robert Hight with a run of 3.878 at 334.07. Beckman’s teammate Matt Hagan is in the No. 3 spot after running 3.880 at 331.69.
In Pro Stock, Enders’ Friday pass of 6.506 at 211.86 in her Melling Performance / Elite Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro kept her in the top spot through Saturday. This marks her third consecutive No. 1 qualifier in the Countdown to the Championship. She also picked up her first win of the season two weeks ago in St. Louis. Her teammate Jeg Coughlin Jr. is in second place going into Sunday with his pass of 6.524 at 210.37 and Jason Line is third after running a 6.534 at 211.53.
“If we can continue the run we’re on from St. Louis last weekend, I’d be really thrilled,” said Enders, when she was interviewed by her fellow top qualifier Torrence in the NHRA media center. “I have a great hot rod underneath me and if I can just do my driving job there’s no reason why we can’t win.”
Pro Stock Motorcycle's Johnson powered his way to the top of the ladder on his Steve Johnson Racing Suzuki with a pass of 6.786 at 196.70. This is his first No. 1 qualifier of the season and the fourth of his career.
Jerry Savoie sits in second after running 6.787 at 198.73. Andrew Hines rounds out the top three in Pro Stock Motorcycle with a run of 6.814 at 198.79.
In the E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by J&A Service, Todd Tutterow powered his ’68 Camaro to the top qualifying spot with a pass of 5.744 at 251.30.
Eliminations for the NTK NHRA Carolina Nationals begin Sunday at 11:00 a.m.
Sunday's first-round pairings for eliminations for the 12th annual NTK NHRA Carolina Nationals at zMax Dragway, the 21st 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. Steve Torrence, 3.711 seconds, 325.53 mph vs. 16. Lex Joon, 4.476, 168.75; 2. Leah Pritchett, 3.714, 331.20 vs. 15. Chris Karamesines, 4.468, 184.19; 3. Brittany Force, 3.730, 321.04 vs. 14. Smax Smith, 3.938, 281.01; 4. Richie Crampton, 3.732, 329.50 vs. 13. Austin Prock, 3.850, 316.15; 5. Mike Salinas, 3.752, 328.70 vs. 12. Justin Ashley, 3.831, 319.67; 6. Billy Torrence, 3.755, 325.92 vs. 11. Pat Dakin, 3.798, 320.28; 7. Antron Brown, 3.758, 328.94 vs. 10. Doug Kalitta, 3.773, 323.35; 8. Clay Millican, 3.764, 322.11 vs. 9. Terry McMillen, 3.767, 326.24.
Did Not Qualify: 17. Cameron Ferre, 5.014, 147.79; 18. Todd Paton, 5.399, 131.79.
Funny Car -- 1. Jack Beckman, Dodge Charger, 3.873, 334.07 vs. 16. Dale Creasy Jr., Charger, 4.385, 209.36; 2. Robert Hight, Chevy Camaro, 3.878, 334.07 vs. 15. Mike McIntire, Toyota Camry, 4.219, 256.99; 3. Matt Hagan, Charger, 3.880, 331.69 vs. 14. Dave Richards, Ford Mustang, 4.071, 297.16; 4. Ron Capps, Charger, 3.882, 330.55 vs. 13. Jim Campbell, Charger, 3.988, 316.75; 5. John Force, Camaro, 3.890, 331.45 vs. 12. J.R. Todd, Camry, 3.972, 308.43; 6. Bob Tasca III, Mustang, 3.891, 328.46 vs. 11. Jonnie Lindberg, Mustang, 3.972, 323.12; 7. Tim Wilkerson, Mustang, 3.945, 318.99 vs. 10. Shawn Langdon, Camry, 3.970, 326.00; 8. Tommy Johnson Jr., Charger, 3.950, 321.65 vs. 9. Cruz Pedregon, Charger, 3.955, 321.04.
Did Not Qualify: 17. Terry Haddock, 5.442, 127.92; 18. Bob Gilbertson, 7.810, 88.09.
Pro Stock -- 1. Erica Enders, Chevy Camaro, 6.506, 211.86 vs. 16. Cristian Cuadra, Ford Mustang, 6.611, 209.20; 2. Jeg Coughlin, Camaro, 6.524, 210.37 vs. 15. Val Smeland, Camaro, 6.598, 209.04; 3. Jason Line, Camaro, 6.534, 211.53 vs. 14. Shane Tucker, Camaro, 6.595, 209.26; 4. Matt Hartford, Camaro, 6.546, 211.00 vs. 13. Fernando Cuadra Jr., Camaro, 6.582, no speed; 5. Alex Laughlin, Camaro, 6.547, 210.83 vs. 12. Chris McGaha, Camaro, 6.572, 211.00; 6. Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.560, 210.64 vs. 11. Aaron Stanfield, Camaro, 6.571, 210.28; 7. Kenny Delco, Camaro, 6.562, 210.21 vs. 10. Deric Kramer, Camaro, 6.570, 209.95; 8. Fernando Cuadra, Camaro, 6.566, 210.67 vs. 9. Bo Butner, Camaro, 6.569, 210.83.
Did Not Qualify: 17. Alan Prusiensky, 6.626, 208.94; 18. Wally Stroupe, 6.647, 207.91; 19. Jeremy Martorella, 6.728, 205.57.
Pro Stock Motorcycle -- 1. Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 6.786, 196.70 vs. 16. Andie Rawlings, Suzuki, 7.214, 182.26; 2. Jerry Savoie, Suzuki, 6.787, 198.73 vs. 15. Jianna Salinas, Suzuki, 7.043, 190.11; 3. Andrew Hines, Harley-Davidson, 6.814, 198.79 vs. 14. Michael Ray, Victory, 6.945, 193.43; 4. Eddie Krawiec, Harley-Davidson, 6.818, 198.47 vs. 13. Matt Smith, EBR, 6.932, 179.85; 5. Karen Stoffer, Suzuki, 6.819, 197.97 vs. 12. Kelly Clontz, Suzuki, 6.915, 194.88; 6. Scotty Pollacheck, EBR, 6.822, 197.94 vs. 11. Hector Arana, EBR, 6.886, 197.22; 7. Hector Arana Jr, EBR, 6.856, 196.73 vs. 10. Angie Smith, EBR, 6.866, 198.15; 8. Angelle Sampey, Harley-Davidson, 6.860, 196.50 vs. 9. Ryan Oehler, EBR, 6.863, 198.03.
FRIDAY - BECKMAN, TORRENCE, ENDERS AND SAVOIE RISE TO PROVISIONAL TOP SPOTS AT NTK NHRA CAROLINA NATIONALS
Jack Beckman wowed the crowd during NHRA Prime Time qualifying on Friday, powering his way to the provisional No. 1 qualifying position in Funny Car during the 12th annual NTK NHRA Carolina Nationals at zMAX Dragway.
Steve Torrence (Top Fuel), Erica Enders (Pro Stock) and Jerry Savoie (Pro Stock Motorcycle) are also provisional No. 1 qualifiers in their respective categories at the third of six races in the 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship playoffs.
Beckman went 3.873-seconds at 334.07 mph in his Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat. If his pass holds, he'll snag his second No. 1 qualifier of 2019 and 26th of his career. In the provisional second qualifying spot is Robert Hight with a run of 3.878 at 334.07. Beckman’s teammate Ron Capps is in the No. 3 spot after running 3.882 at 330.55.
“I was a little surprised at the E.T.," said Beckman. "We did a lot of things at the last minute there. (John) Medlen (Crew Chief) will get on the radio and say, 'Here's the deal. There's a couple bald spots; we are going to put you over on the right side of the lane.' He says, 'You can't let the car get to the right anymore. You've got to drive it back over toward the middle.' The point is, I just didn't get to enjoy any part of that run. It just didn't feel that fast to me because I was thinking so much about the things that I needed to do right. And when the 87 came up there it was awesome. We were in and we were in solid. There's no way I thought that was going to hold simply because you had six more pairs of cars behind us that just saw what the race track was capable of."
Current Top Fuel world champion Torrence put down an impressive 3.711 at 325.53 in his Capco Contractors dragster. It would give Torrence his third No. 1 qualifier this year and 23rd in his career if it holds. Richie Crampton is currently in second place after his run of 3.742 at 328.06 followed by Antron Brown who ran 3.758 at 328.94 to snag the third spot.
In Pro Stock, Enders’ 6.506 at 211.86 rocketed her to the provisional No. 1 spot in her Melling Performance / Elite Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro. Enders is after her third consecutive No. 1 qualifier in the Countdown to the Championship. Her teammate Jeg Coughlin Jr. is currently in second with his pass of 6.524 at 210.37 and Jason Line rounds out the provisional top three with a run of 6.534 at 211.53.
Pro Stock Motorcycle's Savoie raced to the top spot on his White Alligator Racing Suzuki, going 6.801 at 196.85. It would be his first No. 1 qualifier of the season if it holds. Eddie Krawiec is currently qualified second with a pass of 6.818 at 198.47 and his teammate Andrew Hines sits in third with a 6.837 at 198.41.
Qualifying continues Saturday at the NTK NHRA Carolina Nationals at 1:15 p.m.
Friday's results after the first two of four rounds of qualifying for the 12th annual NTK NHRA Carolina Nationals at zMax Dragway, 21st of 24 events in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series. Qualifying will continue Saturday for Sunday's final eliminations.
Top Fuel -- 1. Steve Torrence, 3.711 seconds, 325.53 mph; 2. Richie Crampton, 3.742, 328.06; 3. Antron Brown, 3.758, 328.94; 4. Billy Torrence, 3.765, 325.77; 5. Doug Kalitta, 3.777, 326.48; 6. Mike Salinas, 3.793, 329.91; 7. Pat Dakin, 3.798, 320.28; 8. Terry McMillen, 3.806, 318.24; 9. Brittany Force, 3.829, 271.46; 10. Justin Ashley, 3.831, 319.67; 11. Clay Millican, 4.467, 173.14; 12. Chris Karamesines, 4.773, 163.93; 13. Cameron Ferre, 5.014, 147.79; 14. Austin Prock, 5.646, 122.60; 15. Leah Pritchett, 6.346, 95.64; 16. Smax Smith, 7.577, 73.07.
Not Qualified: 17. Todd Paton, 11.622, 89.25; 18. Lex Joon, 15.893, 48.20.
Funny Car -- 1. Jack Beckman, Dodge Charger, 3.873, 334.07; 2. Robert Hight, Chevy Camaro, 3.878, 334.07; 3. Ron Capps, Charger, 3.882, 330.55; 4. John Force, Camaro, 3.890, 331.45; 5. Matt Hagan, Charger, 3.906, 328.22; 6. Bob Tasca III, Ford Mustang, 3.939, 324.20; 7. Tim Wilkerson, Mustang, 3.945, 318.99; 8. J.R. Todd, Toyota Camry, 3.972, 308.43; 9. Cruz Pedregon, Charger, 3.976, 326.08; 10. Jim Campbell, Charger, 3.988, 316.75; 11. Jonnie Lindberg, Mustang, 4.000, 322.50; 12. Dave Richards, Mustang, 4.071, 297.16; 13. Mike McIntire, Camry, 4.219, 256.99; 14. Tommy Johnson Jr., Charger, 4.233, 219.08; 15. Dale Creasy Jr., Charger, 4.598, 182.11; 16. Terry Haddock, Mustang, 5.442, 127.92.
Not Qualified: 17. Shawn Langdon, 5.871, 121.08; 18. Bob Gilbertson, 7.810, 88.09.
Pro Stock -- 1. Erica Enders, Chevy Camaro, 6.506, 211.86; 2. Jeg Coughlin, Camaro, 6.524, 210.37; 3. Jason Line, Camaro, 6.534, 211.53; 4. Matt Hartford, Camaro, 6.546, 211.00; 5. Alex Laughlin, Camaro, 6.548, 209.92; 6. Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.560, 210.64; 7. Kenny Delco, Camaro, 6.562, 210.21; 8. Fernando Cuadra, Camaro, 6.566, 210.67; 9. Bo Butner, Camaro, 6.572, 211.13; 10. Chris McGaha, Camaro, 6.572, 211.00; 11. Fernando Cuadra Jr., Camaro, 6.582, 214.93; 12. Deric Kramer, Camaro, 6.598, 210.14; 13. Val Smeland, Camaro, 6.598, 209.04; 14. Shane Tucker, Camaro, 6.606, 209.46; 15. Aaron Stanfield, Camaro, 6.609, 209.95; 16. Cristian Cuadra, Ford Mustang, 6.611, 209.20.
Not Qualified: 17. Alan Prusiensky, 6.626, 208.94; 18. Wally Stroupe, 6.647, 207.91; 19. Jeremy Martorella, 6.818, 201.34.
Pro Stock Motorcycle -- 1. Jerry Savoie, Suzuki, 6.801, 196.85; 2. Eddie Krawiec, Harley-Davidson, 6.818, 198.47; 3. Andrew Hines, Harley-Davidson, 6.837, 198.41; 4. Karen Stoffer, Suzuki, 6.842, 196.64; 5. Angelle Sampey, Harley-Davidson, 6.860, 196.50; 6. Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 6.883, 194.52; 7. Hector Arana, EBR, 6.886, 197.22; 8. Hector Arana Jr, EBR, 6.886, 197.13; 9. Scotty Pollacheck, EBR, 6.892, 195.62; 10. Ryan Oehler, EBR, 6.897, 194.74; 11. Angie Smith, EBR, 6.956, 193.32; 12. Michael Ray, Victory, 6.977, 191.65; 13. Kelly Clontz, Suzuki, 7.031, 192.36; 14. Matt Smith, EBR, 7.076, 162.49; 15. Andie Rawlings, Suzuki, 7.214, 182.26; 16. Jianna Salinas, Suzuki, 7.276, 187.47.