Commerce: Saturday qualifying report

BERNSTEIN, FORCE, ANDERSON AND BROWN EARN NO. 1 QUALIFYING POSITIONS AT ATLANTA DRAGWAY COMMERCE, Ga. -- Third-year pro Brandon Bernstein secured his first No. 1 qualifying award of the season Saturday to lead the Top Fuel category at the 26th...

BERNSTEIN, FORCE, ANDERSON AND BROWN EARN NO. 1 QUALIFYING POSITIONS AT ATLANTA DRAGWAY

COMMERCE, Ga. -- Third-year pro Brandon Bernstein secured his first No. 1 qualifying award of the season Saturday to lead the Top Fuel category at the 26th annual Summit Racing Equipment Southern Nationals at Atlanta Dragway. The son of legendary drag racer Kenny Bernstein was joined by fellow top qualifiers John Force (Funny Car), Greg Anderson (Pro Stock), and Antron Brown (Pro Stock Motorcycle) at the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series event.

Bernstein earned his ninth career No. 1 qualifying position with his 4.521 at 328.06 mph performance from Friday, and also posted the quickest run Saturday, with a 4.540 second effort.

"It really seems like Tim [Richards, crew chief] has found something," said Bernstein. "He can tune this Budweiser/Lucas Oil car to do what he wants, it seems, no matter if it's sunny or cool. As a driver, it's such a good feeling to know that if you cut a good light and do your job you have a great chance to win the race."

Force's 4.686 at 329.58 performance from Friday's second session stood and the 28-year racing veteran now has four low qualifier awards this year in his Castrol GTX Ford Mustang and 129 in his career.

"It's good to run in the heat today," Force said of his 4.809 in Saturday's final qualifying session. "But I see [point leader Ron] Capps over there and he's going straight down the alley every time, just like he has all year. Getting low E.T. is great, but it don't mean a thing if you go home early tomorrow. We got a good hot rod but tomorrow's a new day."

Pro Stock's Anderson earned his fifth No. 1 position of the season and 45th of his career with a 6.704 at 205.22 mph in his Summit Racing Pontiac GTO.

"Last night's run came at the right time," Anderson said. "There are a lot of guys and girls running strong right now in this class. Even so, the last 13 elimination ladders have been led by a Summit Racing car. If I don't get it done, Jason [Line, teammate] does. It's a real credit to our team because it isn't easy."

Brown raced to a track-record 7.080 at 188.28 on his U.S. Army Suzuki to claim his first No. 1 qualifying effort of the season in Pro Stock Motorcycle.

"Yet again, this U.S. Army team got the job done," Brown said. "I'm really pumped up for tomorrow. Hopefully, it will be my turn in victory lane."

Eliminations start Sunday at 11 a.m.

-nhra-

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Series NHRA
Drivers Antron Brown , Kenny Bernstein , John Force , Greg Anderson , Brandon Bernstein