SHREVEPORT, La. - J.R. Todd knew that he had a plenty hefty task before him in the first round of the IHRA Mopar Parts World Finals hosted by Red River Raceway in Shreveport, La. The 18-year old, rookie Top Fuel driver from Lawrenceburg, Ind., was given the daunting task of taking out points leader Paul Romine in the first round. The driver of the second Bruce Litton Top Fueler fell short of accomplishing his mission, but he gained some comfort in knowing that he'd give the veteran a respectable battle.

Todd feels disappointed that he fell short of his goal.

"I wanted this one real bad," explained Todd, who is winless against Romine this season. "We gave it our best shot and came up short. It's frustrating, that's for sure. This is just one race, we'll have another opportunity at Rockingham in November."

Todd had less than spectacular runs on his first two attempts, but made up for it on his final attempt. He may have been qualified, but he solidified his position with a career best 4.848 elapsed time at a slowing mile per hour of 279.27. He ended qualifying as the fourth quickest.

In his first round match, Todd was the quicker of the two off of the starting line by .15, but the deficit was quickly erased at the eighth-mile. Romine scored the victory with a 4.789/308.71. Todd lost with a 5.067/259.01.

His next event will be the rain-delayed IHRA CARQUEST Autumn Nationals in Rockingham, NC., during the weekend of November 4 - 5.