It is safe to say, Mike Salinas is on cloud nine.
In less than a year, Salinas has gone from Top Fuel afterthought to championship contender, collecting his first final, first win and first No. 1 qualifier all in the span of 12 months. Now, with all of the firsts out of the way, it is time for Salinas to start adding to his numbers.
With two top qualifier awards already this year, Salinas made a strong case for a third with the quickest pass of the evening Friday at the Route 66 NHRA Nationals at Route 66 Raceway.
Salinas rocketed to the top of the charts in the second session Friday in Chicago, blasting by previous top qualifier Steve Torrence and others to lead the class with a 3.693-second pass at 328.30 mph in the Scrappers Racing dragster.
Antron Brown qualified second with a 3.753 at 320.74 mph, while Torrence, who was quickest in session one, is third with a 3.757 at 322.34 mph. Doug Kalitta (3.764) and Austin Prock (3.769) round out the top five.
In all, 21 dragsters made a pass on Friday equalling the largest Top Fuel field all season.
If his time holds, it will be his fourth career top qualifier award and third in the past six races.
— Competition Plus (@competitionplus) January 4, 2019