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September 01, 1985

Joe Amato returned to last year's championship form, and Bruce Allen claimed the richest purse in Pro Stock drag racing history, at the U.S. Nationals at Indianapolis.

Amato, 40-year-old reigning world champion from Old Forge, Pa., led the qualifying in the unlimited Top Fuel class with a quarter-mile time of 5.508 seconds at 259.36 m.p.h. That gave him a .027-second advantage over defending champion Don Garlits of Ocala, Fla., with two more sessions remaining today.

Allen, 34-year-old rookie from Lapeer, Mich., earned $15,000 payoff for winning the Mr. Gasket Pro Stock Challenge, a preliminary to Monday's finals, which will crown champions in 10 different competition classes.

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