Qualified: No. 7 (3.731 E.T. at 329.34 MPH)
E1: 5.755 E.T. at 121.47 MPH defeated by Leah Pruett 3.930 E.T. at 279.44 MPH
Three-time NHRA Top Fuel world champion Antron Brown began his campaign for a fourth series title by qualifying the Matco Tools Toyota seventh at the first of seven Countdown to the Championship playoff races to set up a Sunday morning battle with DSR stablemate, Leah Pruett. Against Pruett, Brown clinched the starting line advantage but his machine lost traction by the 330-foot mark. Pruett also encountered problems but was further down the track when her dragster started to haze the tires and she was able to hang on for the round win.
Brown leaves Reading, Penn. ranked sixth in the Top Fuel standings, but won’t have to wait long to avenge his E1 loss as the NHRA returns to competition next weekend for the Carolina Nationals in Concord, N.C., beginning on Friday, September 17th.
“This was not the race we wanted to start the Countdown. We came here to win this race. We’re looking at the positives and we made some good gains with this Matco Tools car this weekend. We’re looking forward to getting to Charlotte, and continuing down this road we’re on. Our main goal is to qualify in the top three, that’s what we’re shooting for and then get after it on race day. The good thing is that we only have to wait a few days to get back on the track and we’re hungry.”