BRAINERD, MN, qualifying: Doug Herbert and the Snap-on Tools Top Fuel team continued to improve on their consistency during qualifying with four good, consistent runs at the silver anniversary of the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals. Herbert qualified for...
BRAINERD, MN, qualifying: Doug Herbert and the Snap-on Tools Top Fuel team continued to improve on their consistency during qualifying with four good, consistent runs at the silver anniversary of the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals. Herbert qualified for his third consecutive race since a change in tuners in mid-season, and his performance has improved at every race as the crew continues to jell and gain more data.
The racers on the NHRA tour were treated to beautiful weather conditions when they arrived at Central Minnesota's Brainerd International Raceway. After enduring a scorching record heat wave during the three-race Western swing, the change in conditions was eagerly welcomed by everyone.
Herbert began the weekend with a good opening run during the first Top Fuel qualifying session Friday afternoon. The Snap-on Tools dragster recorded a 4.701 at 302.21 mph, finishing the round qualified eighth. The 38-year-old ATP rated pilot improved during the evening session, blasting to a 4.679 at 314.24 mph. Herbert finished the first day of qualifying in the No. 12 spot with two more session scheduled for Saturday.
The second day of qualifying at the Lucas Oil Nationals began cool and overcast with a lingering threat of rain in the area. A huge crowd of quarter-mile faithful crammed into the legendary "Zoo" at Brainerd, a huge campground reminiscent of a Mardi Gras on nitro. The ground-shaking 7,000 horsepower Top Fuelers rolled to the starting line for their third qualifying attempt at noon with the track still obscured by clouds. Herbert remained consistent, running a 4.766 at 303.91 mph and finishing the session in the No. 13 spot. The Snap-on Tools dragster saved its best run for last as Herbert posted a 4.662 at 316.82 mph to finish qualifying in the No. 14 position.
"We made four good runs down the track and we're building up our run information and becoming more consistent," said Herbert. "We'd prefer to start from a better qualifying position but we did make some decent runs and we'll be ready to go tomorrow. As long as we qualify we have the potential to beat anyone here, we just have to step up the performance of the Snap-on Tools dragster a little bit and we'll be okay."
-credit: doug herbert racing