Joliet: Antron Brown Saturday notes

BROWN EARNS FOURTH NO. 1 QUALIFYING AWARD OF 2009 SEASON SATURDAY AT JOLIET JOLIET, Ill. (June 6, 2009) - Antron Brown earned his second straight No. 1 qualifying award Saturday afternoon at Route 66 Raceway as the 20-time NHRA winner paced the...

BROWN EARNS FOURTH NO. 1 QUALIFYING AWARD OF 2009 SEASON SATURDAY AT JOLIET

JOLIET, Ill. (June 6, 2009) - Antron Brown earned his second straight No. 1 qualifying award Saturday afternoon at Route 66 Raceway as the 20-time NHRA winner paced the Top Fuel field in his Mike Ashley-owned Matco Tools dragster. Brown used a qualifying-best elapsed time of 3.826-seconds to lead the field at the 12th annual United Association Nationals. It is his 18th career pole and seventh in Top Fuel.

Brown collected his fourth pole of the season by using Brian Corradi and Mark Oswald horsepower to power the bright blue Matco Tools/A&R Transportation dragster to a lap of 3.826 seconds at 317.94 mph on Friday evening under the lights at Route 66 Raceway. It was the third fastest 1,000-foot speed. Brown has clocked the three fastest 1,000-foot speeds in the Top Fuel category (319.75 and 318.02 mph). He is the only driver to exceed 318 mph in 1,000-foot racing.

On Saturday, following a short rain delay, Brown used a tune-up from Corradi and Oswald to clock the quickest and fastest run of the third qualifying session. The former college track star powered to a lap of 3.860 at 314.68 to remain atop the Top Fuel order in the Matco/A&R/DirecTV car. On his final qualifying attempt, Brown's Matco Tools rail overpowered the track and slowed to a lap of 5.063 at 134.87. The Matco car posted a .837-60 foot time, the second quickest of the day.

Brown now has an average qualifying position of 3.5 in 10 races this season. His four poles are the most in Top Fuel. He now has qualified in the No. 1 position at 12 tracks after earning his first career pole at Route 66 Raceway. He earned six PSM poles in 2001 and has won races at 11 different NHRA facilities.

"It's going to be just like it was today on Sunday," Brown said. "It was cloudy out there and the track was really good. We're just going to take it one round at a time. That's what you have to do. It so tough out there. There are so many good cars, look at Clay (Millican) running that 3.85 on that last run.

"We're going to give it our all and try to go tit-for-tat with these guys. I'm excited about race day. It's going to be about leaving first off the line and who has the hot car setup. You're going to need to run mid to low 3.80s to win rounds. I'm just excited to be part of this Matco Tools team. Our car continues to run great and being No. 1 (qualifier) is very rewarding for our guys."

Brown will face off against No. 16 qualifier Luigi Novelli in the opening round of Top Fuel eliminations at 11 a.m (CT) on Sunday morning at Route 66 Raceway. Brown, who has a record of 18-7 this season, has never faced Novelli in eliminations. Brown is a two-time Pro Stock Motorcycle winner at the Chicagoland track (2000-01).

-credit: mar

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Series NHRA
Drivers Antron Brown , Luigi Novelli , Mike Ashley