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Tony Schumacher Leads Top Fuel Qualifying

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(credit: Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images)

(credit: Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images)

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BRAINERD, Minn. (AP) — Tony Schumacher took the Top Fuel lead Friday in qualifying for the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals at Brainerd International Raceway.

Driving a dragster with the new cockpit canopy, Schumacher had a 3.791-second run at a track-record 323.97 mph. Schumacher used the enclosed cockpit, approved by NHRA on Tuesday, on both qualifying attempts.

“For the car to go out there, not miss a beat, and qualify No. 1 is a perfect situation,” Schumacher said. “The canopy takes some getting used to. You’re driving as though you have snow on the windshield and you wiped off the center of it to see through it, except you’re going 320 mph. It’s phenomenal, though. It’s safe, and that’s the whole point.”

Tim Wilkerson topped the Funny Car field, Erica Enders led in Pro Stock, and Hector Arana Sr. in Pro Stock Motorcycle.

Wilkerson had a track-record time of 4.049 at 307.16 in a Ford Mustang.

Enders, a two-time winner this year, powered her Chevrolet Cobalt to a 6.550 at 210.37.

Arana finished in 6.882 at 192.63 on a Buell.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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