NHRA - National Hot Rod Association

Betway NHRA Carolina Nationals Saturday preview

Day two of the Betway NHRA Carolina Nationals dawned with a morning rainshower that cleansed the track and the palate of race fans in anticipation of another very quick day of qualifying and racing at zMAX Dragway.
23 Sep 2023
Phil Burgess, NHRA National Dragster Editor
Race coverage
Betway NHRA Carolina Nationals

Light morning rain delayed the start of Saturday’s action at zMAX Dragway by three hours, but it’s a much better scenario than the overnight forecasts that had predicted that the second day of the Betway NHRA Carolina Nationals might be delayed until early afternoon.

Teams went into the night thinking that their runs of what is obviously a very quick and fast dragstrip might be limited by a weather delay, but, other than losing the morning Sportsman action, t looks like a good bet that the two scheduled Camping World Drag Racing Series will take place.

Friday’s heroes were Matt Hagan in Funny Car and Gaige Herrera in Pro Stock Motorcycle as both led their fields handily, Hagan with a Funny Car-leading, track-record3.825 that was exactly six-hundredths quicker than world champ Ron Capps’ second-place 3.885 while Herrera’s shocking 6.731 — on a less-than-perfect pass — was more than eight-hundredths quicker than No. 2 Chip Ellis. With two runs today planned under what should be cool conditions, neither of those runs in guaranteed to stay No. 1.

Pep Boys NHRA Nationals Top Fuel winner Doug Kalitta, who ran four straight 3.6-second elapsed times to win that race, ran a fifth straight in Friday’s lone session and his 3.665 was two-hundredths ahead of world champ Brittany Force at the front of a very quick field.

Erica Enders, who has been on a qualifying rampage of late since her Elite team tuned the gremlins from her JHG Camaro at midseason, fronts the Prig Stock field after one session as she continued her blitz of good elapsed times from last weekend’s Pep Boys NHRA Nationals


Antron Brown, Top Fuel; Ron Capps, Funny Car; Aaron Stanfield, Pro Stock.


Antron Brown, 4, TF; Robert Hight, 4, FC; Jason Line, 3 PS; Andrew Hines, 5, PSM.


Top Fuel - 3.651 seconds by Brittany Force, April '23; 336.91 mph by B. Force, Sept. '22.
Funny Car - 3.825 seconds by Matt Hagan, Sept.'23; 335.57 mph by Capps, April '23.
Pro Stock - 6.455 seconds by Jason Line, Mar. '15; 215.48 mph by Greg Anderson, Mar. '15.
Pro Stock Motorcycle - 6.710 seconds by Gaige Herrera, April ‘23; 203.49 mph by Eddie Krawiec, May ‘21.


SATURDAY, Sept. 23
Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series eliminations continue
NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series qualifying at 1 and 4 p.m.
SUNDAY, Sept. 24
NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series eliminations begin at 11 a.m.


Saturday, Sept. 23: FOX Sports 1 (FS1), will televise one and half hours of qualifying coverage at 9:30 a.m. ET
Sunday, Sept. 25: FOX Sports 1 (FS1), will televise one and half hours of qualifying coverage at 11 a.m. ET
Sunday, Sept. 25: FOX Sports 1 (FS1) will televise three hours of finals coverage at 2 p.m. ET