Doug Kalitta qualifies No. 8 in Dallas; Teammates Scott Kalitta and "Aussie Dave" Grubnic qualify No. 10 and No. 13 respectively Ennis, Tex., (Oct. 8, 2005) -- At the O'Reilly Fall NHRA Nationals in Ennis, Tex., Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster...
Doug Kalitta qualifies No. 8 in Dallas; Teammates Scott Kalitta and "Aussie Dave" Grubnic qualify No. 10 and No. 13 respectively
Ennis, Tex., (Oct. 8, 2005) -- At the O'Reilly Fall NHRA Nationals in Ennis, Tex., Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster driver Doug Kalitta led the three-car Team Kalitta Top Fuel qualifying efforts for Sunday's 16-car field of final eliminations at the Texas Motorplex, just south of downtown Dallas.
Two-time Top Fuel points runner-up (2003-2004) Doug qualified No. 8 with a best lap down the quarter-mile of 4.518 seconds at 328.94 mph. He will race No. 9 qualifier Cory McClenathan in round one of eliminations. Doug is 15-9 versus McClenathan in eliminations in his career. The two nitro veterans have raced each other only once in 2005 with Doug prevailing in the semifinals at the Mac Tools Gatornationals in Gainesville, Fla.
Doug enters final eliminations in third place in Top Fuel championship points. He is 211 points behind leader Tony Schumacher.
Doug, 41, is an eight-year Top Fuel veteran and former USAC National Sprint Car Champion (1994). He owns 24 NHRA national event trophies. He has five wins, a career-best, so far in 2005 (Gainesville, Bristol, Tenn., Atlanta, Sonoma, Calif., and Brainerd).
Two-time Top Fuel World Champion (1994-1995) and Doug's cousin Scott, 43, driver of the Mac Tools/Jesse James Top Fuel dragster, qualified No. 10 (4.570 sec., 321.88 mph). He will race No. 7 qualifier Larry Dixon in round one of eliminations. Scott is 14-9 versus Dixon in elimination rounds in his career. Scott is 3-1 versus Dixon this season with their last match-up going Scott's way with a win light in the first round at the previous event in Joliet, Ill.
Scott, who won the opening event of the 2005 season in Pomona, Calif., in February, and again in June in Joliet, is currently eighth in championship points.
Scott has 18 (17 Top Fuel, 1 Funny Car) NHRA national event victories in his 24-year career.
"Aussie Dave" Grubnic, who is driving a specially painted StriVectin-SD Top Fueler this weekend in Dallas, qualified in the No. 13 (4.774 sec., 287.41 mph) slot on his fourth and final qualifying attempt. He will race No. 4 qualifier Rod Fuller in round one of eliminations. Grubnic is 1-2 versus Fuller in his career. All three of their match-ups have come in the 2005 season. Grubnic won his first round of the season when he defeated Fuller in round one at the season-opening Winternationals event in Pomona.
Native Australian Grubnic, 43, the $100,000 Budweiser Shootout special event winner last fall in Las Vegas, made history May 29th in Topeka, Kans., by becoming the first non-North American to win an NHRA Top Fuel national event. The win in Topeka was Grubnic's first in his 11-year career.
Grubnic is currently in fourth place in championship points.
The O'Reilly Fall NHRA Nationals is the 21st of 23 national events in the 2005 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series.
Sunday's final eliminations begin with the Top Fuel class at 11:00 a.m.