2021 NHRA NEW ENGLAND NATIONALS - EVENT RESULTS
SUNDAY - J. FORCE, B. TORRENCE & STANFIELD ALL GET WINS AT NEW ENGLAND NATIONALS
In a thrilling final round between teammates, the legendary John Force knocked off Robert Hight in Funny Car at New England Dragway, powering to his 153rd career victory on Sunday at the TascaParts.com NHRA New England Nationals presented by Bandero Premium Tequila.
Billy Torrence (Top Fuel) and Aaron Stanfield (Pro Stock) also won in their respective categories at the sixth race of the 2021 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series season.
Force, NHRA’s all-time wins leader, went 3.972-seconds at 327.51 mph in his 11,000-horsepower PEAK/BlueDEF Platinum Chevrolet Camaro SS to edge out teammate Hight’s 3.993 at 323.35. It gives the John Force Racing team its third straight win in 2021 and hands Force his second victory of the year. Force, who is now second in points, got past Cory Lee, J.R. Todd, and Terry Haddock to reach the final round for the 259th time in his career. He never trailed against Hight, winning for the second time in Epping and picking up the victory in Funny Car’s 900th career race.
“(The win) represents a team effort. You have to look at both of these cars and all the people that take care of me, that’s what it’s all about,” said Force, who has won two of the last three races this year. "Robert helps me so much trying to help me back in the driver’s seat where I don’t suck so bad and, right now, I’ve got a car and I won today, and I did my job. I want to thank all the people in Epping for coming back and I want to thank Daniel Hood for a great tune-up, and (Tim) Fabrisi for fixing the cockpit in my car.”
Coming off a win at the most recent event, Hight advanced to his third final this year and 83rd in his career on Sunday, beating Alexis DeJoria, local favorite and points leader Bob Tasca III and Tim Wilkerson.
B. Torrence, who qualified No. 1, finished off his standout Top Fuel weekend in Epping with a victory, beating Mike Salinas on a holeshot in his 11,000-horsepower Capco Contractors dragster. B. Torrence went 3.827 at 324.44 to Salinas’ 3.816 at 325.37, but the Texan was slightly quicker on the starting line to earn his first victory of 2021 and seventh in his career. Following back-to-back wins by his son, Steve, the defending three-time world champ and points leader, it was B. Torrence who impressed throughout the weekend at New England Dragway. He knocked off Joe Morrison and Antron Brown and then did his job on the starting line in the final round.
“I’ll tell you what, number one, I’ve got to thank the good Lord for watching over me and, number two, I’ve got thank those Capco boys, and the elation is I won a trophy for my little granddaughter,” said B. Torrence, who picked up his first win at the track. “Steve’s been winning all the trophies for her and the old man will finally show up with one now. This place, I love it. The fans here are outstanding.”
Salinas, who qualified second, reached his first final round this year and sixth in his career thanks to victories against Buddy Hull, Doug Kalitta, and S. Torrence.
Facing off with a class legend in the finals, Stanfield again came through with a clutch performance, beating four-time world champ Greg Anderson with a run of 6.576 at 209.88 in his Janac Brothers Chevrolet Camaro. Stanfield’s first career victory came a year ago when he beat Jeg Coughlin Jr. in the final round, and his second came on Sunday against Anderson. He reached the championship round with round wins against Alan Prusiensky, Richie Stevens, and Mason McGaha before leading Anderson from start to finish in the finals.
“It’s been a lot of hard work from all the guys on the team,” said Stanfield, who jumped to second in points. “They’ve been working a lot on this hot rod and I’ve been trying to do my best to do my job behind the wheel. It all gelled together today. Getting to race somebody you grew up watching do well over the years, it’s cool to race him and beat him, so we’re happy.”
Anderson, the No. 1 qualifier and points leader in the class, beat John Gaydosh, Troy Coughlin Jr., and Matt Hartford to pick up his third final-round berth in 2021 and 161st in his career.
The NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series returns to action June 24-27 with the 14th annual Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals at Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio.
SATURDAY - ANDERSON, B. TORRENCE. HAGAN TAKE TOP SPOTS DURING QUALIFYING AT NEW ENGLAND NATIONALS
After a one-race absence at the top of Pro Stock qualifying, points leader Greg Anderson returned to his familiar perch in 2021 on Saturday at New England Dragway, racing to the No. 1 position at the TascaParts.com NHRA New England Nationals presented by Bandero Premium Tequila.
Billy Torrence (Top Fuel) and Matt Hagan (Funny Car) also qualified No. 1 in their respective categories at the sixth race of the 2021 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series season.
Anderson jumped to the top spot to open Saturday’s qualifying with a run of 6.526-seconds at 209.10 mph in his HendrickCars.com Chevrolet Camaro. It gives Anderson five No. 1 qualifiers in six races this year and 110 in his standout career. The veteran qualified second in Houston, but the four-time world champ impressed on Saturday in Epping, moving a step closer to his third win this year. A victory would also tie him with Warren Johnson for the most in Pro Stock history (97). He opens eliminations against John Gaydosh Jr.
“I certainly can’t complain,” said Anderson, a two-time winner at New England Dragway. “It’s pretty much a dream scenario to start the season. I’ve made a couple of mistakes on the driver end, otherwise, we could a seriously good run going already, but I’ve got a lot of time yet to win some races out here. This car has been pretty bad to the bone all year and it’s a beautiful-looking car. I really want to present that first drag racing trophy to Mr. Hendrick and I can’t think of a better weekend to get that job done.”
Mason McGaha, the provisional No. 1 qualifier on Friday, took the second spot after going 6.538 at 210.28 and Aaron Stanfield finished third with a run of 6.545 at 210.83.
In Top Fuel, B. Torrence picked up his second No. 1 qualifier this year, with his run of 3.744 at 324.98 in his 11,000-horsepower Capo Contractors dragster from Friday securing the spot. Torrence made a strong run of 3.760 at 322.73 to close out qualifying, giving him plenty of momentum heading into Sunday where he will try for his first win of the season and also his first at New England Dragway. Friday’s run also gave B. Torrence his fifth career No. 1 qualifier and he’ll open eliminations against Joe Morrison.
“These boys have had me in a good car all year,” said Torrence, who has six career victories. “I just have to step up my game and get in there, and get from point A to point B faster than everyone else.”
Mike Salinas qualified second after going 3.771 at 321.35, and Justin Ashley finished in the third spot thanks to his run of 3.774 at 322.58. The stop at New England Dragway is the home track for Ashley, a New York native. Points leader Steve Torrence qualified fourth with a 3.785 at 320.13.
Hagan put himself in prime position to win for a fourth straight time in Funny Car at New England Dragway, as the defending world champ earned his first top qualifier of the year thanks to his run of 3.891 at 331.53 on Friday in his 11,000-horsepower DSR Performance Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye. It gives Hagan his 41st career No. 1 qualifier and another strong showing at a track where he has won three straight races.
“With (crew chief) Dickie Venables, it’s just a matter of time,” said Hagan, who is seeking his first victory of 2021 as well. “We’ve struggled a couple of races here and there trying some things, but Dickie is tired of messing around and he’s like, ‘Let’s go get it.’ I’m excited about tomorrow. We’ve won three races in a row here and we want to make it four. It’s going to be tough to do, but we’re going to try to see if we can do it.”
Hagan’s Don Schumacher Racing teammate Ron Capps qualified second with a 3.927 at 324.59 as DSR aims for its first Funny Car win of the year on Sunday. Charlotte winner John Force qualified third after going 3.929 at 326.95, and points leader and area native Bob Tasca III was a spot behind with a run of 3.962 at 323.97.
Eliminations for the TascaParts.com NHRA New England Nationals presented by Bandero Premium Tequila begin at 11 a.m. ET on Sunday.
Sunday's first-round pairings for eliminations for the ninth annual TascaParts.com NHRA New England Nationals presented by Bandero Premium Tequila at New England Dragway, the sixth of 22 events in the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series. Pairings based on results in qualifying, which ended Saturday. DNQs listed below pairings.
Top Fuel -- 1. Billy Torrence, 3.744 seconds, 324.98 mph vs. 12. Joe Morrison, 6.746, 103.36; 2. Mike Salinas, 3.771, 321.35 vs. 11. Buddy Hull, 5.185, 135.82; 3. Justin Ashley, 3.774, 322.58 vs. 10. Leah Pruett, 3.927, 278.92; 4. Steve Torrence, 3.785, 320.13 vs. 9. Clay Millican, 3.852, 295.72; 5. Doug Kalitta, 3.788, 320.51 vs. 8. Shawn Langdon, 3.811, 314.53; 6. Antron Brown, 3.792, 323.89 vs. 7. Brittany Force, 3.798, 319.82.
Funny Car -- 1. Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger, 3.891, 331.53 vs. Bye; 2. Ron Capps, Charger, 3.927, 324.59 vs. 13. Terry Haddock, Ford Mustang, 4.876, 161.36; 3. John Force, Chevy Camaro, 3.929, 326.95 vs. 12. Cory Lee, Mustang, 4.306, 265.27; 4. Bob Tasca III, Mustang, 3.962, 323.97 vs. 11. Jim Campbell, Charger, 4.081, 314.75; 5. Alexis DeJoria, Toyota Camry, 3.963, 320.58 vs. 10. Robert Hight, Camaro, 3.992, 325.53; 6. Cruz Pedregon, Charger, 3.969, 326.71 vs. 9. J.R. Todd, Camry, 3.976, 324.05; 7. Blake Alexander, Mustang, 3.972, 322.04 vs. 8. Tim Wilkerson, Mustang, 3.974, 320.89.
Pro Stock -- 1. Greg Anderson, Chevy Camaro, 6.526, 209.10 vs. 16. John Gaydosh Jr, Camaro, 6.841, 201.37; 2. Mason McGaha, Camaro, 6.538, 210.28 vs. 15. Chris McGaha, Camaro, 6.631, 208.97; 3. Aaron Stanfield, Camaro, 6.545, 210.83 vs. 14. Alan Prusiensky, Dodge Dart, 6.625, 208.33; 4. Erica Enders, Camaro, 6.545, 210.14 vs. 13. Bob Benza, Camaro, 6.595, 209.14; 5. Matt Hartford, Camaro, 6.551, 210.37 vs. 12. Val Smeland, Camaro, 6.586, 210.01; 6. Deric Kramer, Camaro, 6.552, 209.62 vs. 11. Richie Stevens, Camaro, 6.585, 210.50; 7. Dallas Glenn, Camaro, 6.554, 210.28 vs. 10. Kyle Koretsky, Camaro, 6.583, 209.59; 8. Troy Coughlin Jr., Camaro, 6.578, 209.30 vs. 9. Kenny Delco, Camaro, 6.580, 210.28.
FRIDAY - HAGAN, B. TORRENCE. M. MCGAHA EARN PROVISIONAL NO. 1 SPOTS AT TASCAPARTS.COM NHRA NEW ENGLAND NATIONALS PRESENTED BY BANDERO PREMIUM TEQUILA
Matt Hagan’s impressive string of success at New England Dragway continued on Friday, as the defending Funny Car world champion rolled to the provisional No. 1 spot at the TascaParts.com NHRA New England Nationals presented by Bandero Premium Tequila.
Billy Torrence (Top Fuel) and Mason McGaha (Pro Stock) are also provisional No. 1 qualifiers in their respective categories at the sixth race of the 2021 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series season.
Hagan has won the past three events at the track in Funny Car and put himself in a good position to win a fourth straight race at New England Dragway, powering to the top with a run of 3.891-seconds at 331.53 mph in his 11,000-horsepower DSR Performance Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye. If it holds, it would give Hagan, who is looking for his first win of the 2021 campaign, his first No. 1 qualifier of the year and 41st in his career.
“When you put Don Schumacher Racing Performance parts and (crew chief) Dickie Venables together, that’s what you get out here,” Hagan said. “We’ve won this race three years in a row and we’re trying to make it four, but you know that’s hard to do. There’s something about being up here in New England, and Dickie has a great combo for the car and it drives great. Everything went really well, so we’re happy.”
Gainesville winner J.R. Todd was the only other driver to make a three-second run in Funny Car, taking the second spot with a pass of 3.976 at 324.05. Blake Alexander is currently in the third position after going 4.040 at 317.94.
Torrence raced to the No. 1 position in Top Fuel, going 3.744 at 324.98 in his 11,000-horsepower Capco Contractors dragster. It was an impressive showing from Torrence, who can claim his second No. 1 spot in 2021 and fifth in his career if it holds up. Torrence is also searching for his first career victory at New England Dragway, while his son, Steve, has back-to-back wins at the track. Justin Ashley, NHRA’s Rookie of the Year in 2020, was the only other driver in the class to make a three-second run, posting a strong 3.774 at 322.58. Doug Kalitta sits in the third position thanks to his pass of 4.002 at 252.80.
In Pro Stock, young standout Mason McGaha drove to the top spot on Friday in his Harlow Sammons Chevrolet Camaro thanks to a solid run of 6.538 at 210.28. It was a noteworthy run for the 19-year-old second-year driver, as he would earn his first career No. 1 qualifier should it hold. It’s the latest triumph for McGaha, who is fourth in points and has advanced to two final rounds in 2021. Aaron Stanfield is currently second after going 6.545 at 210.83 and defending world champ Erica Enders, who won in Epping in 2017, rounds out the top three after going 6.548 at 210.24. It is Pro Stock’s first appearance at the track since 2018.
Qualifying continues Saturday at the TascaParts.com NHRA New England Nationals presented by Bandero Premium Tequila at 12:30 p.m. ET.
Friday's results after the first one of three rounds of qualifying for the ninth annual TascaParts.com NHRA New England Nationals presented by Bandero Premium Tequila at New England Dragway, sixth of 22 events in the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series. Qualifying will continue Saturday for Sunday's final eliminations.
Top Fuel -- 1. Billy Torrence, 3.744 seconds, 324.98 mph; 2. Justin Ashley, 3.774, 322.58; 3. Doug Kalitta, 4.002, 252.80; 4. Antron Brown, 6.610, 88.28; 5. Brittany Force, 6.663, 87.22; 6. Shawn Langdon, 8.534, 86.09; 7. Steve Torrence, 8.562, 78.47; 8. Joe Morrison, 8.784, 87.76; 9. Mike Salinas, 9.062, 62.46; 10. Leah Pruett, 16.497, 37.37.
Funny Car -- 1. Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger, 3.891, 331.53; 2. J.R. Todd, Toyota Camry, 3.976, 324.05; 3. Blake Alexander, Ford Mustang, 4.040, 317.94; 4. Ron Capps, Charger, 7.303, 93.34; 5. John Force, Chevy Camaro, 7.431, 85.24; 6. Cory Lee, Mustang, 7.479, 89.55; 7. Alexis DeJoria, Camry, 7.603, 88.35; 8. Jim Campbell, Charger, 7.735, 83.46; 9. Tim Wilkerson, Mustang, 7.863, 82.65; 10. Bob Tasca III, Mustang, 8.332, 77.51; 11. Terry Haddock, Mustang, 12.863, 80.87; 12. Robert Hight, Camaro, 14.152, 69.47.
Not Qualified: 13. Cruz Pedregon, broke.
Pro Stock -- 1. Mason McGaha, Chevy Camaro, 6.538, 210.28; 2. Aaron Stanfield, Camaro, 6.545, 210.83; 3. Erica Enders, Camaro, 6.548, 210.24; 4. Matt Hartford, Camaro, 6.551, 210.37; 5. Dallas Glenn, Camaro, 6.554, 210.28; 6. Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.556, 210.47; 7. Troy Coughlin Jr., Camaro, 6.589, 209.72; 8. Val Smeland, Camaro, 6.603, 209.17; 9. Alan Prusiensky, Dodge Dart, 6.657, 207.98; 10. Richie Stevens, Camaro, 6.676, 209.26; 11. Deric Kramer, Camaro, 7.126, 151.77; 12. Kenny Delco, Camaro, 11.414, 86.35; 13. John Gaydosh Jr, Camaro, 14.821, 87.89; 14. Bob Benza, Camaro, 16.604, 45.53; 15. Chris McGaha, Camaro, 35.927, 22.74; 16. Kyle Koretsky, Camaro, broke.
SUPER STOCK Q-1
1 1053 FSS/C Robert Tagliareni Sr, Oakland NJ, '20 Cam 8.672 9.65 -0.978
2 198 FSS/D Steve Szupka, Northhampton PA, '18 Camaro 8.952 9.90 -0.948
3 1519 SS/EA Jerry Hatch, Wales ME, '70 Challenger 9.425 10.35 -0.925
4 1027 GT/TC Marc LaBrecque, Whately MA, '00 S-10 10.187 11.10 -0.913
5 175 FSS/C Michelle Bongiovanni, Parsippany NJ, '08 8.763 9.65 -0.887
6 106 FSS/G Jeff Roell, Danbury CT, '10 Mustang 9.412 10.25 -0.838
7 1883 GT/TD Eric Merryfield, Andover MA, '96 Dakota 10.475 11.30 -0.825
8 16 GT/JA Joe Lisa, Vernon NJ, '87 Camaro 9.980 10.80 -0.820
9 1960 SS/AH Al Smyth, Uxbridge MA, '68 Barracuda 8.631 9.45 -0.819
10 1318 SS/FA Joe Hertline, Mercy NY, '67 Camaro 9.657 10.45 -0.793
1 1049 F/SA Ron Infantino, Hasbrouck Hights NJ, '69 C 10.742 11.85 -1.108
2 1152 B/S Ed Bednaz, Terryville CT, '69 Nova 10.106 11.20 -1.094
3 1616 J/S Sam Murray, Lakeville MA, '72 Cutlass 11.279 12.35 -1.071
4 1614 B/SA Barry Parker, Southampton MA, '70 Camaro 10.253 11.25 -0.997
5 1783 B/SA Allison Doll, Douglas MA, '98 Firebird 10.263 11.25 -0.987
6 1543 B/SA Angelo DiTocco, Mahopac NY, '97 Firebird 10.294 11.25 -0.956
7 14 A/S Bob Broadbent, Hampton NH, '69 Camaro 9.997 10.95 -0.953
8 1074 FS/D Stephen Smyth, Uxbridge MA, '09 Challenger 9.650 10.60 -0.950
9 1690 C/SA Elroy Dame, Eliot ME, '69 Road Runner 10.462 11.40 -0.938
10 1499 A/SA Jim Boudreau, Tewksbury MA, '69 Camaro 10.072 11.00 -0.928