Topeka, KS (May 21, 2017) – Clay Millican drove the Parts Plus/Great Clips/University of Northwestern Ohio Top Fuel dragster to a semifinal finish for the second time this year at the 2017 Menards NHRA Heartland Nationals presented by Minties.
Millican came into race day in the eighth qualifying spot with a 3.727 elapsed time at 327.03 mph.
In Round One Millican faced off against Terry McMillen. The pair had nearly identical reaction times: .071 to .076. While there was a small fire after the engine pushed some rods out, Millican took the win with a 3.732/304.67 to 3.761/321.50.
In Round Two Millican came up against Tony Schumacher. In a nail-biting pedalfest, Millican crossed the finish line first and won with a 5.428/143.41 to 8.413/64.85.
“That may have looked exciting on TV, but it was bit of a slide job going on, driving all over the race track,” Millican said. “It looks cool, but not necessarily always fun when you’re behind the wheel trying to keep it straight. But it was really cool to beat The Sarge.”
In the semifinals Millican was once again paired up against Steve Torrence. Torrence had the starting line advantage with a .018 reaction time to Millican’s .111. As Millican crossed the finish line, the motor of the Parts Plus/Great Clips/UNOH exploded into flames. Thanks to the quick actions of the NHRA Safety Safari, Millican was uninjured and the fire was put out. Torrence took the win with a time of 3.718/329.34 to Millican’s 3.822/316.08.
“Man, Stevie Torrence definitely lit the score board up and we lit the race track up,” said Millican. “This was the first big boomer this team has ever had. I’m sure it will be highlight reel material, but that’s not the way we want to make highlights.”
Next up for the Stringer Performance team is the New England Nationals in Epping, New Hampshire on June 2 – 4, 2017. It is the first of four races in a row for the teams of the Mello Yello NHRA Drag Racing Series.
“This team is moving in the right direction. We’re going to show up in Epping with a brand new race car and the attitude to go out there and win all four rounds,” said Millican.