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Ron Capps qualifies No. 1 for the 24th time in his career at the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals

Ron Capps reset both ends of the Maple Grove Raceway track record on Friday night. That turned into the No. 1 qualifier at NHRA Countdown opener.
14 Sep 2019
Jacob Sundstrom, NHRA National Dragster Associate Editor
Race coverage
Ron Capps

Ron Capps captured his second No. 1 of the 2019 season on the back of a record-setting performance in his NAPA Filters Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car. 

The Don Schumacher Racing team reset both ends of the track record with a 3.837-second hit at a staggering 339.28-miles-per-hour during the second qualifying session. That speed is the second-fastest of all time, behind only the 339-mph run made by Robert Hight in Sonoma in 2017. Capps broke his own previous-best speed by nearly 6-mph. 

The NAPA Filters team entered the NHRA Countdown to the Championship, which began this weekend at the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals, in the No. 5 position. Capps and tuner Rahn Tobler did their part to fight towards the top of the standings by picking up a cluster of bonus points while earning a matchup with No. 16 qualifier Mike Smith. 

Race day begins at 11 a.m. Eastern. You can catch all the action from the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals on FS1 or on NHRA.tv.

Bob Tasca III and Jack Beckman rounded out the top three with 3.866 and 3.876 runs. They will race John Smith and Jim Campbell, respectively. Tasca won back-to-back events earlier this season while Beckman is looking for his first win since 2018. 

Multi-time world champions Shawn Langdon and Matt Hagan will meet in the first round in a critical matchup for both racers. Former Top Fuel and Super Comp world champion Langdon enters Reading in ninth place while Hagan, a two-time Funny Car champion, begins the event in sixth. A first-round loss for either competitor would put them in a tough position as they chase another world championship. 

16-time world champion John Force, hot off another Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals victory, will face longtime rival Cruz Pedregon. Pedregon missed out on competing in the NHRA Countdown to the Championship and will surely be looking to take a shot at Force, who is looking to add the 17th big trophy to his collection.