NHRA Epping Post-Race Recap
- Antron Brown maintained his No. 2 ranking on the Top Fuel leaderboard
Qualified: No. 6 (3.792 E.T. at 323.89 MPH)
E1: 3.773 E.T. at 324.98 MPH defeated Brittany Force 3.843 E.T. at 319.07 MPH
E2: 3.850 E.T. at 319.22 MPH defeated by Billy Torrence 3.837 E.T. at 326.79 MPH
The 2021 Matco Tools paint scheme made its competition debut at the NHRA New England Nationals, and three-time Epping finalist Antron Brown qualified his new-look machine sixth on the strength of his 3.792-second Q3 pass. Brown drew Brittany Force as his round-one competitor, and the former world champions were the first two drivers to take to the track on Sunday morning. Against Force, Brown was first out of the gate and posted his best run of the weekend to defeat his opponent and capture the first win light of race day. In round two, Brown squared off with Billy Torrence. Both Brown and Torrence were nearly even launching off of the starting line with Brown claiming the early lead. Their machines kept pace until the eighth-mile marker when Torrence pulled ahead to claim the narrow victory.
“We have a lot of confidence. This Matco Tools car is running so consistently for Toyota and TRD and Global Electronic Technology and Hangsterfers and everybody out here who supports us. We’re working on fine-tuning this thing and we didn’t try to slow the car down that much in round two, but it did; it just slowed down too much. I staged safe and shallow, and was waiting for Billy Torrence and I wanted to get him on the tree, but I still didn’t have the light I wanted. I can be better than a .70 light. We got through a tough first round and we just really wanted to get past that second round to have a Bye into the finals. We’ll take our licks and bruises today and we’re looking forward to getting to Norwalk. We have a week off to regroup. It’s going to start getting hot during the summer and we want to get better. We’ll be there in those final rounds soon, contending for those race wins.”