Memphis: Schumacher, Toliver lead qualfying

MILLINGTON, Tenn. - Tony Schumacher led Top Fuel qualifying Friday at the 13th annual AutoZone Nationals presented by Pennzoil. Jerry Toliver, Richie Stevens and Randy Daniels also were leaders in their respective categories at the $1.8 million...

MILLINGTON, Tenn. - Tony Schumacher led Top Fuel qualifying Friday at the 13th annual AutoZone Nationals presented by Pennzoil.

Jerry Toliver, Richie Stevens and Randy Daniels also were leaders in their respective categories at the $1.8 million race, the 20th of 23 events in the $45 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series. Schumacher, from Park Ridge, Ill., covered the Memphis Motorsports Park quarter-mile in 4.593 seconds at 315.19 mph in his U.S. Army dragster to lead the 16-car order. "That's exactly what we need to do," said Schumacher, who trails points leader Gary Scelzi, currently qualified third, by 49 points in the NHRA Winston standings. "We want to win this championship and leave no room for anyone to say we backed into it. It's going to be tight tomorrow. There's four or five other cars out here that can run in the 4.50s, so it should be pretty exciting. We're going to go after it with everything we've got. We want to stay No. 1, so we'll be focused and ready." Toliver, from Huntington Beach, Calif., regained his early season form in Funny Car by clocking a track record time of 4.896 with a speed of 302.28 in his WWF Racing Pontiac Firebird to lead that category. "We've had our troubles of late, but I think we've got it turned around," Toliver said. "We recently changed over to a new chassis and I think we've got the tuneup back. We had good conditions today and saw some good times out there. If the track temperature comes around tomorrow, we might see some real numbers." Stevens, from New Orleans, posted a career-best time to lead the 16-car Pro Stock order, running 6.836 at 198.96 in a Pontiac Firebird. Daniels, from Grantsboro, N.C., led the quickest Pro Stock Truck field in NHRA history with a track record time of 7.476 with a speed of 179.68 in a Chevy S-10. Greg Stanfield qualified No. 6 with a track record speed of 180.07 mph, also in an S-10. Qualifying continues Saturday at 11 a.m.

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Series NHRA
Drivers Tony Schumacher , Gary Scelzi , Randy Daniels , Greg Stanfield , Jerry Toliver