Pomona, CA – Kalitta Looks To Extend Winternationals Streak…Doug Kalitta will be looking to extend his Winternationals winning streak to four this weekend. In addition to winning in 2020 (over Austin Prock), 2019 (over Steve Torrence) and 2018 (over Tony Schumacher), Kalitta also was the event runner-up in both 2016 and 2017, giving him an 18-2 round win-loss record at one of the sport’s biggest events over the past five years. In addition, Kalitta won the 2019 NHRA Finals, giving him three straight overall wins at the Auto Club Raceway. Should he win the Winternationals, the Mac Tools Toyota driver would become just the fifth driver in history to register 50 career Top Fuel wins. Along with the 50-win milestone, a win would put Kalitta just two victories away from tying Antron Brown and Joe Amato for third all-time.
SoCal Connection Looking For Hometown Success…After advancing to the Funny Car semifinals or finals in each of the last three races, Alexis DeJoria and the Orange, California-based DC Motorsports team will look to score their first victory since opening shop for the pandemic-shortened 2020 season at their home track. The Winternationals were the very first drag racing event DeJoria ever attended at age 16 as a Venice Beach native. Team owner and two-time world champion Del Worsham elected to keep the team in his hometown, making it the last full-time NHRA team based in the area. Both DeJoria and Worsham will be looking for their first Winternationals victory. In addition to advancing to four semis or beyond in the last six races, their Bandero ROKiT Toyota Camry has qualified in the top two in five of nine races this season.
LEICESTER, NY – The Northeast Outlaw Pro Mod Association (NEOPMA) summer break will come to an end this week as the eighth-mile Pro Mod group heads to New York’s Empire Dragway for the inaugural Northeast Outlaw Pro Mod Challenge, July 30-31. A field of over 20 Pro Mod drivers will be on hand to put on a show for the doorslammer-hungry local fans.
“This is going to be a super race with lots of new racers, a great facility, fantastic track prep, warm hospitality and increased payouts,” said John Mazzorana, founder and president, NEOPMA. “We expect about 20-plus cars. Some will come early for testing and should be prepared for lots of great racing and fun.”
While NEOPMA is new to Empire Dragway, its presence in the Northeast has been well-established since the 1990s. The group has evolved and grown to accommodate new technology, performance trends and racer preferences. Engine combinations utilizing roots blowers, screw blowers, ProChargers, turbochargers, or nitrous oxide are all allowed, leading to a diverse, competitive field.
Sparkling Ice Spiked® to be featured as Pruett’s primary partner at Pomona 1 and Bristol NHRA Events
BROWNSBURG, IN – Leah Pruett and Don Schumacher Racing are pleased to announce the Sparkling Ice® brand has expanded its ongoing relationship with Pruett and drag racing’s winningest organization to include the primary sponsorship of Pruett’s Top Fuel dragster at two events during the 2021 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series season. Sparkling Ice Spiked® hard seltzer branding will prominently flank the sides of Pruett’s 11,000-horsepower machine at the rescheduled NHRA Winternationals (Pomona 1), the final leg of the three-race Western Swing, and the NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals in Bristol, Tenn., the fifth of seven Countdown to the Championship events.
Sparkling Ice Spiked is a full-flavored hard seltzer made with 4% alcohol, zero sugar, 1g carbs, and is gluten-free and only 80 calories. The brand launched in November 2020 and part of the launch has included a marketing campaign which featured Pruett as a brand ambassador. Pruett, who has enjoyed the Sparkling Ice brand’s support since 2015, was selected to be the first Sparkling Ice Spiked representative, and the 2021 Top Fuel championship-contender couldn’t be more thrilled.
ENNIS, TX – The expansion of the 37th annual NHRA Texas Fall Nationals, which includes over a week of Texas-themed events dubbed the Stampede of Speed, has created the opportunity for fans from across the country to descend on Texas Motorplex, October 2-10. The multi-use facility, located just 35 minutes from Dallas and Fort Worth, recently announced the Stampede of Speed and its weeklong schedule of non-racing activities, concerts, educational and business events. Tickets and sponsorship opportunities are available to fans and potential marketing partners from across the country.
“There are some details that are still being worked out, but there is no doubt that the Stampede of Speed will be one of the biggest multi-day events to happen in the Metroplex in years,” said Andy Carter, Texas Motorplex General Manager. “We will be hosting events for diehard motorsports fans, non-traditional motorsports fans and people that have never even heard of the Texas Motorplex. We want to introduce our facility to a new audience as well as host some exciting events that we think will draw people into Texas from all over the country.”
THREE-TIME DEFENDING TOP FUEL WORLD CHAMP STEVE TORRENCE HAS CHANCE TO SWEEP THE WESTERN SWING AT LUCAS OIL NHRA WINTERNATIONALS IN POMONA
POMONA, CA — Steve Torrence has an opportunity to make NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series history at this weekend’s Lucas Oil NHRA Winternationals presented by ProtectTheHarvest.com at Auto Club Raceway at Pomona, but that’s nothing new for the Top Fuel standout who has won three straight world championships.
Torrence can become just the eighth driver in NHRA history to sweep the three-race Western Swing and first since 2009 if he can win this weekend in Pomona. He’s already picked up wins in Denver and Sonoma in back-to-back weekends to open the Western Swing in his 11,000-horsepower Capco Contractors dragster, and Torrence has a chance to break out the brooms at Auto Club Raceway at Pomona. He’s had great memories at the track in recent years, including his first championship when he won at the track to finish off his historic sweep of the Countdown to the Championship, but Torrence is only focused on the immediate task at hand, and that’s making a good run on Friday to open qualifying.
FREDERICKSBURG, VA – Following the completion of the Professional Drag Racers Association (PDRA) Summer Shootout presented by Ty-Drive, the fields have been set for the inaugural Summit Racing Equipment PDRA ProStars race. The specialty race rewarding frequent, top-performing PDRA racers will take place during Virginia Motorsports Park’s Night of Fire this Saturday, July 31.
“Racers have been fighting all season for a chance to compete in the ProStars race,” said Tyler Crossnoe, racer director, PDRA. “We even had late-round pairings at the Summer Shootout a couple weeks ago that determined the final spots in the eight-car fields. This is a brand-new program for us, and the racers proved they want to be a part of this race in a big way.”
The top 8 racers in ProStars points qualify to compete in the event, which requires no entry fee and will pay out over $55,000 in prize money, with a winner-take-all format in all classes. ProStars points were determined using the final three races of the 2020 season and the first five events of 2021.
Sonoma, CA – Exciting final round showdowns for two Mopar Dodge//SRT Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) pilots, Matt Hagan in Funny Car and Leah Pruett in Top Fuel, at the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) Sonoma Nationals resulted in runner-up finishes for both drivers with margins of victory in each race of just two-thousandths of a second.
Coming off his first event win of the 2021 NHRA Camping World series season last weekend at Denver’s Dodge//SRT Mile-High Nationals Presented by Pennzoil, Hagan began his race day from the No. 3 position on the Funny Car eliminations ladder and battled through a competitive field to advance to his second consecutive Sonoma Nationals final round appearance. Hagan drove his Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye to wins against Jeff Diehl and Blake Alexander to advance to the semifinal round for a rematch of the Denver final versus Alexis DeJoria. Hagan powered his way to the win over DeJoria to send his Mopar machine to his second straight final round, a third this season, and the 68th of his career.