POMONA, Calif. (Feb. 10, 2017) – Doug Kalitta claimed the provisional no.1 qualifier for the Circle K Winternationals at Auto Club Raceway of Pomona earlier this evening.
Kalitta was the last pair in the Top Fuel class to see the track in his Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster. His Jim Oberhofer-tuned machine blazed down the track in a career-best 3.697 seconds at 325.69 mph to lead the stout Top Fuel field. Rainfall cancelled the second session of qualifying.
"After running that .69 in testing in this Mac Tools Toyota dragster, I can tell you I really wanted to come here and run it officially," said Kalitta. "We love coming here. The track is always maintained well. After our season-ending win last season, we hope to take this all the way and make it two straight."
This effort continues a strong run at Auto Club Raceway for Pomona for the Mac Tools driver. He was the only Top Fuel driver to earn final round appearances at both Pomona events last season. He has two career wins and six no.1 qualifiers at the facility, with his most recent no.1 qualifier coming in the the spring of 2014.
If the no.1 qualifier run sticks through the remainder of Saturday qualifying, it will be the second straight no.1 qualifer for Team Kalitta at Pomona. Kalitta's teammate, J.R. Todd, took the Top Fuel no.1 qualifer in the fall with a track-best 3.680 second run.
The entire Kalitta Motorsports fleet had a great start to the 2017 season. Kalitta's rookie Top Fuel teammate, Troy Coughlin Jr., had a solid 3.730 second pass to place fourth overall. In Funny Car, Alexis DeJoria earned one bonus point in the first session and ranks fourth. J.R. Todd's official Funny Car debut slotted him one spot behind his teammate in the fifth position.
The remainder of nitro qualifying will begin at 1:00pm local time tomorrow.