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Hagan and Dodge Power Brokers Back in Winner’s Circle with Victory at NHRA New England Nationals

Epping, NH — Tony Stewart Racing took home their third Wally trophy of the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) Camping World Drag Racing Series season after Funny Car driver Matt Hagan powered his Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat from the No. 1 qualifier position to a fourth win in five years at New England Dragway.

“We’re very proud to see Matt Hagan drive the Dodge Power Brokers Funny Car to the winner’s circle at the New England Nationals and earn a third Wally this season,” said Tim Kuniskis, Dodge Brand Chief Executive Officer – Stellantis. “It’s a pleasure to see Matt and Tony Stewart Racing continue to embody Dodge//SRT performance and highlight what Dodge Power Brokers and Direct Connection can do for enthusiasts and their rides.”

“It was just a great weekend,” said Hagan who earned his 42nd career Funny Car victory with his team’s performance at the New England Nationals. “I can’t say enough about Dickie (Venables, crew chief). Nothing really needs to be said – our Dodge Power Brokers Charger SRT Hellcat speaks for itself. Mike Knutson, Alex Conaway, all the boys wrenching on the car, they just do a great job. It’s one of those things I don’t even think about anymore because each and every one of those guys has earned my trust with my life. So when I crawl in the car, I don’t think about anything other than just leaving the starting line.

Hagan qualified atop the eliminations ladder for a second consecutive event and a third time this season with a 3.878 second run at 332.51 mph, then turned on the win lights against No. 14 seed Dale Creasy Jr, had a bye run in the quarterfinals, and defeated No. 10 seed J.R. Todd to advance to his sixth final elimination round of the year.

For a third time in eight events Hagan lined up his 11,000-horsepower Dodge Power Brokers Charger SRT Hellcat against Robert Hight in a final, then wasted no time powering to a 3.922 sec./ 327.98 mph lap to capture the first victory over his nemesis this year. Hagan’s third win of the season helps him maintain the lead in the Funny Car championship standings with 41-point advantage over Hight who sits in second place with three wins of his own.

Fellow Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat driver Cruz Pedregon continued his streak of solid qualifying performances with another top-five starting position, his seventh in eight events, by taking his Snap-on Tools Funny Car for a 3.901 second lap at 324.28 mph to earn the No. 4 spot on the eliminations ladder.

He faced off against No. 11 seed Bob Tasca III in the opening round and posted a 3.948 sec. pass at 323.74 mph to beat his opponent and advance to the quarterfinals to race No. 10 seed J.R. Todd. Pedregon had the starting line advantage and maintained the lead to half-track when a loss of traction ruined his run and gave his opponent the opportunity to get past him.

In Top Fuel action, Dodge Power Brokers dragster pilot Leah Pruett and her TSR crew were seeking a strong performance at the New England Nationals to help break a string of early exits that have plagued the team since the start of the season. They overcame some qualifying challenges with traction issues on the first lap and then a stuck throttle at the end of the burnout in the second session that forced Pruett to continue down the track and abandon the run. Her third qualifying run was drama free with a solid 3.780 second pass at 323.50 mph to put the Dodge Power Brokers dragster 11th on the Top Fuel eliminations ladder and set up a first round matchup against No. 6 seed Tony Schumacher.

The Dodge//SRT HEMI®-powered machine had a solid opening round run with a 3.796-second/ 322.11 mph elapsed time to defeat Schumacher and give her lane choice in the quarterfinals against No. 3 seed Mike Salinas. However, Pruett had an uncharacteristically late launch against her opponent (a 0.125-second reaction time to a 0.081-sec. start) and her 3.807/321.27 run wasn’t enough to contend for the win against Salinas’ 3.746 sec./328.62 mph effort. Despite the difficult start to the season, Pruett sits just outside the top-ten in the Top Fuel standings in an 11th place tie with Antron Brown.

The NHRA will race again next weekend at the traditional Father’s Day weekend event, the Thunder Valley Nationals on June 17-19 at Bristol Dragway in Tennessee, for the ninth of 22 national events this season.

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