Denver: Saturday qualifying report

McCLENATHAN TAKES TOP SPOT IN DENVER; PEDREGON, ANDERSON, KRAWIEC ALSO NO. 1 AT MILE-HIGH NATIONALS MORRISON, Colo. -- Cory McClenathan raced to the No. 1 qualifying position in Top Fuel as qualifying came to an end Saturday at the ...

McCLENATHAN TAKES TOP SPOT IN DENVER; PEDREGON, ANDERSON, KRAWIEC ALSO NO. 1 AT MILE-HIGH NATIONALS

MORRISON, Colo. -- Cory McClenathan raced to the No. 1 qualifying position in Top Fuel as qualifying came to an end Saturday at the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals at Bandimere Speedway

Tony Pedregon, Greg Anderson and Eddie Krawiec were also No. 1 qualifiers in their respective categories at the 13th of 24 events on the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series.

McClenathan's run of 3.929-seconds at 308.07 mph from Friday night was fast enough to keep him and his FRAM dragster in the top spot. It's McClenathan's second No. 1 qualifier of the season, 32nd of his career and third in Denver.

"It's always the way it should be, team cars going one and two," said McClenathan, referring to teammate Tony Schumacher taking the second spot in the field. "Now if we can just make the plan work out tomorrow and go the rounds we need to go and be able to go to the final that would be tremendous."

Defending event winner Rod Fuller qualified 13th and two-time Bandimere Speedway winner Larry Dixon qualified third.

Funny Car driver Tony Pedregon also stayed in the No. 1 spot thanks to his Friday night run. Pedregon powered his Q Horsepower Chevy Impala SS to a 4.212 at 286.50. It's Pedregon's second No. 1 qualifier of the season, 33rd of his career, and first at Bandimere Speedway.

"The conditions really stayed good today," said Pedregon. "Overall I think the track was better than average and some of it is due to that first 150 (feet) and the track cooling system."

Defending event winner Jack Beckman qualified 10th while Denver native Melanie Troxel will start second in the field.

In Pro Stock, Greg Anderson drove his Summit Racing Equipment Pontiac GXP to the top spot and new track records with a run of 7.010 at 196.10. It's Anderson's third No. 1 qualifier of the season, 65th of his career, and fourth at Bandimere Speedway.

"The track is just so much better than it's ever been," said Anderson. "It just amazes me. We come out here and have completely different (racing) conditions than we do anywhere else. Still you have four or five hundredths between the field. The competition in the field is just amazing."

Defending event winner Allen Johnson sits third while defending POWERade world champion Jeg Coughlin sits ninth.

Pro Stock Motorcycle rider Eddie Krawiec rode his Screamin' Eagle Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson to a 7.328 at 181.74 to take his second consecutive No. 1 qualifier and a new track record for time.

"To come here and get No. 1, for me mentally, really helps my confidence," said Krawiec. "Anytime you have a track record, it's good, especially here. When you're up here on the mountain in the thin air it's hard to make horsepower, so it's pretty special."

Points leader Andrew Hines will start fourth while defending event winner Matt Smith will start third.

Sunday's eliminations begin at noon.

-credit: nhra

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Series NHRA
Drivers Jeg Coughlin , Larry Dixon , Tony Pedregon , Tony Schumacher , Greg Anderson , Cory McClenathan , Jack Beckman , Melanie Troxel , Allen Johnson , Andrew Hines , Rod Fuller , Matt Smith , Eddie Krawiec