Brittany Force ran the quickest time in NHRA Top Fuel world history with a 3.623-second blast at 331.61-mph to secure her third-straight No. 1 qualifier at the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil.
Force made the quickest run in three of the four qualifying sessions, earning nine bonus points to get the start of the NHRA Countdown to the Championship off on the right foot. She will race Todd Paton in the first round.
The 2017 Top Fuel world champion, driving with David Grubnic at the helm for the first season, is looking for her second win of the season. Her last win came in April at the Mopar Express Lane NHRA SpringNationals. She entered the Countdown in fourth place, behind Steve Torrence, Doug Kalitta and Antron Brown.
Leah Pritchett slotted in behind her rival with a 3.673. Pritchett's Mopar Top Fuel performed consistently during qualifying, earning bonus points in the final three qualifying sessions. Pritchett will face off against Lex Joon as she attempts to come from the No. 7 position in the standings to win her first Top Fuel championship and second in as many seasons after winning the SAMTech.edu Factory Stock Showdown world championship in 2018.
Doug Kalitta followed up his Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals victory with a No. 3 qualifying performance. He went 3.688 at 332.59, just ahead of Kalitta Motorsports teammate Richie Crampton, who continued his impressive string of qualifying performances by slotting into the No. 4 position.
Defending world champion Steve Torrence will race Clay Millican in the first round after qualifying in the No. 8 position. The top eight racers all made passes in the 3.60-second range, with Torrence and rookie racer Austin Prock running 3.697. Prock out-qualified because of his superior speed.