Ron Capps not only collected his first No. 1 qualifying effort of the season with his Friday-evening 3.879 but then solidified that ranking with the best pass of the final session, a 3.912 in the NAPA Auto Parts Charger. It was the 23rd No. 1 of Capps' decorated career and completed a stellar qualifying effort that yielded four straight three-second passes.
Paul Lee had a stunning run in Q4 to complete an impressive quartet of passes with a 3.914 that backed up earlier passes of 4.082, 3.954, and 3.984. John Force was just a tick behind him with a 3.915 but stayed in the No. 2 spot with his Friday pass of 3.884. Bob Tasca III also impressed with his fourth straight three-second pass of the weekend, a 3.923.
Cruz Pedregon, who entered the final session on the bump with a 4.132, got some breathing room with the Snap-on Toyota after pulling a 4.053 rabbit out of the hat and Jonnie Lindberg, back in the seat of Jim head’s car for the first time in four events, also pulled off a last-reprieve effort, uncorking a 4.023 to go from outside the field to the No. 13 spot.
Force had the best lap of Q3 with a 3.935, swapping the performance lead for the session with incoming leader Ron Capps, who posted a 3.955. Lee found the threes for the second straight run with a 3.984 while Bristol champ Tasca III did it for the “IIIrd” straight time with a 3.987 to highlight a warm session in which a number of cars struggled for traction.
FUNNY CAR LOW QUALIFIER RON CAPPS: “Don [Schumacher, team owner] has been out of the country for the last couple of races so we definitely wanted to show off. There’s definitely nothing better than putting our Hellcat No. 1 and picking John Force’s pocket. That was an extra fist bump for Don last night and three more points doing it in Q4.
“It’s so much fun; we don’t want to get cocky or overconfident because the Funny car class is to tough right now. There are probably 10 Funny cars that are just a couple of runs away from standing in the winner’s circle and its just going to get tougher throughout the summer, which makes this even more special right now. Everyone went up there to throw down and take the No. 1 spot.”