KENT, Wash. (Aug. 3, 2013) – Antron Brown and the Matco Tools team accomplished their primary goal in qualifying for Sunday’s championship eliminations of the NHRA Northwest Nationals at Pacific Raceways near Seattle.
The team wanted to at least qualify in the top half of the 16-car field so crew chiefs Brian Corradi and Mark Oswald had their choice of which lane to put Brown for the opening round at 11 a.m. (PT).
After losing both qualifying sessions to rain on Friday, Don Schumacher Racing’s Matco team finished qualifying with a time of 3.799 seconds at 315.42 mph to earn the No. 6 qualifying position and an opening-round date with Bob Vandergriff.
“We only had two runs, so we had a game plan,” Brown said. “Mark, Brian and all the boys, we were focused on different things, we were just changing stuff back and forth to make things right in our bell housing and clutch department.
“The first run (3.880) we knew was going to be a test lap, and we just wanted to see where we were and then make adjustments. It did exactly what we wanted it to do, and then the next run was a lot better. We were hoping for more, but we know we can make it better.
“All in all, it was a great two runs and we qualified sixth. We wanted to be in the top-three, but we’re in a good position to go racing, so we feel good about that. That last run was a great one to work off tomorrow.”
Rain on Friday afternoon cancelled the first two qualifying sessions marking the fifth Mello Yello Series event this year when a total of nine runs were lost to inclement weather.
The following are Brown’s qualifying results and notes from Pacific Raceways:
TOP FUEL DRAGSTER
No. 1 qualifier: Shawn Langdon (Al-Anabi Racing) 3.765 sec.*, 320.58 mph (*track record)
Antron Brown, Matco Tools
Qualified: No. 6
First-round opponent: Bob Vandergriff
Both sessions rained out
Session 1: 3.880 sec., 308.85 mph
Session 2: 3.799, 315.42
On ESPN2 (All times ET)
Saturday:10:30 p.m., qualifying
Sunday: 7 p.m., eliminations
Rain washed out both of Friday’s qualifying sessions at Pacific Raceways near Seattle and marked the fifth of 16 Mello Yello events this season that weather cut short opportunities for pro teams had to qualify.
Nine out of 64 qualifying sessions this year have been lost that have cost teams 16 percent of their qualifying runs.
It is the first time since 2007 that an entire qualifying session was lost to rain at Pacific Raceways.
NHRA NORTHWEST NATIONALS SCHEDULE
Sunday: 11 a.m., championship eliminations
WEATHER.COM FORECAST FOR KENT, WASH.
Sunday: High 84; 0 percent chance of rain
About Matco Tools
Matco Tools manufactures, distributes and services premium quality automotive equipment, tools and tool storage for the professional technician. The company has more than 60 years of national brand experience in the automotive equipment industry and a vast product line of more than 13,000 of the highest quality, innovative tools and accessories. The company’s franchise offering has been ranked as the #1 tools distribution franchise for five of the past seven years by Entrepreneur Magazine. Initial corporate and ongoing local training create and build outstanding value for the franchisee’s business. For more information on Matco Tools products or franchise opportunities, visit www.matcotools.com.
About Don Schumacher Racing
Don Schumacher Racing, headquartered in Brownsburg, Ind., fields seven professional teams in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series. In Top Fuel, the 2012 NHRA Top Fuel world champion Matco Tools dragster driven by Antron Brown and the U.S. Army dragster driven by seven-time world champion Tony Schumacher and the Battery Extender Powered by Schumacher dragster driven by Spencer Massey; and in Funny Car, 2012 NHRA world champion Jack Beckman in the Valvoline Max Life/MTS Mail for Wounded Warriors Dodge Charger R/T, 2011 world champion Matt Hagan in the Magneti Marelli Offered by Mopar/Rocky Boots Dodge, the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge of Ron Capps and the Pitch Energy Dodge of Johnny Gray.
DSR has won 213 NHRA national event titles and 11 world championships.