By blasting to a stout 3.687-second pass on Saturday afternoon, Leah Pruett earned the No. 3 position to start race day on Sunday at her hometown track. The Redlands, Calif. native drew her former Nostalgia Funny Car competitor Jim Maroney in round one and sent him packing when she dispatched a 3.659 E.T., which held up to be low of race day. The quarterfinal round featured a matchup between Pruett and Shawn Reed. Pruett previously held a 5-1 record over her opponent, and she extended it to 6-1 when she powered her Mopar machine straight down the groove for the win. In the semifinals, Pruett and Austin Prock left the line evenly, but Prock pulled ahead for the win when Pruett’s dragster lost traction early into the run.

“Our heads are held very head high. It’s not easy to manage the amount of horsepower that this team is able to create, but how we manage it will reflect the potential that this team is capable of performing with throughout the year. We’ve found our groove, each crew guy is getting more comfortable with the car, and the results have shown that. This is a much better beginning to the season than we had last season, and we expect a good result at the end. For now, we’re extremely excited about what we can continue to pick away at. Managing the horsepower and the potential is going to be the highlight. We’re not struggling; we’re seeing a lot of great potential. Going into Phoenix next, we definitely plan on finishing the job there in our Mopar dragster.”

The Results:
E1: 3.659 E.T. at 328.14 MPH defeated Jim Maroney 4.503 E.T. at 179.71 MPH
E2: 3.685 E.T. at 326.40 MPH defeated Shawn Reed 4.466 E.T. at 169.23 MPH
E3: 4.927 E.T. at 140.69 MPH defeated by Austin Prock 3.678 E.T. at 330.63 MPH

Larry Chen

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Don Schumacher Racing