Crandall: Series Friday qualifying summary

Records fall on opening night of Amalie Oil Texas Nationals Litton first to top 300 on new track, Boychuk top qualifier in Top Fuel CRANDALL, Texas -- It was a night of firsts at the IHRA Amalie Oil Texas Nationals Friday night in ...

Records fall on opening night of Amalie Oil Texas Nationals

Litton first to top 300 on new track, Boychuk top qualifier in Top Fuel

CRANDALL, Texas -- It was a night of firsts at the IHRA Amalie Oil Texas Nationals Friday night in Crandall.

From the first competitive passes of each of IHRA's 10 racing categories to the first 300 mile per hour run, Dallas Raceway provided plenty of thrills in its opening night.

And highlighting it all was the first round of professional qualifying by the world's fastest cars -- IHRA Top Fuel.

After a bit of a slow start to the season, Edmonton, Alberta native Tim Boychuk showed why he was the hottest driver at the end of last season with the low E.T. Friday night to top Top Fuel qualifying and claim Friday's Last Man Standing with a 4.811 elapsed time at 296.96 miles per hour.

"Everything went really well tonight -- we finally have the car back. In Rockingham we found a few things with the fuel pump that weren't working correctly and we got them sorted out and of course I redlit so we couldn't tell how the car is. But tonight, we have the car back," Boychuk said.

And Boychuk, who won the final two races of last season, is ready to put his slow start behind him and start focusing on climbing back to the top.

"We had a lot of gremlins in the car that we didn't get rectified from last year, but we have worked through them. We're back," Boychuk said.

Scott Weis (Ashland, Va.), driving the Urs Ulrich dragster, was just behind Boychuk in second with a lap of 4.817 at 296.24 mph and Bruce Litton was third with a 4.867 second time.

Even without low E.T., Litton still put down a first in Dallas Raceway history with the first ever 300 mile per hour run at 300.20 mph.

Texas natives Mitch King (5.087, 279.32) and Todd Simpson (5.223, 218.19) rounded out the top five in Top Fuel.

Pro Modified was owned by Gilbert, S.C. native Ed Hoover who posted a solid 6.040 E.T. at 236.30 mph to take the Last Man Standing award and top the Pro Mod qualifying charts.

And he says he isn't done yet.

"We had it so laid back it wasn't funny," Hoover said. "We thought it was going to run a 6.20 with my tuneup in it because in my first run it got loose at 300 feet so naturally to get down the track you back it all the way down.

"Tonight the track turned around and was phenomenal and it was so backed down it ate the clutch out of it. Still, to run that fast we are sure we can get in the 5s tomorrow night if we do the right things."

Hoover had two solid laps during Friday's qualifying sessions, making him one to watch for this weekend.

"This place is coming around. Today it didn't have enough rubber for anybody to show off, but tonight it started getting a nice black groove and it is going to take some running, but by the end of the weekend it may be the fastest place we have been at," Hoover said.

Cedar Grove, N.J. native Chris Russo was second on a 6.169 E.T. at 233.72 mph while Dave Pierce was third with a 6.276 at 226.77 mph.

Harold Martin (6.305, 193.29) put together one of his finest laps in his new M4 to take fourth while Jason Stock (6.758, 166.99) was fifth.

In Elite Motorsports Pro Stock Cary Goforth (Holdenville, Okla.) picked right up where he left off in Rockingham -- at the head of the class.

Goforth, who ran solid numbers even during the slick afternoon session, topped the Elite Motorsports Pro Stock charts in the nightcap as the provisional No. 1 qualifier after one day of competition with a 6.366 elapsed time at 218.72 miles per hour.

We are feeling pretty good. Being No. 1 after two sessions is somewhere I haven't been so we are always treading new waters out here," Goforth said. "My crew is in the zone right now, we just have to keep everything going."

Goforth went head-to-head with Frank Gugliotta (Mt. Airy, Md.) in the evening session, putting down the low E.T. of the two, but it was Gugliotta edging the points leader at the line to pick up Friday's Quarter-Max Last Man Standing Award.

Gugliotta ran a 6.374 at 220.12 mph.

"We lost the last man standing and we are burnt up about that. I have been working really hard in staging shallow and trying to make sure we hit our shift points right. I guess I haven't been focusing on the tree," Goforth said. "We can't afford to lose those five points. The thing that we want is to walk out of here with the points lead on Sunday. We can't have any first round losses or things like that.

"It is important that we stay focused and do the things that we have to do to be consistent. Consistency is going to win this championship and consistency is going to win this race."

Goforth and Gugliotta sit first and second in Elite Motorsports qualifying, while defending world champion Pete Berner is third with a lap of 6.399 at 218.80 mph.

Cary's father Dean Goforth sits fourth with an identical E.T. as Berner (6.399) and Richard Freeman rounds out the top five (6.424, 218.16).

Saturday's action will get back underway at 10 a.m. with sportsman qualifying followed by the third round of professional qualifying at 3 p.m. and the SafeAuto Night of Fire beginning at 6 p.m.

-credit: ihra

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Series Drag
Drivers Scott Weis , Ed Hoover , Mitch King , Harold Martin , Richard Freeman , Frank Gugliotta , Todd Simpson