Austin Prock and the Montana Brand / Rocky Mountain Twist Top Fuel dragster team are making their way to the Virginia NHRA Nationals, the eighth event on the 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season schedule, sitting inside the top 10 of the NHRA Mello Yello points standings.
In a close side-by-side race during the first round of the recent NHRA Southern Nationals, Prock and the Montana Brand / Rocky Mountain Twist team laid down a 3.849-second pass at 321.42 mph that was only narrowly bettered by three-thousandths of a second. The strong first round effort came after Prock made a move from the 15th qualifying position to 11th during a rain hindered two days of qualifying that only allowed a single try in each lane. Although it was his fourth first-round exit, Prock has continued to boost his rookie resume. The first-year driver has three second-round finishes and a career-best elapsed time of 3.699-seconds and speed of 334.15 mph.
“Every time I go down the race track, I’m learning new things and trying to improve my skill set. That first round in Atlanta was a tough loss for this Montana Brand / Rocky Mountain Twist team. We were close, it was a solid side-by-side race but we just couldn’t get the job done,” said Prock. “We’ve had a weekend off to get things back on track and I’m in the mindset to go out there and go some rounds in Richmond.”
Like teammate Brittany Force, Prock’s first visit to Virginia Motorsports Park outside of Richmond, Va., was last year, but as a crew member. This year, Prock will be in the driver’s seat eyeing to take home the Wally for his first NHRA Mello Yello career win.
“I’m looking forward to a get-healthy, turnaround weekend in Richmond,” Prock said. “We fell short to an extremely close drag race in Atlanta and we’re hoping to get on the other side of that this weekend. The track surface is beautiful in Richmond, and we’re hoping we can lay down some great numbers to get us in the top half of the field. I’ll be as ready as ever.”
Coming into Virginia, Prock will have a new crew chief leading his Montana Brand / Rocky Mountain Twist dragster crew. Mike Green joined the John Force Racing family over the off weekend. Green is a two-time world champion crew chief with 27 event wins under his belt.
Qualifying for the Virginia NHRA Nationals begins Friday at 2:30 p.m. and 5:45 p.m. and Saturday at 1:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. Eliminations start at 12 p.m. Catch the action on FS1 Friday from 10:30 to 11:30 p.m., Saturday from 1:30 a.m. to 3:00 a.m. and Sunday from 7:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.