Female Racer Improves to 10th in NHRA Top Fuel Qualifying
NORWALK, Ohio (July 4, 2015) – It was July 4th and the fireworks were flying on the track and in the air in the second day of qualifying at Summit Motorsports Park for Sunday’s NHRA Summit Racing Equipment Nationals.
And those fireworks on the track included a career best top speed for female driver Top Fuel driver Leah Pritchett, who piloted the Gumout “Solid Gold” machine with a speed of 324.67 miles per hour in the Saturday night action.
Gaining a bigger fan following with “new look” gold livery with the Dote Racing car, Pritchett posted two solid runs Saturday in her two qualifying attempts. In the first qualifying round, Pritchett improved on her Friday times with a 3.836-second run at 318.54 miles per hour.
It was in the Saturday night effort that Pritchett set her personal best in speed with an elapsed time of 3.801 seconds at 324.67 m.p.h. in the Doug Kuch and Rob Flynn-tuned dragster.
The 3.80 timing put Pritchett tenth in the 16-driver Top Fuel field for Sunday’s final eliminations set to begin at 11 a.m. EDT. Nineteen drivers attempted to qualify for the 16 starting spots.
“We came back from a tough Friday to put in some solid runs Saturday,” said Pritchett, who will take on former NHRA Mello Yello Series champion Shawn Langston in the first round Sunday at Norwalk. “The car really moved well at the far end in the second session and I know our Dote team has been working hard on that aspect of our program. Now we have a tough competitor Sunday in Shawn. We have been racing against one another since our Junior Dragster days.”
Doug Kalitta recorded a new track record Saturday in Top Fuel qualifying with a time of 3.731 seconds in winning the pole position.
ESPN will televise the final eliminations of the NHRA Summit Racing Equipment Nationals at noon Sunday.