Marc Caruso made a solid pass of 5.877-seconds at 245.05-mph in the final qualifying session of the E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Series presented by J&A Services. Then things went wrong. Caruso’s parachutes failed to deploy, and he didn’t have any brake as he careened towards the sand trap at the top end of the track at Bristol Dragway.
Caruso walked away from the incident and is qualified for the field, though it seems unlikely he’ll be able to return for elimination action on Sunday. Todd Tutterow is the No. 1 qualifier with a 248.66-mph pass. Khalid AlBalooshi made the quickest run of the fourth and final qualifying session with a 5.818 at 255.19.
Sinei Frigo is the No. 2 qualifier with a 5.788 and defending world champion Mike Janis is the No. 3 qualifier with a 5.800. Mike Castellana and Chad Green round out the top five.
Pro Mod qualifying was relatively tame at the NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals compared the wild action witnessed at the Menards NHRA Heartland Nationals in Topeka less than a week ago.
That didn’t make the action any less compelling. Erica Enders barely missed qualifying, as she ended up in the No. 17 position. Clint Satterfield and Rickie Smith also missed out on the tight field. Kris Thorne, Chip King, Jim Whiteley, Harry Hruska and Dwayne Wolfe also all failed to make the cut at the NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals.
The bump spot, a 5.858-second pass made by Jose Gonzalez, is nearly a full tenth of a second quicker than the 5.954 notched by King a season ago. Great weather and the cut-throat nature of Pro Mod has made it incredibly difficult to get into the field, let alone win on Sunday, every weekend.
First-round eliminations are scheduled to follow Top Fuel and Funny Car on Sunday. Eliminations will begin with Top Fuel at noon Eastern. You can catch all elimination action live on NHRA.tv or by watching the FS1 broadcast at 2 p.m. Eastern.