Steve Torrence leads Top Fuel qualifying at SpringNationals

BAYTOWN, Texas (AP) Steve Torrence led Top Fuel qualifying Friday night in the NHRA's SpringNationals at Royal Purple Raceway, breaking both ends of the track record with a 3.724-second run at 329.42 mph.

''Unbelievable and awesome to do it here at home,'' said Torrence, from Longview. ''We went over and did the tour at NASA yesterday, and maybe (crew chief Richard) Hogan picked up some tips. ... Right at the lights, it started chucking the belt off of it and I had my hands full, but it was a good lap, and we'll head into race day with a good lap under our belts.''

Torrence won the season-opening Winternationals.

Doug Kalitta was second at 3.743 and 324.36, and Clay Millican third at 3.743 and 323.12.

Tim Wilkerson topped the Funny Car series, and Greg Anderson was the fastest in Pro Stock.

Wilkerson had a career-best and track-record time of 3.899 at 327.59 in his Ford Shelby Mustang. Wilkerson, the 2004 SpringNationals winner, won this year in Arizona anbd North Carolina.

Anderson powered his Chevy Camaro to a 6.589 at 210.41. He also has two victories this season.

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