Denver: Friday's Mopar Parts Mile-High Nationals

MORRISSON, Colo. - Gary Scelzi led all Top Fuel competitors Friday after the first day of qualifying for the 22nd annual Mopar Parts Mile-High Nationals at the scenic Bandimere Speedway. Scelzi, from Fresno, Calif., set the pace...

MORRISSON, Colo. - Gary Scelzi led all Top Fuel competitors Friday after the first day of qualifying for the 22nd annual Mopar Parts Mile-High Nationals at the scenic Bandimere Speedway. Scelzi, from Fresno, Calif., set the pace when he covered the distance in 4.697 seconds at 308.21 mph in his Team Winston dragster. Scelzi is looking for his first No. 1 qualifying position at Bandimere Speedway. The two-time NHRA Winston champion has never qualified higher than fifth or visited the winner's circle in Colorado. "Historically in Denver we have never really done well," said Scelzi. "We have never started out this good here. Two runs, no tire smoke and we were getting down the racetrack. If tomorrow it's 100 degrees, it will be a whole different ballgame. We'll start playing around with the tune-up for what it will need on race day. I know Joe (Amato) and Tony (Schumacher) both have more in them, but it is going to be tough to run a 69 in the sun. I'll guarantee that. But this is drag racing, never say never." Bruce Sarver, Warren Johnson and Matt Hines were also the leaders in their respective categories at the $1.8 million race, the 13th of 23 events in the $45 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series. Bakersfield, Calif.'s, Sarver blasted down the track in his e-moola.com Pontiac Firebird in 5.040 at 301.81 to lead the Funny Car field. Sarver and Scelzi's are teammates, both driving for Scelzi's crew chief Alan Johnson. "That was a real good run but we probably could have ran a little bit quicker but we spun the tires pretty good from half-track on," said Sarver. "We are excited about going tomorrow in the heat because we think we can run close to our qualifying time in the heat of the day. If we can do that than we will have a bad hot rod on race day. If my time holds that would be my first No. 1, so I don't know what it feels like." Johnson, from Buford, Ga., sped down the quarter-mile in 7.351 at 187.11 behind the wheel of his GM Goodwrench Service Plus Pontiac Firebird to lead the Pro Stock category. Local favorite Hines, from Trinidad, Colo., led all Pro Stock Motorcycle riders with his run of 7.736 at 170.92 atop his Eagle One Suzuki. Qualifying continues Saturday at 11:15 a.m.

MORRISON, Colo. - Friday's qualifying results for the 22nd annual Mopar Parts Mile-High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway, the 13th of 23 events in the $45-million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series.

TOP FUEL 1. Gary Scelzi, 4.697 seconds, 308.21 mph; 2. Joe Amato, 4.750, 303.23; 3. Larry Dixon, 4.794, 304.25; 4. Tony Schumacher, 4.813, 299.20; 5. Rhonda Hartman-Smith, 4.846, 277.06; 6. Cory McClenathan, 4.863, 307.86; 7. David Grubnic, 4.881, 298.80; 8. Don Lampus, 4.885, 306.88; 9. Kenny Bernstein, 4.924, 291.01; 10. Bobby Lagana, 4.981, 274.83; 11. Doug Herbert, 5.015, 282.78; 12. Joe Hartley, 5.044, 282.19; 13. Doug Kalitta, 5.051, 234.66; 14. Jim Cavalieri, 5.184, 240.08; 15. Bob Vandergriff, 5.428, 191.43; 16. Gary Clapshaw, 5.758, 248.07.

FUNNY CAR 1. Bruce Sarver, Pontiac Firebird, 5.040, 301.81; 2. Jim Epler, Chevy Camaro, 5.072, 291.82; 3. Dean Skuza, Dodge Avenger, 5.119, 303.91; 4. John Force, Ford Mustang, 5.121, 297.22; 5. Del Worsham, Firebird, 5.234, 267.22; 6. Jerry Toliver, Firebird, 5.243, 284.27; 7. Frank Pedregon, Firebird, 5.260, 276.80; 8. Tony Pedregon, Mustang, 5.261, 274.66; 9. Tim Wilkerson, Firebird, 5.379, 275.00; 10. Scotty Cannon, Camaro, 5.393, 220.80; 11. Al Hofmann, Firebird, 5.439, 268.01; 12. Dale Creasy Jr., Firebird, 5.442, 278.35; 13. Johnny Gray, Avenger, 5.499, 264.39; 14. Bob Gilbertson, Camaro, 5.765, 189.84; 15. Gary Densham, Firebird, 6.167, 160.92; 16. Whit Bazemore, Camaro, 6.285, 162.31. PRO STOCK 1. Warren Johnson, Pontiac Firebird, 7.351, 187.11; 2. Larry Morgan, Dodge Avenger, 7.355, 186.85; 3. Ron Krisher, Firebird, 7.358, 186.98; 4. Darrell Alderman, Avenger, 7.360, 187.03; 5. Allen Johnson, Avenger, 7.363, 186.46; 6. Troy Coughlin, Oldsmobile Cutlass, 7.369, 186.38; 7. Kurt Johnson, Chevy Camaro, 7.373, 187.47; 8. V. Gaines, Camaro, 7.392, 185.84; 9. Jeg Coughlin, Cutlass, 7.399, 186.18; 10. Jim Yates, Firebird, 7.406, 185.92; 11. Tom Hammonds, Camaro, 7.408, 185.36; 12. Tom Martino, Firebird, 7.411, 185.61; 13. Rickie Smith, Camaro, 7.412, 184.62; 14. Brad Jeter, Firebird, 7.437, 185.00; 15. Brad Klein, Firebird, 7.452, 184.67; 16. John Fairleigh, Firebird, 7.455, 184.83. PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE 1. Matt Hines, Suzuki, 7.736, 174.39; 2. Antron Brown, Suzuki, 7.747, 173.78; 3. Tony Mullen, Suzuki, 7.755, 172.41; 4. David Schultz, Suzuki, 7.755, 172.06; 5. Angelle Seeling, Suzuki, 7.759, 175.18; 6. Geno Scali, Suzuki, 7.841, 170.92; 7. Craig Treble, Suzuki, 7.870, 170.82; 8. Reggie Showers, Suzuki, 7.879, 169.96; 9. Ron Ayers, Suzuki, 7.907, 174.89; 10. Brian DeLong, Suzuki, 7.955, 173.92; 11. Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 7.969, 168.26; 12. Brian Ayers, Suzuki, 7.977, 166.60; 13. Clarence Markham, Suzuki, 8.026, 166.72; 14. Blaine Hale, Kawasaki, 8.187, 167.16; 15. Michael Pryor, 8.439, 157.58; 16. Lori Francis, Harley, 8.651, 150.21.

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Series NHRA
Drivers Antron Brown , Bruce Sarver , Matt Hines , Jeg Coughlin , Troy Coughlin , Larry Dixon , Darrell Alderman , Kenny Bernstein , Brad Jeter , Kurt Johnson , Warren Johnson , Bob Gilbertson , Jim Epler , Tony Pedregon , Al Hofmann , Dean Skuza , Del Worsham , Whit Bazemore , John Force , Rhonda Hartman-Smith , Tony Schumacher , Joe Amato , Gary Scelzi , Doug Kalitta , Ron Krisher , Reggie Showers , Ron Ayers , Blaine Hale , David Grubnic , Gary Densham , Scotty Cannon , Craig Treble , Cory McClenathan , Tom Hammonds , Tom Martino , Tim Wilkerson , Allen Johnson , Johnny Gray , Don Lampus , Rickie Smith , Joe Hartley , Jerry Toliver , Bob Vandergriff , Steve Johnson