Torrence, Capps, Enders and Krawiec Head First Day's Qualifying at NHRA Carolina Nationals

Steve Torrence - top qualifier for day one

(CONCORD, NC – OCT 12, 2018 – RIS) Steve Torrence held on to the top qualifying spot through two rounds of time trials for the NHRA Carolina Nationals. Ron Capps currently sits at the front of the Funny Car field, "We knew coming in that conditions were going to be better than great, and they quite possibly could be as good tomorrow during Q4, so by all means we're not sitting on this No. 1," said Capps, who is aiming for his first No. 1 qualifier of the season and second at zMAX Dragway.

"In Q1, (crew chief Rahn) Tobler tuned our car just as he had during St. Louis Q3 and it went out and ran exactly the same," said Capps of his opening pass of 3.925-seconds, which held up to be third quickest of the session. "And then in Q2 he said it would run an 87 or 88, and it ran 87. When he gets that kind of confidence flowing through his veins, it really trickles down to everyone else around me. The best part is looking up and seeing Don Schumacher smiling because he gives us everything. These moments, to see the boss smile, it's big."

Top Fuel racer Steve Torrence remained the dominant car in the category on Friday and raced to the provisional qualifying lead in the category at the NHRA Carolina Nationals presented by WIX Filters at zMAX Dragway. 

Ron Capps (Funny Car), Erica Enders (Pro Stock), and Eddie Krawiec (Pro Stock Motorcycle) are also provisional No. 1 qualifiers in their respective categories at the fourth of six playoff events during the 2018 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Countdown to the Championship. 

Torrence has won the first three races in the Countdown and has a solo No. 1 qualifying position during that stretch. He earned the provisional top spot with the last qualifying pass of the session in his Capco Contractors dragster with a run 3.704-seconds at 331.53 mph. 

"It was really smooth early, all the way down there," said Torrence. "I enjoy coming here, racing and I enjoyed coming back. We have done really well in the four-wide format. We are going to try to carry the momentum we have right now into race day."

Clay Millican, who is the nearest challenger to Torrence in the points, is second with his run of 3.718 at 331.53 in his Parts Plus / Great Clips dragster posted during the evening session. Defending world champion, Brittany Force, in her Monster Energy dragster is third following her 3.724 at 328.14 attempt.

Funny Car's Ron Capps will look to secure his fist No. 1 qualifier of the year with his run of 3.726 at 328.54 in his NAPA Auto Parts NIGHTVISION Lamps Dodge Charger R/T. "We knew coming in that conditions were going to be great, better than great," said Capps. "It could quite possibly as good tomorrow in Q4. By all means we are not going to sit on this No. 1. Everybody knew coming in this was a great race track, the conditions were going to be good and you put it together, this is what you see."

Tim Wilkerson in his Levi, Ray & Shoup Ford Shelby Mustang is second with his pass of 3.876 at 323.74 and current points leader Robert Hight is seventh with a run of 3.911 at 330.31 in his Auto Club of Southern California Chevrolet Camaro SS. 

In Pro Stock, Enders took the category lead during the second qualifying session with her pass of 6.518 at 211.69 in her Elite Performance Chevrolet Camaro. Enders has one No. 1 qualifying position of the season which came at Brainerd, Minn. 

"We came off a test session prior to Dallas and felt like we made some strides in the right direction," said Enders. "We proved it in Dallas but unfortunately had a parts failure and lost second round. Coming here had the same confidence. After the first session Jeg (Coughlin, teammate) was No. 1 and I was No. 2. We went out and my crew chief said on the radio if we all do our job we can go to the pole and sure enough we all did our job and went to the pole."

Jeg Coughlin Jr. who was the No 1. qualifier at the past two events is second with his run of 6.525 at 212.16 and points leader Tanner Gray is fourth with his pass of 6.534 at 211.16.

Krawiec raced to the current No. 1 position during his second qualifying attempt on his Screamin' Eagle Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson with his run of 6.806 at 197.83. He has three No. 1 qualifying positions this season and 42 on his career. 

"It was a good lap and a good run for the session," said Krawiec. "Going into tomorrow, potentially cooler weather, earlier run, things like that, it could mean that run isn't going to stand like that as No. 1 qualifier. You look at five or six motorcycles that could definitely take the pole from me at any given time."

Teammate Chip Ellis is second after going 6.830 at 195.22 and points leader LE Tonglet sits sixth with a run of 6.867 at 196.33.

The second day of NHRA Carolina Nationals presented by WIX Filters qualifying continues Saturday at 12:45 p.m. (ET) on Saturday.

Top Fuel -- 
1. Steve Torrence, 3.704 seconds, 331.53 mph;
2. Clay Millican, 3.718, 321.73;
3. Brittany Force, 3.724, 328.14;
4. Doug Kalitta, 3.729, 327.19;
5. Tony Schumacher, 3.747, 330.39;
6. Dom Lagana, 3.762, 324.59;
7. Leah Pritchett, 3.763, 320.58;
8. Mike Salinas, 3.769, 327.35;
9. Terry McMillen, 3.769, 325.30;
10. Richie Crampton, 3.774, 318.99;
11. Scott Palmer, 3.788, 326.56;
12. Pat Dakin, 3.859, 312.57;
13. Kyle Wurtzel, 3.901, 291.82;
14. Chris Karamesines, 3.992, 282.66;
15. Antron Brown, 4.022, 239.14;
16. Lex Joon, 4.356, 178.19.
Not Qualified: 
17. Audrey Worm, 9.535, 77.65. 

Funny Car-- 
1. Ron Capps, Dodge Charger, 3.875, 329.42;
2. Tim Wilkerson, Ford Mustang, 3.876, 323.74;
3. J.R. Todd, Toyota Camry, 3.894, 327.90;
4. Tommy Johnson Jr., Charger, 3.901, 329.26;
5. Matt Hagan, Charger, 3.903, 325.14;
6. Cruz Pedregon, Camry, 3.906, 328.22;
7. Robert Hight, Chevy Camaro, 3.911, 330.31;
8. John Force, Camaro, 3.932, 329.26;
9. Courtney Force, Camaro, 3.945, 308.50;
10. Jack Beckman, Charger, 3.953, 324.98;
11. Shawn Langdon, Camry, 3.980, 324.44;
12. Bob Tasca III, Mustang, 4.004, 313.80;
13. Jim Campbell, Charger, 4.035, 309.42;
14. Dale Creasy Jr., Dodge Stratus, 4.235, 280.72;
15. Dave Richards, Mustang, 4.248, 272.94;
16. Jonnie Lindberg, Mustang, 4.869, 159.99.
Not Qualified: 
17. Bob Gilbertson, 7.007, 87.58. 

Pro Stock --
1. Erica Enders, Chevy Camaro, 6.518, 211.83;
2. Jeg Coughlin, Camaro, 6.525, 212.16;
3. Jason Line, Camaro, 6.525, 211.93;
4. Tanner Gray, Camaro, 6.534, 211.16;
5. Drew Skillman, Camaro, 6.537, 211.06;
6. Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.542, 211.93;
7. Vincent Nobile, Camaro, 6.545, 211.66;
8. Deric Kramer, Camaro, 6.550, 211.03;
9. Bo Butner, Camaro, 6.556, 211.56;
10. Alex Laughlin, Dodge Dart, 6.557, 211.06;
11. Fernando Cuadra, Camaro, 6.568, 210.73;
12. Alan Prusiensky, Dart, 6.625, 209.33;
13. Wally Stroupe, Camaro, 6.726, 205.41;
14. Shane Tucker, Camaro, 6.733, 204.35. 

Pro Stock Motorcycle --
1. Eddie Krawiec, Harley-Davidson, 6.806, 197.83;
2. Chip Ellis, Harley-Davidson, 6.830, 195.22;
3. Andrew Hines, Harley-Davidson, 6.842, 196.64;
4. Hector Arana Jr, EBR, 6.849, 199.29;
5. Jerry Savoie, Suzuki, 6.854, 194.86;
6. LE Tonglet, Suzuki, 6.867, 196.33;
7. Angelle Sampey, Buell, 6.869, 194.44;
8. Hector Arana, EBR, 6.876, 197.02;
9. Scotty Pollacheck, Suzuki, 6.879, 195.03;
10. Karen Stoffer, Suzuki, 6.884, 194.30;
11. Matt Smith, EBR, 6.895, 195.99;
12. Ron Tornow, Buell, 6.908, 193.43;
13. Kelly Clontz, Suzuki, 6.925, 192.91;
14. John Hall, Buell, 6.929, 194.16;
15. Mark Paquette, Buell, 6.935, 192.00;
16. Ryan Oehler, Buell, 6.958, 194.38.
Not Qualified:
17. Joey Gladstone, 6.994, 193.54;
18. Jim Underdahl, 7.008, 190.92;
19. Anthony Vanetti, 7.101, 187.94;
20. Maurice Allen, 7.110, 188.04;
21. Steve Johnson, 8.024, 121.08;
22. Angie Smith, no time, no speed. 


John Davison

Long-time RIS staffer, beginning in the mid-80s. Charlotte, NC area local contact.

Read More on Drag Racing news
Volume 2018, Issue 10, Posted 11:46 PM, 10.12.2018