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Friday, February 22, 2013
Antron Brown takes qualifying lead in Top Fuel

Associated Press

CHANDLER, Ariz. -- Antron Brown raced to the qualifying lead in Top Fuel on Friday at the NHRA Arizona Nationals at Firebird International Raceway.

One week after walking away from a crash at the season-opening event in Pomona, Calif., Brown powered his new dragster to a leading time of 3.765 seconds at 314.83 mph.

"I can't say enough for my team," Brown said. "They came out here with a brand new car, and it was planned that we made a half-lap on the first pass to make sure that everything was right. Then we came back (for the second run), and the car left good.

"But I had to remember, that when you go one-to-one at halftrack (with the clutch lockup), this track always makes your car sashay. And I just lifted a little bit early because I felt the car go from side to side.

"But it was a phenomenal run, and I couldn't be happier. To come out here and on the second run of the new car and be number one, you can't ask for much more than that."

Johnny Gray (Funny Car) and Mike Edwards (Pro Stock) also were qualifying leaders at the NHRA Drag Racing Series event near Phoenix.

Gray paced the Funny Car field with a 4.034 at 313.80 in a Dodge Charger, while Edwards was quickest in Pro Stock, covering the distance in a track record time of 4.498 at 213.13 in a Chevy Camaro.

Qualifying continues Saturday.