Pritchett, Hagan, Coughlin, Jr., M. Smith lead Pomona NHRA qualifying

Matt Hagan

Fresh off two straight wins and still in championship contention, Matt Hagan kept his hot streak going by racing to the provisional No. 1 spot in Funny Car during qualifying on Friday at the 55th annual Auto Club NHRA Finals.

Leah Pritchett (Top Fuel), Jeg Coughlin Jr. (Pro Stock) and Matt Smith (Pro Stock Motorcycle) are also provisional No. 1 qualifiers in their respective categories at the last of six races in the 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship playoffs. The race also serves as the finale of the 24-race 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season.
Hagan made the quickest run in both qualifying sessions, including a top pass of 3.872-seconds at 333.58 mph in his MOPAR Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody to close out the final session on Friday. It gave the two-time world champ eight qualifying bonus points, pulling him closer to points leader Robert Hight. Hagan, a two-time world champ who is racing for his second No. 1 qualifier this season and 35th of his career, entered the weekend 56 points back of Hight, but appears set on make things interesting.

Looking to end her season on a good note, Pritchett powered to the front in Top Fuel with a 3.694 at 322.88 in her MOPAR Dodge dragster. If it holds, Pritchett would earn her second straight No. 1 qualifier to end the season. Mike Salinas is second with a 3.699 at 327.11, while Billy Torrence, who was 86 points back of his son, points leader Steve Torrence, entering the weekend, is third after his 3.708 at 330.63.
Pro Stock’s Coughlin went to the top spot after posting a 6.533 at 210.70 in his JEGS.com Chevrolet Camaro. He’s after his third No. 1 qualifier this season and 32nd in his career, and is also trying to track down Elite Motorsports teammate Erica Enders on the final weekend of the year. Defending Pro Stock Motorcycle world champ Smith kept up his impressive pace in qualifying, taking the provisional top spot on his Denso Auto Parts/Stockseth/MSR EBR with a 6.815 at 197.33. If it holds, it would give Smith his third straight No. 1 qualifier and fourth in the last five playoff races.
Qualifying continues Saturday at the Auto Club NHRA Finals at 12:15 p.m. PT.

Friday's results after the first two of four rounds of qualifying for the 55th annual Auto Club NHRA Finals at Auto Club Raceway at Pomona, final of 24 events in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series. Qualifying will continue Saturday for Sunday's final eliminations.

Top Fuel — 1. Leah Pritchett, 3.694 seconds, 322.88 mph; 2. Mike Salinas, 3.699, 327.11; 3. Billy Torrence, 3.708, 330.63; 4. Jordan Vandergriff, 3.724, 323.81; 5. Brittany Force, 3.726, 331.69; 6. Antron Brown, 3.729, 330.07; 7. Richie Crampton, 3.751, 325.45; 8. Scott Palmer, 3.775, 328.14; 9. Justin Ashley, 3.777, 317.49; 10. Doug Kalitta, 3.903, 325.61; 11. Cameron Ferre, 3.955, 301.81; 12. Shawn Reed, 3.966, 292.46; 13. Steve Torrence, 3.985, 223.95; 14. Jim Maroney, 4.367, 190.81; 15. Cory McClenathan, 6.321, 97.67; 16. Austin Prock, 6.636, 91.89. Not Qualified: 17. Terry McMillen, 6.752, 97.96; 18. Clay Millican, 6.960, 85.81.
Funny Car — 1. Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger, 3.872, 333.58; 2. Tim Wilkerson, Ford Mustang, 3.876, 327.43; 3. Shawn Langdon, Toyota Camry, 3.893, 330.80; 4. Tommy Johnson Jr., Charger, 3.945, 319.82; 5. Jack Beckman, Charger, 3.949, 326.16; 6. Cruz Pedregon, Charger, 3.967, 320.28; 7. Blake Alexander, Mustang, 4.017, 304.74; 8. Jeff Arend, Chevy Monte Carlo, 4.099, 278.69; 9. Steven Densham, Mustang, 4.129, 289.57; 10. John Force, Chevy Camaro, 4.185, 292.65; 11. Ron Capps, Charger, 4.229, 219.76; 12. Robert Hight, Camaro, 4.354, 306.05; 13. Paul Lee, Charger, 4.491, 185.64; 14. J.R. Todd, Camry, 6.020, 112.21; 15. Terry Haddock, Mustang, 6.085, 111.87; 16. Bob Tasca III, Mustang, 6.117, 109.91. Not Qualified: 17. Jonnie Lindberg, 7.377, 81.26; 18. Jim Campbell, 8.051, 83.37.
Pro Stock — 1. Jeg Coughlin, Chevy Camaro, 6.533, 210.70; 2. Erica Enders, Camaro, 6.538, 210.93; 3. Jason Line, Camaro, 6.554, 211.03; 4. Bo Butner, Camaro, 6.557, 210.83; 5. Alex Laughlin, Camaro, 6.565, 210.70; 6. Fernando Cuadra, Camaro, 6.565, 208.68; 7. Deric Kramer, Camaro, 6.569, 209.52; 8. Kenny Delco, Camaro, 6.576, 210.47; 9. Matt Hartford, Camaro, 6.585, 210.44; 10. Aaron Stanfield, Camaro, 6.590, 210.08; 11. Chris McGaha, Camaro, 6.595, 209.95; 12. Steve Graham, Camaro, 6.600, 209.39; 13. Val Smeland, Camaro, 6.631, 209.43; 14. Shane Tucker, Camaro, 6.638, 208.81; 15. Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.646, 187.73; 16. Joey Grose, Camaro, 6.687, 207.72. Not Qualified: 17. Cristian Cuadra, 6.778, 175.27; 18. Fernando Cuadra Jr., 6.836, 205.63; 19. Richie Stevens, 7.068, 197.10.
Pro Stock Motorcycle — 1. Matt Smith, EBR, 6.815, 197.33; 2. Karen Stoffer, Suzuki, 6.834, 195.00; 3. Jerry Savoie, Suzuki, 6.837, 193.35; 4. Andrew Hines, Harley-Davidson, 6.845, 196.22; 5. Hector Arana Jr, EBR, 6.867, 196.36; 6. Scotty Pollacheck, EBR, 6.873, 196.39; 7. Angelle Sampey, Harley-Davidson, 6.882, 194.02; 8. Eddie Krawiec, Harley-Davidson, 6.894, 195.22; 9. Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 6.897, 193.74; 10. Hector Arana, EBR, 6.913, 196.47; 11. Ryan Oehler, EBR, 6.937, 196.64; 12. Angie Smith, EBR, 7.010, 194.13; 13. Kelly Clontz, Suzuki, 7.010, 191.78; 14. Michael Ray, Victory, 7.023, 191.02; 15. Katie Sullivan, Suzuki, 7.043, 189.28; 16. Freddie Camarena, Suzuki, 7.061, 189.76. Not Qualified: 17. Jianna Salinas, 7.842, 125.79; 18. Andie Rawlings, 9.463, 93.70.

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