Qualified: No. 3 (3.724 E.T. at 326.71 MPH)
E1: 4.081 E.T. at 243.81 MPH defeated Buddy Hull 4.840 E.T. at 165.84 MPH
E2: 3.815 E.T. at 313.88 MPH defeated Shawn Langdon 4.308 E.T. at 192.44 MPH
E3: 3.813 E.T. at 321.19 MPH defeated by Steve Torrence 3.739 E.T. at 328.70 MPH
Antron Brown kicked off his 450th NHRA national event by driving the Matco Tools Toyota Top Fuel dragster to the second-quickest run of Friday’s lone qualifying session, which held up to be third best of qualifying. Starting from the ‘quick half’ of the field and with the advantage of lane choice, Brown powered past E1 opponent Buddy Hull to advance to round two where he drew Shawn Langdon as his quarterfinal competitor. Against Langdon, Brown used his machine-like reflexes to earn the holeshot advantage, and his stout 3.815-second pass led Langdon’s 4.308-second effort from start to finish. Brown’s semifinal appearance, his sixth in nine races, found him pitted against friend and Top Fuel point leader Steve Torrence. Once again, Brown was quick on the throttle to nab the starting line advantage, but his opponent had the difference made up by the time they drove past the starting tree and maintained his lead to the finish line.
“Sonoma was a good, productive race weekend. We started strong on Friday night and made some good moves on race day and went to the semifinals. Anytime you make it down to the final three or four cars, it’s a good weekend. The most important thing is that we’re moving forward and learning from every run. We’ll get ready for Pomona and get after it again in five days in So Cal.”