Leah Pritchett leads the Top Fuel class after day one of qualifying at the Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals in suburban Denver. Pritchett powered her Mopar Dodge 1320 Top Fuel dragster to a 3.806-second at 317.19-mph run under the lights in Q2, propelling to the top of the stacked class.
Prior to her blistering Q2 pass, Pritchett scored the second-best run of the opening session, posting a 3.970 E.T. at 310.34-mph.
With two more nighttime qualifying sessions scheduled for Saturday, Pritchett knows the Top Fuel field could still shift significantly but feels confident in her Todd Okuhara-led Mopar Dodge team and their ability to retain the No. 1 position in the challenging mile-high conditions.
“I wouldn’t be here without Todd Okuhara, Joe Barlam and this entire Mopar Dodge team,” said the returning Dodge Mile-High Nationals runner-up who came close to sealing the deal after starting from the No. 1 position in 2017.
“The hill, the mountain, it’s challenging, but this team they’re good at that. Can’t say enough about them. They took an educated guess in Q1 and really picked at it for Q2 and this is what we got.”
“Overall, man that Angry Bee, she stuck, she was going down that run, it felt amazing. I knew all the way that we had all eight (cylinders) lit. I got to the finish line, and it was definitely hunting for some more juice for sure. There’s more to be had tomorrow night, and I’m excited for it.”
“This is Mopar nation, and we’re glad to be No. 1 tonight in Denver,” added Pritchett.
“This is a huge weekend for us you might as well put it up there with the U.S. Nationals. For all of Don Schumacher Racing, Dodge and Mopar, all the bigwigs in the house today, it’s been incredible. What’s exciting is, coming here to Bandimere, kicking it off with the (Mopar Big Block) party, and the fans, this vibe is like none other.”
The Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals provisional No. 1 qualifier is seeking her second consecutive Bandimere Speedway Top Fuel pole, and 10th of her career going into Saturday.
Q1: 3.970 E.T. at 310.34 MPH (Two bonus points for second quickest run of the session)
Q2: 3.806 E.T. at 317.19 MPH (Three bonus points for quickest run of the session)
Provisional Qualifying Position: No. 1
Bonus Points: Five
DSR PR/Photo Credit NHRA Media