Capps secures first No. 1 qualifier of season at 52nd annual Gatornationals

By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher

NAPA Auto Parts Funny Car pilot Ron Capps has claimed his first No. 1 qualifier of the new season at the 52nd annual Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals on Saturday. Capps went 3.895 at 329.02 mph to claim the top spot at Gainesville Raceway in Gainesville, Florida.

Capps claimed the top spot on Friday during his first qualifying session. In two qualifying sessions on Saturday, no driver was able to beat his pass.

Ron Capps celebrates his first No. 1 qualifier of the season (Photo by the NHRA/Twitter)

“I’m just a small link and I just didn’t want to mess up,” said Capps, who has three wins at the historic facility. “I’ve got my first Camping World hat (for a No. 1 qualifier) and it’s great. It’s been fun and we’re excited, but tomorrow is race day. We’ve got a great crowd here, and I’m feeling good and I don’t want the dream to end, so hopefully, we can finish the job on Sunday.”

ROKiT Phones and ABK Beer sponsored Alexis DeJoria is the No. 2 qualifier. The Texas native went 3.914 at 324.28 mph.

Levi, Ray, and Shoup Inc. sponsored Tim Wilkerson as the No. 3 qualifier. The Springfield, Illinois native 3.917 at 326.32 mph.

Eliminations Ladder:

1) Ron Capps vs. 16) Jim Campbell
2) Alexis DeJoria vs. 15) John Smith
3) Tim Wilkerson vs. 14) Dave Richards
4) Robert Hight vs. 13) Bobby Bode
5) John Force vs. 12) Paul Lee
6) J.R. Todd vs. 11) Blake Alexander
7) Cruz Pedregon vs. 10) Chad Green
8) Matt Hagan vs. 9) Bob Tasca III

Two drivers did not qualify. Terry Haddock was the first driver on the outside looking in, as he went 4.228 at 244.47 mph.

Mike McIntire Jr. was the 18th qualified driver, as he went 4.587 at 188.94 mph.

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