Courtney Force powered to the top of the Funny Car class at Friday’s NHRA Nitro Spring Training at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park located outside of Phoenix. The 2018 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series returns to this facility for the NHRA Arizona Nationals Feb. 23 -25 for the second event of the series.
Force drove her Advance Auto Parts Chevrolet Camaro SS to a pass of 3.839-seconds at 329.99 mph. She is seeking to capitalize on her career-best seven No. 1 qualifiers last season. Two-time world champion Matt Hagan made a pass of 3.851 at 330.72 in his Mopar Express Dodge Charger R/T and teammate Tommy Johnson Jr. ran a 3.884 at 326.16.
“This is a new chassis we’re out here running,” Force said. “This team has been doing an amazing job. We’ve got a couple new guys with Brian Corradi and Dan Hood tuning it. We’ve been taking it slow, but we’re going to see if we can get our car running the same kind of numbers.”
Shawn Langdon is brand new to the Funny Car class in his Global Electronic Technology Toyota Camry and ran it to a 3.911 at 324.05. He got his license in October of 2017 and is already showing to be competitive with the veterans.
“It’s been a big transition for me,” Langdon said. “Everything I learned driving a Top Fuel dragster I take about 50-percent of that and throw it out the window. I’m excited for the challenge. I haven’t hit anything yet so that’s a positive.”
Doug Kalitta leads the Top Fuel class with a pass of 3.688 at 331.12 in his Mac Tools dragster. Finishing the 2017 season third overall in points, Kalitta is preparing for an even better 2018. Current Top Fuel world champion Brittany Force is second with a pass of 3.699 at 323.35.
In Pro Stock, Alex Laughlin drove his Gas Monkey Energy Chevrolet Camaro to a pass of 6.484 at 210.11 and teammate Erica Enders ran a 6.563 at 208.30 in her Melling Performance / Elite Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro.
Testing will continue Saturday morning at 8 a.m. at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park.