ST LOUIS – On Friday night the conditions cooled off and fans were treated to one of the quickest Funny Car sessions in NHRA history with seven different drivers running in the three second range including John Force and Robert Hight. The last time that many Funny Car drivers posted three second runs in one session was the Friday night session at Sonoma Raceway in July. Brittany Force was the fourth quickest Top Fuel dragster of the Friday night session and all four JFR drivers will look to improve on their times on Saturday with a favorable weather forecast on the horizon.

After the first qualifying session today at the AAA Insurance Midwest Nationals Courtney Force was in the No. 4 qualifying position followed by her father John Force, No. 5 and Robert Hight, No. 8. In the second session John Force and the Lucas Slick Mist Chevrolet Camaro SS Funny Car jumped on the three second bandwagon lighting up the scoreboard with a 3.985 second run at a then track record speed of 322.42 mph. He was sitting in the No. 2 provisional qualifying position and eventual shuffled back to the No. 5 spot at the end of the night.

Right after Force made a major move up the qualifying sheet Courtney Force’s Traxxas Chevrolet Camaro SS Funny Car pulled up beside Robert Hight and his AAA Chevrolet Camaro SS Funny Car. Both Funny Cars launched hard and it was Hight who took off down the track and recorded a 3.994 second run at 313.22 mph to move up to the No. 6 spot.

For Hight and his team the positive move was welcome but they know they missed an opportunity to grab some of the valuable qualifying bonus points.

“The second run was what we were hoping to do in the first session. I don’t think we would have been that quick but a clean run would have had us further back in the second session and I think we could have run quicker. That was a decent run and I think we can improve on that tomorrow. We are right in the thick of the qualifying order,” said Hight, the 2010 Midwest Nationals Funny Car winner.

Traxxas Chevrolet Camaro SS Funny Car pilot Courtney Force is No. 10 after the first day of qualifying at the 4th Annual AAA Insurance NHRA Midwest Nationals at Gateway International Raceway. In the first round she posted a 4.058 at 307.37 mph to temporarily go to the No. 1 position. By the end of the first qualifying session, the 27-year-old Traxxas driver sat comfortably in the No. 4 spot.

“Our Traxxas team went out and ran a 4.05 in the first session. It was a solid pass in the heat. We really put down one of the top runs ahead of the pack. We were fourth in the session and tried to push the car hard when the conditions cooled off in Q2,” Force said.

In the second session, the 2012 Auto Club Rookie of the Year attempted to improve on her 4.058 ET. Conditions had improved for the second pass, but unfortunately Force’s Chevy put down too much power and smoked the tires at about 100 feet.

“We pushed the car hard and it went up in tire shake. We wanted to push it to the limit to see what kind of number the car could hold. We had it lined up to run in the 3s and it was on track but went into tire shake pretty quick. We can learn from tonight’s run and we’re hoping tomorrow we can improve,” Force said.

In 2014 at Gateway International Raceway Force qualified in the No. 4 spot for the third consecutive year and picked up her seventh NHRA national event win. She dismissed Bob Tasca III, Del Worsham, John Force and finally Matt Hagan to move from the No. 4 spot in the Funny Car points to the No. 2 position, right behind her father. She became the first female to win back-to-back Funny Car races (Dallas and St. Louis).

The Monster Energy Top Fuel dragster team and Brittany Force did an excellent job of putting their Charlotte qualifying issues behind them. The third year team made the 5th quickest run of the first session. The run was equal to Shawn Langdon and Steve Torrence’s 3.837 seconds and they were separated by speed for qualifying position.

In the Friday night session Force’s Monster Energy dragster made the fourth quickest run of the session and settled into the No. 5 provisional qualifying spot with a 3.794 second, 324.28 mph run.

“Two solid passes down the race track is a good way to start. That 3.79 has us in a good spot. The whole Monster Energy team is really happy about today. Our plan for the Countdown is make consistent runs that go straight down the race track. We don’t want to lose any qualifying runs. We want to make the most of every single run. So far this is a good start,” said Force.