EPPING, NH –Toyota driver Antron Brown advanced to the Top Fuel finals before eventually falling to Steve Torrence at the NHRA New England Nationals in front of a sell-out crowd for the second consecutive day at the New England Dragway in Epping, New Hampshire, Sunday.
The final round was the first of the season for the three-time world champion as he ran a gauntlet of top drivers today. He defeated Clay Millican in round one, then knocked off reigning world champion Brittany Force in the second round with his best pass of the weekend – a 3.923-second run. That set up a semi-final against Don Schumacher Racing teammate and pole-sitter Leah Pritchett. Brown had a decided advantage at the tree (.058 to .071) on the way to winning on a hole-shot, 3.955-3.945.
In the final, Brown and Torrence left the light almost simultaneously, but Torrence was able to pull away to the victory, 3.909 to 3.948. Brown’s three best passes of the weekend came on his final three runs on Sunday.
EPPING, NH – Shawn Langdon qualified third in Funny Car to lead Toyota in front of a sell-out crowd at the New England Dragway in preparation for Sunday’s NHRA New England Nationals in Epping, New Hampshire.
The third-place showing marks Langdon’s best Funny Car qualifying effort since moving over from Top Fuel after last season. He had previously qualified fourth at Gainesville. Langdon will square off with Jim Campbell in Sunday’s opening round.
“We had a great test at Norwalk last week,” said Langdon, the 2013 Top Fuel world champion. “We learned a lot with our Global Electronic Technology Toyota Camry. I’m still learning in the Funny Car and there’s a lot more to come, but hopefully we’re starting to turn the corner.”
NORWALK, OH – J.R. Todd continued his strong recent run, driving his DHL Toyota Camry to the Funny Car semi-finals as the top Toyota at the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals at the Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park, Sunday. It’s the third consecutive week that he has advanced to the semi-finals and the sixth time in the last nine races, including a pair of victories.
Todd opened his day with a victory over Bob Tasca and then knocked off Jack Beckman in the second round to advance to the semi-finals. He ran a strong 4.031-second pass, but it wasn’t enough to move past eventual race winner Matt Hagan.
“It’s not the end result we wanted for this DHL/WIX Filters Toyota team, but it was a good day for points,” said Todd, who closed to within 21 points of second-place. “We are making up ground on the cars in front of us, and hopefully we can keep moving forward.”
NORWALK, OH –Antron Brown qualified fifth in Top Fuel, while J.R. Todd was seventh in Funny Car to lead Toyota in the rain-shortened qualifying for Sunday’s Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals at the Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio. Rain canceled one session on both Friday and Saturday.
Brown qualified fifth in both of the weekend’s sessions with a top time of 3.805 seconds. It marks the second straight race that he’s qualified in the top five. The three-time world champion will open up Sunday’s eliminations against Blake Alexander.
Doug Kalitta qualified ninth and will face Leah Pritchett, while teammate Richie Crampton was tenth and squares off with Pat Dakin the opening round.
In Funny Car, Todd ran a 4.044-second pass at 315.27 mph to earn the seventh position. He’s scheduled to race Bob Tasca in the first round.
Todd Keeps Climbing… J.R. Todd continues to work his way up the NHRA Funny Car point standings. After advancing to the semi-finals last week at Bristol, the DHL Camry driver moved into fourth place – 42 points out of second. In just his second year in Funny Cars, Todd has advanced to the semi-finals or beyond five times in the last eight races, including wins at Las Vegas and Houston. Over the last 21 races, Todd is tied for the most wins (four) in Funny Car with Courtney Force and Robert Hight.
Brown Regaining Form… Three-time Top Fuel world champion Antron Brown’sToyota team continues to round into form after a number of off-season changes. After advancing to the semi-finals at Richmond, Brown qualified third at Bristol and then registered the quickest pass of any driver on race day.
BRISTOL, TN – J.R. Todd drove his DHL Toyota Camry to the Funny Car semi-finals to lead Toyota at the Fitzgerald USA NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals at the Bristol Dragway Sunday. It was the fifth time in the last eight races that Todd has advanced to the semi-finals or beyond.
Todd defeated fellow Toyota driver Del Worsham in the opening round and then knocked off Jack Beckman in round two to set up a semi-final match-up with Ron Capps. Todd had the advantage at the light with a .034 reaction time, but dropped a cylinder at the 100’ mark, giving Capps the win.
“It was just a matter of going down the track today,” said Todd, as air temperatures soared into the 90s. “In the semis, I just dropped a hole right after I hit the gas and you’re a sitting duck at that point. It’s good to be going rounds and earning points in our DHL Camry, but it would be nice to be going even more rounds and earning more points on the cars in front of us. It’s going to be hot in Norwalk, but they have a brand new circuit. I’m sure it’s going to be tricky.”
BRISTOL, TN – J.R. Todd qualified second in Funny Car, while Antron Brown placed third in Top Fuel to lead Toyota in preparation for Sunday’s Fitzgerald USA NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals at the Bristol Dragway.
In qualifying second, Todd matched a career Funny Car-best originally set at Charlotte in September 2017. It also marks the fourth time he’s qualified in the top four in the last six races. For the season, he’s now earned qualifying bonus points in 10 off 11 races.
“I’m not sure that lane choice is going to matter with the heat tomorrow, but it’s good to have it,” said Todd, who will match up with Del Worsham in the first round tomorrow. “You always want to be up as high as possible on the ladder. It makes that Friday night run even more important and it was key that we capitalized on it. We’ve really stepped it up in qualifying and it’s just a combination of our entire DHL Camry team working hard on the tune-up, being consistent and not making a lot of changes.”
Cruz Pedregon also placed in the top five in Funny Car with a fifth in his Snap-on Camry and will square off with Jim Campbell in round one tomorrow. Pedregon has now qualified in the top five in four of his last five races.