J.R. Todd drove his DHL Toyota Camry to a 3.886-second pass at 325.85 mph to qualify second in Funny Car and lead Toyota in preparation for Sunday’s Magic Dry Organic Absorbent NHRA Northwest Nationalsat Pacific Raceways.
Todd, the reigning Funny Car champion, now has qualified in the top two three times over the last seven races. By placing third in the opening session and then second in Friday night’s run, Todd earned three bonus points for the weekend.
“We had some really good runs on Friday – the ones we’ve been looking for the past few races,” said Todd, who will take on Jeff Diehl in Sunday’s opening round. “The way the car ran on Friday, it was really a product of what we did in Monday testing in Norwalk. It’s a good sign going into the rest of the season. We need to capitalize on moments like that. We followed up with two good runs today. Now we need to take advantage of it and make four good runs tomorrow.”
Todd’s Kalitta Motorsports Camry teammate, Shawn Langdon, also had a strong effort in qualifying, placing sixth with a 3.898-second run at 328.30 mph. Langdon will look to extend his streak of winning at least one round to six tomorrow when he matches up with Cruz Pedregon in round one.
In Top Fuel, it was Richie Crampton leading the way for the Toyota contingent as he qualified sixth overall after running a 3.740 at 326.79 mph. Crampton will match up with fellow Toyota driver Antron Brown in the first round of eliminations after Brown qualified 11th.
The three-time world champ registered three solid runs over the weekend, but unfortunately, the one run he didn’t get down the track was Friday night’s session, which determined most of the field. It marks the third time that Brown has qualified 11th this season and in each of the two previous occasions he advanced to the finals.
Doug Kalitta qualified eighth and will face ninth-seeded Scott Palmer on Sunday. Kalitta has already put his names in the record books this weekend by competing in his 505th Top Fuel race, breaking the tie between he and Tony Schumacher.
Sunday’s Mello Yello Drag Racing Series eliminations will be televised live on FOX beginning at 4:00 p.m. (EDT).
|Toyota Drivers||Northwest Nationals Qualifying Starting position (1st Rd. Opponent)|
|J.R. Todd||2nd (Diehl)|
|Shawn Langdon||6th (Pedregon)|
|Jeff Diehl||15th (Todd)|
|Doug Kalitta||8th (Palmer)|
|Antron Brown||11th (Crampton)|
Toyota Session-by-Session Qualifying
|Funny Car||Q1 Time/Speed||Q2 Time/Speed||Q3 Time/Speed||Q4 Time/Speed|
|J.R. Todd||3.911/325.77 (1)||3.886/325.85 (2)||4.024/290.88||3.971/323.66|
|Jeff Diehl||7.006/97.61||No run||4.224/265.64||No run|
(#) – Bonus Points Earned
Bold= Driver’s quickest pass during qualifying
Toyota Racing PR