TOPEKA, Kan. – Brittany and Courtney Force raced to No. 1 qualifying positions Saturday at the NHRA Kansas Nationals at Heartland Park Topeka, the first time sisters have shared the top qualifying stage at an NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series event.
Brittany posted a career-best performance of 3.746 seconds with a track record speed of 329.75 mph in her 10,000-horsepower Castrol Edge dragster to claim her first career No. 1 in Top Fuel.
Courtney set both ends of the Funny Car track record with a 4.009 at 322.96 in her Traxxas Ford Mustang to earn her second No. 1 of the season and fifth of her career.
Brittany will face veteran driver Luigi Novelli to open Sunday’s 11 a.m. eliminations and Courtney will race Dale Creasy Jr. Both drivers are pursuing the landmark 100th female pro victory in NHRA history during a season that has seen female drivers in each pro class have success.
“I’m so excited,” said Brittany, who with a win would also become the 100th different driver to earn an NHRA Top Fuel victory. “It shows that all our hard work is finally paying off after struggling last year. To be able to come out here and go number one, I didn’t expect that. I am so proud of my entire team. I hope our first win comes this weekend. That would be awesome.”
Courtney is continuing the momentum from a runner-up finish last weekend in Atlanta, where she was emotional after losing a close race to teammate and series points leader Robert Hight.
“It was a tough weekend for me,” Courtney said. “I was going for my first win of the season, a spot in the Traxxas Shootout and the 100th win for women on top of it all. I am glad we have found some consistency and that was a career-best run. There’s a lot of pressure for us girls out here right now. And it’s cool to see me and Brittany going to the top and Alexis (DeJoria, Funny Car) and Erica (Enders-Stevens, Pro Stock) are also running great. It’s our time to shine as women out here and this is the perfect place to do it. Hopefully we can keep the ball rolling.”