Brittany Force (Top Fuel), Matt Hagan (Funny Car) and Greg Anderson (Pro Stock) took provisional qualifying leads in their respective categories under the lights Friday evening at the 31st annual NHRA SpringNationals at Royal Purple Raceway, the fifth of 24 events on the 2018 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series schedule.
Force leads the Top Fuel class with a run of 3.701 at 313.80 in her Monster Energy dragster posted during the second qualifying session. The defending Top Fuel champion is seeking her first No. 1 qualifier of the season in her new car after wrecking at Pomona earlier this year.
“It’s been pretty much a whirlwind of a season,” Force stated. “We’ve been running our 2017 car the last few races while we built this new dragster. This was our testing and none of us knew how it was going to go. To come out second run and be able to go number one is pretty amazing.”
Tony Schumacher is currently qualified second with a 3.711 at 322.73 in his U.S. Army dragster and Billy Torrence rounds out the top three.
Hagan sits atop the Funny Car category with a run of 3.913 seconds at 308.78 mph in his Pennzoil/Mopar Dodge Charger R/T. He’s chasing the top position as he aims for his second No. 1 qualifier of the 2018 campaign and 32nd of his career.
“Really happy with my guys right now,” Hagan said. “They laid down some great runs and the car has been phenomenal. I’m very confident in what they’re doing. It helps me as a driver to allow me to do what I need to do.”
Defending world champion Robert Hight sits second after a 3.921 at 313.15 in his Auto Club of Southern California Chevrolet Camaro, while Jonnie Lindberg is third.
In Pro Stock, Anderson currently holds the top spot after resetting both ends of the track record with a pass of 6.492 at 213.00 in his Summit Racing Equipment Chevrolet Camaro during his first round of qualifying. He is looking for his third consecutive and 96th career No. 1 qualifying position after earning top spots in Gainesville and Las Vegas.
“You don’t get conditions like this but maybe once or twice a year,” Anderson said. “Great day for me. Not only once but twice. We’ve got a great car over there and we’ll go faster tomorrow.”
Jeg Coughlin Jr. is currently qualified in the second spot with a 6.504 at 212.36 as he hopes to capitalize on the momentum he found last year as the No. 1 qualifier.
Qualifying continues at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday.