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Drag Racing Story of the Day!

McClenathan, Johnson, Coughlin
and Gann Lead Qualifying in Atlanta 

By NHRA Communications

COMMERCE, Ga. - Cory McClenathan led Top Fuel qualifying Friday at the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals at Atlanta Dragway.

Tommy Johnson Jr., Jeg Coughlin Jr. and Shawn Gann also led their respective categories at the $1.4 million race, the seventh of 23 races in the $50 million NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series.

NHRA competitors were only able to complete one of two scheduled qualifying sessions. NHRA officials canceled the second qualifying session due to heavy rain.

McClenathan blasted his NY Yankee/Berryman dragster to the finish line in 4.607 seconds at 318.32 mph for the top spot after the first day of qualifying.

"We're just looking to go from point A-to-B on that run," McClenathan said. "In the past on hot, sticky tracks, this car has run well. I don't know if we expected it to run that well but we're happy. We didn't hurt anything, which is always good. You've got to give it to Stewy (crew chief John Stewart) and the guys for giving me a good car."

Johnson powered his Skoal Racing Chevy Camaro down the quarter-mile track in 4.917 at 309.13 to lead all Funny Car competitors.

"I have yet to qualify at this event in Funny Car so getting a run like that on the first attempt is a relief," said Johnson. "The track looked a little tricky and we set it up conservatively but Mike (Green, crew chief) made a few little changes in the staging lanes before the run. 

"It was a nice smooth pass. There's definitely a ton left in the tune-up. We'll see what the racetrack allows. I don't think that number will hold the No. 1 spot but I'm pretty confident about our tune-up for Sunday because we expect similar conditions."

Defending NHRA POWERade champion Coughlin shut the clocks off in his Jeg's Mail Order Chevy Cavalier in 6.897 at 199.40 to lead the 16-car Pro Stock field. Greg Anderson is in the No. 2 spot and current POWERade points leader Kurt Johnson is third.

Gann rode his Suzuki to the top of the Pro Stock Bike field with his pass of 7.239 at a track record speed of 190.73. He was followed in the order by fellow Suzuki rider Geno Scali while Andrew Hines rode the Vance & Hines Harley Davidson V-Rod to the No. 3 spot.

Qualifying continues Saturday at 10 a.m.

COMMERCE, Ga. - Friday's qualifying results for the 23rd annual Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals presented by Pontiac at Atlanta Dragway, seventh of 23 events in the $50 million NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series.

TOP FUEL

1. Cory McClenathan, 4.607 seconds, 318.32 mph; 2. Larry Dixon, 4.644, 322.50; 3. Darrell Russell, 4.644, 316.52; 4. Doug Herbert, 4.665, 295.53; 5. Brandon Bernstein, 4.670, 316.23; 6. Tony Schumacher, 4.742, 316.30; 7. Chris Vandergriff, 4.801, 288.46; 8. Rhonda Hartman-Smith, 4.805, 295.40; 9. Josh Starcher, 4.873, 294.88; 10. Luigi Novelli, 4.895, 270.59; 11. Don Garlits, 4.943, 271.19; 12. John Smith, 5.016, 246.84; 13. David Baca, 5.107, 208.46; 14. Clay Millican, 5.455, 176.44; 15. Scott Palmer, 6.350, 142.88; 16. Don Lampus, 6.906, 120.69. 

FUNNY CAR

1. Tommy Johnson Jr., Chevy Camaro, 4.917, 309.13; 2. Tony Pedregon, Ford Mustang, 4.924, 307.02; 3. John Force, Mustang, 4.940, 303.78; 4. Whit Bazemore, Dodge Stratus, 4.985, 304.80; 5. Tim Wilkerson, Pontiac Firebird, 5.090, 251.34; 6. Del Worsham, Firebird, 5.107, 296.44; 7. Johnny Gray, Firebird, 5.114, 296.63; 8. Bob Gilbertson, Firebird, 5.116, 278.00; 9. Gary Densham, Mustang, 5.254, 251.34; 10. Jack Wyatt, Firebird, 5.281, 261.83; 11. Ron Capps, Camaro, 5.363, 206.86; 12. Cruz Pedregon, Firebird, 5.743, 184.70; 13. Frank Pedregon, Firebird, 7.246, 115.30; 14. Dale Creasy Jr., Firebird, 7.468, 115.35; 15. Dean Skuza, Firebird, 9.260, 92.67; 16. Gary Scelzi, Stratus, 9.269, 89.76. 

PRO STOCK

1. Jeg Coughlin, Chevy Cavalier, 6.897, 199.40; 2. Greg Anderson, Pontiac Grand Am, 6.901, 201.16; 3. Kurt Johnson, Cavalier, 6.908, 200.89; 4. Mark Pawuk, Grand Am, 6.925, 199.79; 5. Bruce Allen, Grand Am, 6.925, 198.79; 6. Taylor Lastor, Cavalier, 6.934, 199.37; 7. Ron Krisher, Cavalier, 6.936, 199.11; 8. Warren Johnson, Grand Am, 6.936, 199.02; 9. Scott Geoffrion, Ford Escort, 6.939, 199.55; 10. Allen Johnson, Dodge Stratus, 6.943, 200.05; 11. Jim Yates, Grand Am, 6.944, 198.61; 12. Mark Whisnant, Cavalier, 6.950, 198.38; 13. George Marnell, Grand Am, 6.956, 199.40; 14. Mike Edwards, Grand Am, 6.962, 198.67; 15. Terry Adams, Cavalier, 6.967, 196.47; 16. JR Carr, Cavalier, 6.970, 198.15. 

NHRA Communications

 

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