No Top Fuel driver has ever done what Brittany Force did during qualifying at the NHRA FallNationals at the Texas Motorplex Friday.
Force clocked a 3.651-second pass at 331.28 mph in the night session to set both ends of the track record and snare the provisional No. 1 qualifying spot.
“That was an awesome run for this Advance Auto Parts team,” said Force, who won the 2017 Top Fuel world championship. “David Grubnic is known for going out Friday night and hitting that No. 1 spot. We did it, he told me we were going to do it; he was confident when we went to the line. He told me ‘we’re going to roll up there and steal that No. 1 spot so hang on.’
“That run was very important, earned us three bonus points. We’re chasing that points lead and it’s not out of our reach. (Saturday) is going to be really important for race day. What we are looking at, more than a No. 1 qualifier, is winning on race day. That will start (Saturday), how we run (Saturday), if we get two consistent runs going into race day, we should be set up pretty good.”
If Force holds the No. 1 qualifying position it will be her eighth of the season and 18th of her career. Force arrived in Dallas third in the season point standings, 92 points behind leader and reigning world champion Steve Torrence.
“With this Advance Auto Parts team, every single one of these guys, I put all my faith in them. They are an incredible team and they just came on this season and we figured things out very soon in the year. Usually it takes time until you figure it out and find your routine and get rolling and we won in Houston, five races in, so I knew we were going to be good all season long. We have some success, but it has been since Houston since we won. We’ve come close many times, but that doesn’t cut it on our end.”
Force emphasized how important Sunday is to her team.
“Yes, we love No. 1 qualifiers, but I would rather win on race day,” Force. “(Doug) Kalitta and Steve (Torrence) are who we’re chasing right now and I’ve chased them down before. That’s our plan this season. We’re still a handful of points behind Steve in the No. 1 spot, but we’re not giving up yet.”