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Toyota Gazoo Racing North America NHRA Epping Post-Qualifying Report – 06.03.23

Ron Capps leads the Toyota Funny Car contingent from fourth

EPPING, N.H. (June 3, 2023) – Antron Brown earned his first no. 1 qualifier of the year at Epping on Saturday. The weather conditions forced the cancelation of the final qualifying session, but Brown and his team capitalized on the first two sessions – earning five of the six bonus points. For Brown, it is his 50th no. 1 qualifier in Top Fuel competition. Shawn Langdon had a strong run as well to the second qualifying spot.

In Funny Car competition, Ron Capps led Toyota in qualifying as he earned the fourth qualifying position.

Toyota Post-Qualifying Recap

NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series

New England Dragway

Race 7 of 21


NameCarQualifying PositionFirst Round Opponent
Antron BrownMatco Tools Toyota Top Fuel Dragster1st (3.729)BYE
Shawn LangdonBounty Hunter Kalitta Air Toyota Top Fuel Dragster2nd (3.738) T. Schumacher
Steve TorrenceCapco Contractors Toyota Top Fuel Dragster8th (4.191)A. Prock
Justin AshleyPhillips Connect Toyota Top Fuel Dragster10th (4.807)D. Mercier
Doug KalittaMac Tools Toyota Top Fuel Dragster12th (6.711)L. Pruett


NameCarQualifying PositionFirst Round Opponent
Chad Green*BondCoat Ford Mustang Funny Car1st (4.100)J. Campbell
Ron CappsNAPA Auto Parts Toyota GR Supra Funny Car4th (4.483)B. Tasca
J.R. ToddDHL Toyota GR Supra Funny Car8th (6.374)C. Pedregon
Alexis DeJoriaBandero Tequila Toyota GR Supra Funny Car10th (6.816)R. Hight

(*non-Toyota driver)


ANTRON BROWN, Matco Tools Toyota Top Fuel Dragster, AB Motorsports

TF Qualifying Result: 1st

How does earning your 50th No. 1 feel to you?

“It feels really good today. What made it feel so good is how our team was so good to adapt to all of the different conditions. Friday, we were no. 2. We dropped a hole early, so we missed out on being no. 1 there. We were still able to get two bonus points, which adds up, because we are tied for sixth. Today, we are able to bounce back and be one of the few cars that made it down because the track got super tight, super good, but there was no give. We had to try to make the car give; Brian (Corradi), Mark (Oswald), Brad (Mason) and all of the Matco, Lucas Oil boys – they are good at adapting in positions like that. The hard part is we never have run in conditions like that, so you had to get the right power level, back it down. We went for a safe run to get down, so we could prepare, because we knew the conditions were going to be like this tomorrow on race day, so we can make laps, so we can get down, and pick at it and make it better and better each lap. The track was good enough to run mid-to-high 60s, if you hit it right, but you can hit it so wrong, like a lot of other teams did. That being said, just super proud of my guys, it makes me feel good to see where we are at and that we can adapt to so many different circumstances.”

It has been since 2017 since your last number one. Have you been thinking about it?

“Our main focus throughout this whole journey that we’ve been on is to constantly get better. We never really harped on qualifying. We always try to qualify good, but I cannot tell you when there have been times when we go up there and we say ‘hey, we’ve got this thing on mean and we are going for no. 1. It’s either going to smoke the hoops or we are going no. 1.’ I could never say that. We were always progressing to get better and be a top five to top three qualifier. That has been our goal. We have been achieving that each different race – even the last race. I think we qualified number five or something like that. We’ve just been working on that steadily, getting better and better, and pick up those bonus points. We were the quickest Q2 and the second quickest or third quickest of Q3 at our last race. Our main focus is to be at the top of the heap once we get to races. This race fell in the spot where we made the right adjustments where we were able to be number one and we picked up five bonus points this weekend out of two rounds of qualifying. Our whole focus is to get better like that because qualifying sets you up for a good spot but doesn’t mean you are going to win the race. We won three races last year, and we already won a race this year, so we just want to qualify in the right spot to give us the best chance and we want to get better. Do we want to qualify no. 1 a lot more? Heck yeah, but we just have to keep working to know how we got there and just not throw shots at it.”

RON CAPPS, NAPA Auto Parts Toyota GR Supra Funny Car, Ron Capps Motorsports

FC Qualifying Result: 4th

What are your thoughts on the weekend so far?

“These are conditions that we saw this weekend are not what you think you would see the New England Nationals, this time of year. This is probably the most adverse conditions that we’ve seen in the first round of the 2Fast2Tasty Challenge. That is why I’m always bragging about our team and how well they adapt to everything. This is some of the most extreme conditions the nitro cars have seen. I love this kind of stuff being thrown at teams and drivers. We couldn’t finish the 2Fast2Tasty, and conditions are going to be pretty close to the same on Sunday or whenever we have to run the race. Luckily, this track is a great surface. It kind of goes into the whole vibe of this track. It’s old school. You feel like you’ve gone back in time when you come here, so in a way this fits the mold of being at this raceway.”

About Toyota

Toyota (NYSE:TM) has been a part of the cultural fabric in North America for more than 65 years, and is committed to advancing sustainable, next-generation mobility through our Toyota and Lexus brands, plus our more than 1,800 dealerships.

Toyota directly employs more than 48,000 people in North America who have contributed to the design, engineering, and assembly of nearly 45 million cars and trucks at our 13 manufacturing plants. By 2025, Toyota’s 14th plant in North Carolina will begin to manufacture automotive batteries for electrified vehicles. With more electrified vehicles on the road than any other automaker, Toyota currently offers 22 electrified options.

Through the Start Your Impossible campaign, Toyota highlights the way it partners with community, civic, academic and governmental organizations to address our society’s most pressing mobility challenges. We believe that when people are free to move, anything is possible. For more information about Toyota, visit

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of


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