Ron Capps Takes Top Honors During Qualifying at Brainerd International Raceway

No. 1 Qualifier

BRAINERD, Minn. (August 19, 2023) – Ron Capps scored his second No. 1 qualifier of the 2023 NHRA Camping World Series season on Saturday at the NHRA Brainerd Nationals, the penultimate event before the Countdown to the Championship playoffs begin. The three-time and defending Funny Car world champion earned the pole on the strength of his 3.894 at 330.23 MPH run from the weekend’s second qualifying session on Friday to earn his 38th No. 1 qualifier overall and second at Brainerd International Raceway. With the exception of the Charlotte Four-Wide Nationals, the owner-driver of the NAPA Auto Parts Toyota GR Supra hasn’t qualified lower than sixth in 2023.

“You never take anything for granted. We saw Bob Tasca run 3.92 ahead of us and ‘Guido’ (Dean Antonelli, crew chief) went into the box and made some adjustments,” said Capps of the weekend’s final qualifying session. “I think he was going to try and run 3.88 but obviously it didn’t stick. This yellow (No. 1 qualifier) hat is such a tribute to how good our NAPA guys are. There is not a lot you can do as a driver. You pretty much stage the car and keep it in the groove.”

As the No. 1 seed, Capps will face Jim Campbell during the opening round of eliminations on Sunday. Capps, a four-time finalist in 2023, is seeking his second victory of the season as he looks to reclaim the Funny Car point lead, currently occupied by Matt Hagan. A 59-point margin separates Capps from his former teammate.

With 74 event wins, the driver of the NAPA Supra is on the cusp of reaching a milestone 75th victory at a facility where he has a long history of success. Capps is a six-time winner at Brainerd International Raceway, second only to John Force in the category. A cold front is expected to come in overnight, presenting teams with drastically different conditions on Sunday, but the NAPA team has proven that they can be successful no matter what is thrown at them.

“Tomorrow is going to be epic,” said Capps, currently ranked second in the Funny Car standings. “It’s going to be some pretty incredible times and speeds, but the equalizer will be the cool conditions.”

Eliminations for the NHRA Brainerd Nationals kicks off on Sunday, Aug. 19 at 11:00 a.m. CT.

Qualifying Results:
Q1: No Time (did not make the run)
Q2: 3.894 E.T. at 330.23 MPH (three bonus points for quickest run of the session)
Q3: 4.051 E.T. at 262. 74 MPH
Q4: 5.302 E.T. at 138.48 MPH