Chicago, IL – The Windy City provided the perfect backdrop this weekend for what would become a record-breaking event. The NHRA Nitro Funny Car class experienced its fastest field ever, with the bump spot set at 4.100 after the final round of qualifying. The 4.100 bump spot proved to be just out of reach for the Beal Racing AutoAnything nitro funny car.
The Beal Racing AutoAnything team had its fair share of ups and downs over the course of the NHRA Route 66 Nationals and was on the outside looking in after qualifying was completed. The team elected to skip the first session of qualifying on Friday afternoon in hopes that the day’s later session would provide better conditions for a quicker run. Unfortunately, as the team prepared for the second qualifying pass they discovered a fuel system issue that would render the car unsafe for racing. Owner and crew chief, Chuck Beal, made the difficult decision to forego the Friday evening session and focus on Saturday’s two qualifying opportunities.
Saturday brought about some excitement for the team as driver Brandon Welch ran a career best 4.182 in qualifying session number three. However, the car crossed the centerline and took out a timing cone. The pass was disqualified, leaving the team with only one more chance to make the 16 car field.
In the final qualifying session, the car slowed to an early-shutoff 4.760. Despite missing the field, Brandon Welch noted that the progress made this weekend is something the team is going to be able to build upon.
“We have only had a few full passes with this setup and we are still learning how to adjust the new equipment,” Brandon explained. “I am really pleased with the performance we had in the third qualifying pass. The car is responding to our tuning inputs and accelerating harder than ever before. We are excited for our next stop in Sonoma and can’t wait to continue moving forward with this setup.”
ABOUT BEAL RACING
San Diego-based Beal Racing campaigns a 300+ mph nitro funny car on the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series. The team is owned by Chuck Beal and driven by 2016 rookie and Chuck’s grandson, Brandon Welch. After 45 years in drag racing, veteran driver Beal handed over the reins of the family race car to grandson, Brandon in 2015. Beal Racing is sure to be a focus of media and fan attention with a new driver continuing a storied family racing legacy. To learn more about Beal Racing visit www.bealracing.com, or tune in to NHRA competition on Fox and Fox Sports 1.