Perennial Pro Mod front runner Randy Weatherford laid down a 3.605-second pass at 210.11 mph to take the provisional No. 1 spot in Outlaw Pro Mod presented by FuelTech and PJS Racing on Friday at the U.S. Street Nationals presented by M&M Transmission. Weatherford set low E.T. in the first of two Friday qualifying sessions, leading a field of 41 other drivers in the class at the Bradenton Motorsports Park event.
“I tell you, this is a really tough field,” Weatherford said. “I feel good about it. I struggled down here at the [Snowbird Outlaw Nationals] in December with this new car. I had some problems with it and we didn’t race it. We took it back to the shop and worked on it. Hat’s off to RK Racecraft and Pro Line. I wouldn’t be here today with this hot rod without these guys. It feels good to lead this pack. Right now, I’m sitting on top of the pole. Come get it.”
Driving his ProCharged WS Construction ’22 Camaro, Weatherford also recorded a 3.722 at just 174.23 in the second session. A spark plug issue prevented the Virginia driver from making a quicker pass under the lights.
“If you look at the weather conditions, I think we could’ve probably repeated what we ran in Q1,” Weatherford said. “The weather wasn’t as good as it was this morning. I think we were going to run basically the same number, .60 or .61. We weren’t looking to pick up, just stay where I was at: on the pole.”
Weatherford’s goal for the rest of the weekend – including Saturday’s three planned qualifying sessions – is continuing the consistency he’s had through pre-race testing and Friday qualifying.
“If you’ve watched me all week, I’ve been running in the low 3.60s,” Weatherford said. “Consistency is going to win this race. The rest of the guys are floating in the 3.67 down to 3.63 range. We’re looking for the car to go out there and repeat itself and run real close to the numbers that it’s been running all week.”
Weatherford, who raced a Pro Nitrous car for years before moving to Pro Boost in 2019, is looking for a positive start to his 2023 season.
“We’ve won some world titles, an EOPM championship, and a Quick 8 championship,” Weatherford said. “I won the PDRA ProStars race last year, and I have a better car this year than I had last year. Let’s see what happens.”
Twenty-five of the 42 drivers who made qualifying attempts dipped into the 3.60-second range. Multi-time Pro Extreme world champion Jason Scruggs took his screw-blown “Mississippi Missile” ’23 Camaro to the No. 2 spot with a 3.615 at 210.93. Rob Cox is the No. 3 qualifier with a 3.617 at 205.66 in his ProCharged ’17 Camaro after recording a career-best 3.59 in Thursday testing. Kurt Steding is fourth in his Todd Tutterow-tuned, screw-blown P2 Contracting ’20 Camaro with a 3.619 at 209.88. Puerto Rico’s Raymond Matos rounds out the top 5 with a 3.625 at 208.71 in his ProCharged ’20 Camaro. Mike Tokarz currently sits on the bump spot with a. 3.73 at 213.30.
A solid field of 26 cars in Pro 275 presented by M&M Transmission is currently topped by Jason Collins, who’s debuting Scott Tidwell’s new screw-blown ’69 Camaro. He posted a 3.678 at 204.60, the only run in the 3.60s. Mo Hall drove his brand-new, Fulton-powered ’20 Corvette to a 3.708 at 203.89 to take the No. 2 spot. Marcus “The Axman” Birt in Tommy Youmans’ ProCharged “Salvage Title” Mustang is third with a 3.717 at 199.40.
LIMITED DRAG RADIAL
Limited Drag Radial presented by TBM Brakes and Pro Line Racing saw several drivers run in the 3-second zone. Paul Gargus was the quickest of the bunch with a 3.866 at 194.80 in Scott Tidwell’s ’69 Camaro. Richard Reagan in his ’91 Mustang is second with a 3.91 at 192.14, and Scott Kincaid is third with a 3.921 at 188.70 in his ’69 Camaro.
New York’s Jamie Stanton raced to the provisional No. 1 spot in X275 presented by Rife Sensors and PST Driveshafts with a 4.149 at 171.77 in his ’00 Camaro. Kenny Hubbard, who won the Snowbirds at Bradenton in December, is second with a 4.174 at 168.66 in his ProCharged ’74 Nova. DJ McCain went to the No. 3 spot behind the wheel of his new nitrous-fed ’06 Corvette, posting a 4.192 at 174.01.
A pair of Florida-based drivers ran 4.446 to lead Friday qualifying in Ultra Street presented by TRZ Motorsports and Innovative Racecraft. Brian Keep got the top spot – and the class E.T. record – based on speed with his 157.58 in his ’98 Camaro. Jason Spina was close, though, going 156.66 in his ’90 Mustang. Shawn Pevlor is third with a 4.451 at 153.11 in his ’92 Mustang.
The provisional low qualifier in Limited 235 presented by SPA Tools and ICE Ignition is Brad Schehr in his ’89 Mustang with a 4.887 at 138.63. Merenda Burris qualified No. 2 with a 4.921 at 143.38 in her ’00 Camaro. Eddie Ramirez in his ’88 Mustang is third with a 4.994 at 137.88.
Jeff Ensslin is the provisional low qualifier in Outlaw 632 presented by Voss Wheelie Bars with a 4.438 at 160.81 in his ’92 Lumina. Mike Murphy is second with a 4.462 at 162.80 in the Voss family’s ’09 Cobalt, and Patrick Patterson sits third in his ’41 Willys with a 4.735 at 159.31.
Qualifying at the U.S. Street Nationals presented by M&M Transmission will continue Saturday beginning at 11 a.m., with additional sessions set for 3 p.m. and 6 p.m.