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post #21 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-08-2019, 03:58 AM Thread Starter
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A Winning 2019 NHRA New England Nationals Race Recap!



Jul 7, 2019
The 2019 #NewEnglandNats are complete, with Matt Hagan taking home the Wally in Funny Car with his MOPAR Express Lane Dodge Hellcat teammates!

- Matt Hagan notches third consecutive NHRA New England Nationals Funny Car victory
- Hagan’s Epping win marked his second triumph of 2019 and 31st overall
- Antron Brown (Top Fuel) and Ron Capps (Funny Car) advanced to the quarterfinals and each moved up one spot in the Countdown to the Championship point standings

...on to the Western Swing and the Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Powered by Pennzoil!

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post #22 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-20-2019, 12:14 AM Thread Starter
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Pedregon Powers Dodge//SRT Mopar to Provisional No. 1 Spot in Funny Car

Pedregon Powers Dodge//SRT Mopar to Provisional No. 1 Spot in Funny Car at Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil

Cruz Pedregon takes provisional pole aboard Snap-On Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car through Friday’s opening two rounds of qualifying at Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil
Leah Pritchett posts second-fastest qualifying lap behind wheel of her HEMI-powered 1320 Angry Bee Dodge Mopar Top Fuel Dragster
Matt Hagan tops opening qualifying session in Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car
Mopar CAP “Assemble Your Future” initiative hosts more than 40 enrolled students and instructors at Bandimere Speedway

New @dodgeMoparMotorsports Instagram channel features Dodge//SRT Mopar drivers in NHRA action on “Thunder Mountain”


July 19, 2019 , Morrison, Colorado -

Cruz Pedregon raced his Mopar-powered Snap-On Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car to the provisional No. 1 qualifying position Friday evening at the Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil at Bandimere Speedway near Denver.

Pedregon and Ron Capps posted the fastest two runs of the second session to lead six Mopar-powered Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car drivers in the preliminary ladder for Sunday’s elimination rounds. Pedregon’s pass of 4.002 seconds at 317.42 mph narrowly edged out Capps’ lap of 4.005/316.97.


“It feels great to go out and be No. 1 in our Snap-On Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat,” said Pedregon, the 1993 and 2013 Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Funny Car winner. “I’m really happy for Dodge and Mopar. What they do for the sport is tremendous. I was part of the Mopar Block party last night for the first time and it was an incredible event. I really want to pay them back for their investment in me throughout the year. We’ve had some ups and downs, but I think that the needle is pointing up for us. The Snap-On Dodge is coming around. Bandimere Speedway has been really good to me through the years. It’s good to be No. 1 after Friday night.”

Matt Hagan paced the opening session, debuting his new Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) 2020 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car to capture three qualifying points, while Jim Campbell, Tommy Johnson, Jr. and Jack Beckman made qualifying passes to put them in the provisional field.

In Top Fuel, reigning Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals champion Leah Pritchett qualified the DSR 1320 Angry Bee-schemed Dodge Mopar Top Fuel dragster second with her run of 3.839 seconds at 330.31 mph in Friday’s second session.

Higher Education at 300 mph

The Mopar Career Automotive Program (Mopar CAP) “Assemble Your Future” initiative continued on Friday at Bandimere Speedway. More than 40 enrolled students and instructors from Araphoe Community College, Lincoln Tech and WyoTech were introduced to the world of the NHRA and given the opportunity to connect with representatives from 20 area FCA US dealers.

Mopar CAP Students heard from reigning Top Fuel Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil champion Leah Pritchett, two-time Funny Car world champion Matt Hagan and Hagan’s assistant crew chief, Mike Knudson before touring the Don Schumacher Racing pit areas.
The Mopar CAP “Assemble Your Future” initiative is visiting four NHRA national events in 2019, including the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil in Reading, Pennsylvania, scheduled for mid-September. For more information on the Mopar CAP program, visit: www.MoparCap.com.



[B @dodgeMoparMotorsports on Instagram[/B]
Hagan’s Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car is carrying the @dodgeMoparMotorsports logo on its hood as part of the channel’s formal launch during race weekend. The @dodgeMoparMotorsports Instagram channel will share content capturing Dodge//SRT Mopar drivers in action in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, NHRA Sportsman grassroots racers competing in classes such as Factory Stock Showdown, Stock and Super Stock, as well as additional motorsports series such as the Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Concept’s recent run in the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.

Rick

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post #23 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-20-2019, 11:00 PM Thread Starter
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Inside the Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil



Jul 20, 2019
See the reveal of Matt Hagan's new 2020 Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car and go behind the scenes at the Mopar Big Block Party Presented by Pennzoil in downtown Golden, Colorado.

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post #24 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-21-2019, 02:58 AM Thread Starter
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Pritchett Takes “Angry Bee” 1320 Top Fuel Dragster to No. 2 Starting Spot

Pritchett Takes “Angry Bee” 1320 Top Fuel Dragster to No. 2 Starting Spot at Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil

Leah Pritchett rockets “Angry Bee” Mopar Dodge 1320 Top Fuel car to No. 2 starting position at Bandimere Speedway in Morrison, Colorado, near Denver
Pritchett will attempt to capture her second consecutive win at the Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals
Tommy Johnson Jr. runs to No. 2 spot in Funny Car in his Mopar-powered Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat
Charger SRT Hellcat drivers Cruz Pedregon and Ron Capps qualify in third and fourth spots, respectively
Matt Hagan races his 2020 Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car to seventh qualifying position
Field of six Mopar-powered Charger SRT Hellcat racers to battle for Funny Car win on Sunday
New @dodgeMoparMotorsports Instagram channel features Dodge//SRT Mopar drivers in NHRA action on “Thunder Mountain”


July 21, 2019 , Morrison, Colorado -

Leah Pritchett buzzed her “Angry Bee” Mopar Dodge 1320 Top Fuel dragster all the way to the No. 2 starting position heading into elimination rounds on Sunday at the 2019 Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil at Bandimere Speedway near Denver.

Pritchett, No. 1 qualifier last year at Denver, came oh-so-close to repeating that feat during an impressive qualifying outing in which steadily improved her performance in each session. Pritchett collected two bonus points on Friday and added another pair for being second-quickest in Q3 on Saturday with a 3.816-second elapsed time at 318.77 mph.


An hours-long rain delay pushed the final qualifying session to late Saturday evening, with 72-degree track temps providing prime conditions for posting low numbers. The Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) driver took full advantage, uncorking a 3.761-second elapsed time at 315.19 mph, which briefly earned Pritchett the pole before she was knocked down a spot.

The defending Top Fuel champ at Denver, Pritchett banked six bonus points in qualifying and will draw Terry Totten in round one as she attempts to take her “Angry Bee” to a second consecutive win on “Thunder Mountain.”

Tommy Johnson Jr. was quickest of a pack of six Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat drivers to make the Sunday field at Bandimere Speedway. The event is marking the 31st year with FCA US title-rights support, the longest continuous running sponsorship in NHRA and one of the longest in all of motorsports.

Johnson moved his DSR Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car up seven spots in his first qualifying shot on Saturday, rising from No. 13 to the sixth spot. In the final qualifying session, Johnson recorded his quickest run of the weekend at 3.978/317.72 to lock down the No. 2 position and earn two bonus points. A two-time runner-up at Bandimere Speedway, Johnson will look to capture his first Denver win starting with an opening-round date with Jeff Diehl.

Two-time Funny Car World Champion Cruz Pedregon soared to the provisional No. 1 spot in his Mopar-powered Snap-On Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car on Friday evening thanks to a pass of 4.002 seconds at 317.42 mph. Pedregon maintained his spot after the first qualifying session on Saturday, but was shuffled down the ladder during the final session and denied his shot to reclaim the pole after more rain showers prevented Cruz and three other drivers from making their final qualifying passes. He will start third on Sunday.

That same fate befell NAPA Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat driver Ron Capps. Second quickest in Funny Car on Friday on the strength of a 4.005/316.97 pass, Capps struggled in Q3 and was hoping to move back up the ladder in Q4 until rain washed away any chances of a No. 1 spot. He settled for the No. 4 spot and will meet Todd Simpson in round one

Sporting brand-new graphics with his 2020 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car, Matt Hagan jumped from No. 8 after the first day of qualifying up to the fifth position with a run of 4.054/283.07 in Saturday’s first session. Hagan struggled in Q4 and wrapped up qualifying in the seventh slot. Winner at the most recent NHRA event in New Hampshire, Hagan will face DSR teammate Jack Beckman in the opening round as he seeks back-to-back wins, and his first ever on “Thunder Mountain.”

No. 14 after Friday’s two sessions, Beckman climbed the qualifying charts to put his Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat in the tenth spot. Jim Campbell will race his Charger SRT Hellcat from the No. 12 spot and meet Bob Tasca III in round one.


[B @dodgeMoparMotorsports on Instagram[/B]
Hagan’s Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car is carrying the @dodgeMoparMotorsports logo on its hood as part of the channel’s formal launch during race weekend. The @dodgeMoparMotorsports Instagram channel will share content capturing Dodge//SRT Mopar drivers in action in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, NHRA Sportsman grassroots racers competing in classes such as Factory Stock Showdown, Stock and Super Stock, as well as additional motorsports series such as the Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Concept’s recent run in the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.

Tune-in Info
Sunday Live coverage from the Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil will air on FOX Sports 1 (FS1) from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. ET on Sunday, July 21. Three hours of eliminations coverage will be broadcast live on the national FOX Network starting at 3 p.m. ET on Sunday.


Dodge//SRT Mopar Notes & Quotes: NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series:

Leah Pritchett, Mopar Dodge 1320 Top Fuel Dragster
Qualified No. 2, will face No. 15 Terry Totten

Friday: (4.213 seconds at 213.87 mph – Q1); (3.839/321.35 – Q2)
Saturday: (3.816/318.77 – Q3); (3.761/315.19 – Q4)

“We’re feeling awesome going into race day. The Dodge Mopar mountain magic is definitely showing its face. It’s awesome to have three solid runs out of four. We’ve been chipping away at it. We were a little light on the front end, which made it exciting to drive on that final round. We went into Q4 either smoking the tires or going for low E.T., and we were just a couple thousandths behind (No. 1 qualifier) Steve Torrence at half-track, and we feel good. Things are coming together. The fans have been out of this world, and the team has done a phenomenal job. We can’t wait for Sunday, race day. These moments of running quick passes in challenging conditions are what we live for. We're looking forward to running well on the mountain and going rounds on Sunday like we know how to do.”

Tommy Johnson Jr., Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
Qualified No. 2, will face No. 15 Jeff Diehl

Friday: (7.235 seconds at 89.20 mph – Q1); (6.619/97.96 – Q2)
Saturday: (4.091/300.86 – Q3); (3.978/317.72 – Q4)

“It’s tough to run up here and Friday proved that. Everybody struggled to try and get a handle on the tune-up. Luckily, we were able to get four qualifying runs in with the rain showers and refine the tune-up and get a handle on it. Tonight’s Q4 run was probably in a little bit better conditions than we’ll see tomorrow but it’s going to be close. It’s supposed to be nice and cool tomorrow. I was a little worried about running (E1) at 11:00 a.m. because we don’t have any data from 11:00 a.m., but this will be close. I’m excited. We hit the tune-up pretty good on that last run and we should have a solid car for tomorrow.”

Ron Capps, NAPA Auto Parts Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
Qualified No. 4, will face No. 13 Todd Simpson

Friday: (5.245 seconds at 141.71 mph – Q1); (4.005/316.97 – Q2)
Saturday: (6.925/91.27 – Q3); (No Run – Q4)

“I always feel good going into race day, no matter the conditions. But, this has been an adverse weekend as far as crew chiefs and having to adapt. We saw super-hot temperatures Friday, and then Saturday, we had a storm come in, the temperature dropped and then the rain came in again and it just got pushed back to where the last two pairs of cars didn’t get to run in Funny Car. We were hoping to get a shot at the track after watching a couple of cars go 3.97, and we didn’t get that chance and ended up finishing fourth. But, no matter what, (crew chief Rahn) Tobler will be on it, and I just have to do my job, and hopefully, we’ll have another good weekend.”

Matt Hagan, Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car
Qualified No. 7, will face No. 10 Jack Beckman

Friday: (4.324 seconds at 232.43 mph – Q1); (9.089/80.22 – Q2)
Saturday: (4.054/283.07 – Q3); (13.239/76.54 – Q4)

“We’ll take it; top-half of the field, lane choice. It’s always tough up here on the mountain but we’ve got a new look and a new feel to the car and we’ll get after it tomorrow on race day.”

Jack Beckman, Infinite Hero Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
Qualified No. 10, will face No. 7 Matt Hagan

Friday: (7.389 seconds at 93.95 mph – Q1); (7.299/101.90 – Q2)
Saturday: (4.151/296.96 – Q3); (4.099/308.92 – Q4)

We’ve been racing each other early far too much this year, and that’s just a by-product of one of us qualifying in the bottom half. I wish I could say ‘we’ve got lots of data to comb over tonight to figure this out for tomorrow,’ but we don’t have hardly any Denver data to comb over. And, conditions tomorrow will be radically different than they were at 10:00 p.m. tonight. We have data from last year. We ran well in different conditions. We’re going to have to go back and lean on some of that stuff. But I’ll tell you what I’m proud of. Friday night, this thing went out there and broke the x-member out of the chassis and could’ve really affected our race car chassis. The guys did some welding, did some parts replacement, rescaled the car, and we came out here Saturday and went out down the track two times.”

Rick

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post #25 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-21-2019, 10:31 PM Thread Starter
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Johnson Thunders to First-ever Denver Victory at Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals

Johnson Thunders to First-ever Denver Victory at Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil

Dodge//SRT Mopar racer Tommy Johnson Jr. runs to Funny Car victory at Bandimere Speedway in Morrison, Colorado, near Denver
Win is second consecutive for a Dodge driver at the brand’s headline event, second of year for Johnson and sixth of season by a Dodge//SRT Mopar Funny Car racer
Johnson climbs to No. 2 spot in Funny Car standings, leads three Mopar-powered Dodge//SRT drivers in top five
Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat driver Johnson cheered on by Honorary Starter and Wish Kid Porter Johnson of Arvada, Colorado
Defending event champion Leah Pritchett races “Angry Bee” Mopar Dodge 1320 Top Fuel dragster to quarterfinals showing at Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil
Matt Hagan exits in first round carrying new 2020 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody graphics package
Denver race kicks off opening week of Dodge Dragstrip Showdown
David Bogner and Austin Williams race to Dodge Top Finisher honors at Denver
New @dodgeMoparMotorsports Instagram channel features Dodge//SRT Mopar drivers in NHRA action on “Thunder Mountain”


July 21, 2019 , Morrison, Colorado -

Tommy Johnson Jr. ended his 35-year quest for a victory in Denver, driving his Mopar-powered Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car to the win at the Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil on July 21, 2019, at Bandimere Speedway in Morrison, Colorado.

Johnson’s win on Sunday, his 19th career NHRA victory and second of 2019, was also the sixth triumph by a Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat pilot in 2019, and fifth in the last eight events for a Mopar-powered competitor. It’s also the second consecutive win by a Dodge driver at the brand’s headline event, following Leah Pritchett’s 2018 Top Fuel win.


The run to victory in the event sponsored by Dodge and presented by Pennzoil, both partners of Johnson’s car owner Don Schumacher Racing (DSR), came in his 51st career final. His first final appearance came at Bandimere back in 1984, when at age 15 he raced to a runner-up finish while competing in Super Gas. Two years ago, Johnson lost in the Funny Car final, but Sunday he was not going to be denied.

Johnson, cheered on by event Honorary Starter and four-year-old Wish Kid Porter Johnson (no relation) from the local chapter of the Make-A-Wish Foundation, started Sunday by driving his Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car to an opening round win over Jeff Diehl to setup a quarterfinal matchup with fellow DSR and Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car driver Jack Beckman. A starting-line advantage was the difference in pushing Johnson past Beckman into his seventh semifinal of the season. Next in his way was Cruz Pedregon, another Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat foe, and Johnson raced to another consistent lap in the John Collins’-tuned Hellcat to advance to his third final of 2019.

Johnson was undefeated in seven previous meetings with Bob Tasca III and made it eight straight, and first in a final, by storming down the track with a final round pass of 4.102 seconds at 308.50 to capture his first Bandimere triumph.

Leah Pritchett returned to Thunder Mountain on a mission to become the fifth driver in Top Fuel to score back-to-back wins over the course of the 31-year title rights sponsorship by FCA US at Bandimere Speedway, and the first since Joe Amato accomplished it in 1999 and 2000.

After dominating last year’s Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals by qualifying No. 1 and powering to a Sunday triumph, Pritchett looked to make it two straight triumphs in the DSR “Angry Bee” Mopar Dodge 1320 Top Fuel dragster after qualifying second in the field. She opened her defense with a solid opening-round victory with her lap of 3.877 seconds at 310.98 mph to eliminate Terry Totten and advanced to the second round facing Clay Millican for the 18th time in her career. Millican got the jump at the starting line and Pritchett struggled to overtake him after losing a cylinder early in her run, ending her day prematurely.

Cruz Pedregon admitted Friday after leading the Funny Car field in qualifying after two sessions that Bandimere Speedway has always been good to the driver of the Snap-On Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat. The two-time NHRA Funny Car world champion and two-time Denver winner chased his first triumph of 2019 from the third position on the ladder. He defeated Terry Haddock in the opening round and followed that by eliminating John Force in the quarterfinal to reach his first semifinal of 2019. Pedregron grabbed the starting-line advantage, but lost traction early in the run and could not recover in time to track down Johnson.

Three-time Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Funny Car champion Jack Beckman had this weekend’s event circled on his calendar for quite some time. His DSR Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat has been one of the fastest cars in the competitive NHRA Funny Car class over the course of the last eight events, and the 2012 world champion has been itching to score his first Wally of 2019.

Beckman began Sunday with an all-DSR/all-Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car matchup with the series’ most recent winner, Matt Hagan. Despite trailing Hagan off the starting line, Beckman raced his way around him to meet Johnson in the second round. The two met most recently in the semifinals at Norwalk, with Beckman prevailing, but on Sunday in Denver, it was Johnson that turned on the win light on the strength of his starting line advantage. Beckman continues to hold the fifth position in the championship standings.

Two-time Funny Car world champion Hagan was looking to carry the new 2020 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody graphics package with a flared-out feel on the DSR machine to his first career triumph at the Thunder Mountain venue on Sunday.

Hagan was quickest off the starting line in his fifth first round match up versus a DSR teammate in 2019, but his machine began to slow three quarters of the way through the race and came up short of advancing with his run of 4.177 seconds at 239.27 mph. The two-time 2019 Funny Car winner ranks eighth in the championship standings with four races remaining before points are reset for the “Countdown to the Championship.”

Capps, the 2009 Denver Funny Car champion, was looking for another productive Sunday in Denver and began his race day with a first-round matchup versus Todd Simpson. The two-time 2019 winner powered the NAPA Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat down the track in 4.078 seconds at 309.91-mph to dispatch Simpson and advance to round two. Against Bob Tasca III in the quarterfinals, Capps controlled the lead early, but a mechanical malfunction caused his machine to slow, enabling Tasca to drive around for the win to halt Capps’ run for a second consecutive run to the finals at Bandimere.

Cattleman’s Cut Dodge driver Jim Campbell had his sponsor’s spokesperson and event Grand Marshal, Carmen Electra, on hand to lend support, but was dealt a first-round loss by Tasca.

Dodge Dragstrip Showdown Debuts in Denver
Fans at Bandimere Speedway had the chance to go head-to-head behind the wheel of Dodge Challenger SRT Demon simulators in the debut of the second year of the Dragstrip Showdown.

Hosted all weekend in the Dodge//SRT display on Manufacturers Midway, the Dragstrip Showdown allows participants to test their skills and compete for bragging rights, with top run times listed on the DodgeGarage website. Winners will be announced after the NHRA Finals in Pomona in November, with top racers with the best ETs earning prizes including Dodge Challenger SRT Demon remote control cars and gift cards for Dodge swag.


[B @dodgeMoparMotorsports on Instagram[/B]
Hagan’s Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car carried the @dodgeMoparMotorsports logo on its hood as part of the channel’s formal launch during race weekend. The @dodgeMoparMotorsports Instagram channel will share content capturing Dodge//SRT Mopar drivers in action in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, NHRA Sportsman grassroots racers competing in classes such as Factory Stock Showdown, Stock and Super Stock, as well as additional motorsports series such as the Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Concept’s recent run in the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.

Mopar Dodge//SRT NHRA Sportsman Spotlight
David Bogner and Austin Williams collected Dodge Top Finisher honors in the Super Stock and Stock classes, respectively, at the Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil.

Bogner qualified No. 15 in his Mopar-fueled 1992 Dodge Daytona and battled his way through to the quarterfinals in Super Stock before a mechanical malfunction prevented him from making the call for the semifinals. Bogner was still able to join his father, Marlin, who also competed in Denver, as a member of the Dodge Top Finisher club.

Waxahachie, Texas, resident and decorated NHRA Sportsman racer Williams qualified tenth in his 1972 Plymouth Duster 340 and advanced to round two in Stock Eliminator, adding to his collection of Dodge Top Finisher trophies.

The Dodge Top Finisher award, now in its third year, awards $500 to Stock Eliminator and Super Stock drivers who advance the furthest behind the wheel of a Mopar-powered Dodge, Chrysler, or Plymouth race car at all 24 NHRA national events.

Dodge//SRT Mopar NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series: Notes & Quotes

Tommy Johnson Jr., Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 2 Qualifier – 3.978 ET)

Rd.1: (.097-second reaction time, 4.156 seconds at 268.54 mph) beat No. 15 Jeff Diehl (.150/8.776/97.67)
Rd.2: (.076/4.059/316.01) beat No. 10 Jack Beckman (.087/4.092/316.30)
Rd.3: (.079/4.056/311.49) beat No. 3 Cruz Pedregon (.080/4.099/166.72)
Rd. 4: (.092/4.102/308.50) beat No. 5 Bob Tasca III (.059/4.158/302.14)

“Winning races is great, but winning the Dodge Mile-High Nationals, to me today, is my biggest victory ever. Thirty-five years ago in 1984 when I was a kid I got runner-up. I got runner-up three more times in three different categories. I wanted to win this race so bad, and I did it in my Dodge Charger Hellcat today. I knew we had a great race car and if we could control it on the track with the sun being out, we’d be good. The team did a great job. We’re so much of a better team than we have been in the past and we’ve really grown as a team. This has been the best season ever and I think we’re just getting started.”

“The Bandimeres are such a great family. I started coming here as a kid. My dad raced up here, I’m a Division 5 guy, so I ran the divisional race here a lot and got to know the Bandimeres really well."

On Wish Kid Porter Johnson:
“It speaks volumes of our whole program and what Doug Chandler is doing. Make-A-Wish is such a great organization and he funds this team and gives it away to raise awareness for that organization. We have Wish Kids out every Saturday and to see Porter come out today and also to see the sponsors get involved – that was a Mopar/Dodge decision to have a Make-A-Wish Kid as the honorary race starter – and it was cool to see everyone get behind this. It’s obvious what a great foundation Make-A-Wish is and all of the great things they do for the kids, so to be a part of it is very humbling.”

Leah Pritchett, Mopar Dodge 1320 Top Fuel Dragster
(No. 2 Qualifier – 3.761 ET)

Rd.1: (.080-second reaction time, 3.877 seconds at 310.98 mph) beat No. 15 Terry Totten (.202/4.052/296.05)
Rd.2: (.059/3.988/260.71) lost to No. 7 Clay Millican (.058/3.861/320.13)

“We came into the Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals with a hard, heavy charge up the hill. We felt good about making three good runs in qualifying and picking up those valuable points. Unfortunately, we had real high clutch wear at mid-track in that race with Clay Millican and it just started dropping cylinders. Our plan is to take this momentum we’ve created here on Thunder Mountain straight to Sonoma.

“Overall, representing Dodge and Mopar at this event in front of all of these great fans is a highlight of our season. I’m really impressed with the team’s preparation for this weekend. It proves we are the team that everyone expects us to be, and we’re looking to show it the rest of the way.”

Ron Capps, NAPA Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 4 Qualifier – 4.005 ET)

Rd.1: (.105-second reaction time, 4.078 seconds at 309.91 mph) beat No. 13 Todd Simpson (.089/4.356/269.94)
Rd.2: (.083/5.597/130.49) lost to No. 5 Bob Tasca III (.079/4.097/313.29)

“This is such a hard place to do well at, and when you do go to the final round like we did last year, you feel that much better about conquering this mountain. It’s that tough racing here at Bandimere. We had a great first round and didn’t want to beat ourselves and unfortunately, we lost lane choice to (Bob) Tasca for the quarterfinals. But, the lane wasn’t an issue, the clutch might have grabbed the motor a little more than Tobler wanted it to, and you can’t make a mistake against a team that’s as good as Tasca is right now. We’re going to Sonoma, and that’s maybe my favorite track, and I can’t wait.”

Jack Beckman, Infinite Hero Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 10 Qualifier – 4.099 ET)

Rd.1: (.090-second reaction time, 4.084 seconds at 316.23 mph) beat No. 7 Matt Hagan (.075/4.177/239.27)
Rd.2: (.087/4.092/316.30) lost to No. 2 Tommy Johnson, Jr. (.076/4.059/316.01)

“It’s kind of the story of our year. When we lose, our run is usually good enough to win the other races in that round, but you are not going to survive on woulda, coulda, shoulda. We are still top-five in points. We have been a strong car throughout the year. We’ve had our ups and downs, but I feel like we are sorting this thing out. Denver is always an anomaly. Sometimes great cars do terrible up here and vice versa, just because it’s so hard to tune here. We did okay. We need to do better.”

Matt Hagan, Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car
(No. 7 Qualifier – 4.054 ET)

Rd.1: (.070-second reaction time, 3.958 seconds at 326.24 mph) lost to No. 10 Jack Beckman (.060/4.016/322.04)

“It’s always a challenge up here on the mountain. You always have to change things up to make the cars run up here, and we struggled a little bit with our fuel curve this weekend. I think going back down to Sonoma we’ll be in good shape. Once we get off the mountain, we tend to do well. But, we made a lot of progress up here. We had a good race car first round. Our new Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody was running really good early, we just had a pan pressure issue. We’ll dive into it and figure it out. I was feeling like we were going to win that one, and it’s just a helpless feeling when that thing goes silent, and you can hear him drive around you. I’m looking forward to Sonoma and Seattle and turning some more win lights on.”

Up Next: NHRA Sonoma Nationals
The Western Swing continues next week with the 32nd NHRA Sonoma Nationals, scheduled for July 26-28 at Sonoma Raceway in Sonoma, Calif. Capps leads the Dodge//SRT Mopar contingent back into action looking for his fifth career triumph at the track.

2019 NHRA Championship — Point Standings After Round 14 of 24
(Season Wins in Parentheses)


NHRA Funny Car
1. Robert Hight (4) – 1159
2. Tommy Johnson, Jr., Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat (2) –1010
3. John Force – 958
4. Ron Capps, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat (2) – 927
5. Jack Beckman, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat – 904

6. Bob Tasca III (1) – 865
7. J.R. Todd (1) – 857
8. Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat (2) – 794
9. Tim Wilkerson – 724
10. Shawn Langdon (1) – 727

NHRA Top Fuel
1. Steve Torrence (8) – 1407
2. Brittany Force (1) – 852
3. Antron Brown – 839
4. Doug Kalitta (1) - 831
5. Clay Millican – 813
6. Mike Salinas (2) – 763
7. Leah Pritchett, Mopar HEMI – 714
8. Richie Crampton (1) – 666
9. Scott Palmer - 613
10. Terry McMillen – 607

Rick

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Hagan Powers to Runner-up Finish in NHRA Sonoma Nationals

Dodge//SRT Mopar Driver Hagan Powers to Runner-up Finish in NHRA Sonoma Nationals

Dodge//SRT Mopar racer Matt Hagan stormed to his fourth 2019 final at Sonoma Raceway in Sonoma, California
Tommy Johnson, Jr. maintains No. 2 spot in Funny Car standings, leads three Mopar-powered Dodge//SRT drivers in top five
Jack Beckman qualifies third, advances to second round driving Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
Leah Pritchett exits in first round; remains seventh in Top Fuel championship standings
Mike Kirby wins first NHRA event in Stock Eliminator and John Irving reached the final in Super Stock to score Dodge Top Finisher honors at Sonoma
dodge MoparMotorsports Instagram channel features Dodge//SRT Mopar drivers in NHRA action

July 28, 2019 , Auburn Hills, Mich. -

For the second time in the last three NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series events, two-time world champion Matt Hagan reached the Funny Car final racing his Mopar-powered Dodge SRT Charger Hellcat to a runner-up finish at the NHRA Sonoma Nationals on July 28, 2019, at Sonoma Raceway in Sonoma, California.

Hagan’s charge to the final marked the fourth consecutive event where a Dodge//SRT machine was racing for the win. Last week’s Dodge Mile-High Nationals winner Tommy Johnson, Jr. reached the semifinals and continues to rank second in the championship standings, leading two other Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car drivers inside the top-five.


The run to Hagan’s 58th career final began with a first round contest versus reigning Funny Car champion J.R. Todd. Hagan took the holeshot advantage and motored to victory with his run of 3.958 seconds over a tire-smoking Todd. In round two, it was a familiar foe as Hagan faced off with Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) teammate and fellow Dodge//SRT driver Jack Beckman. In the fastest race of the session, Hagan defeated Beckman and continued his quest for his first victory at Sonoma Raceway.

He made a solo run in the semifinals after John Force was not able to stage his car and Hagan’s lap of 3.995 seconds earned him lane choice in the final versus Robert Hight. In the duo’s eighth career finals meeting and second in 2019, Hagan wasn’t able to overcome a starting-line advantage for Hight and settled for his 27th career runner-up finish.

Johnson continued his career-best season behind the wheel of the Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car. After qualifying fifth, he was chasing his third triumph of 2019 and faced fellow Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car racer Cruz Pedregon in the opening round. Pedregon left early and handed Johnson the automatic victory to setup a rematch of last week’s final with Bob Tasca III in round two. Just like last weekend in Denver, Johnson again turned on the win light with a smooth run of 4.031 seconds at 318.47 mph to advance to his ninth semifinal of the season. Johnson’s consecutive round win run was halted at six when he couldn’t drive around Hight, but he heads to Seattle with momentum.

“Fast Jack” Beckman has been tantalizingly close to earning his first Wally of 2019 and the 2015 NHRA Sonoma Nationals winner was hoping to put it all together this weekend. Beckman motored his DSR Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat to an opening-round victory over Jeff Diehl with a pass 3.996 seconds at 320.74 mph in his 700th career round of competition. The win earned Beckman a rematch with DSR teammate and fellow Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car racer Hagan, who he defeated last weekend in the first round of the Dodge Mile-High Nationals. Beckman took the advantage at the starting line, but Hagan powered by as the two drivers posted the two best runs of the session.

Four-time Sonoma Raceway winner Ron Capps looked to continue his run of success close to home and the northern California native started Sunday’s run for a fifth NHRA Sonoma Nationals victory from the ninth position on the ladder. In his first-round race with Blake Alexander, Capps quickly pulled ahead and held the lead through the 330-foot mark before losing traction allowing Alexander race past him and reach the finish line first putting a quick end to the day for Capps.

Jim Campbell was the sixth Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car driver in Sunday’s field, but was knocked out in the first round by Tasca.

In Top Fuel, Leah Pritchett and her HEMI-powered Okuma Top Fuel Dragster team looked primed for a long day of going rounds on Sunday after a pair of impressive runs during Saturday’s qualifying sessions. Pritchett made her best pass of the weekend (3.774 seconds) in the opening round versus Austin Prock, but came up short of advancing by half-a-car-length.

dodge MoparMotorsports on Instagram
For the second consecutive event, Hagan’s Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car carried the @dodgeMoparMotorsports logo on its hood during race weekend. The @dodgeMoparMotorsports Instagram channel will share content capturing Dodge//SRT Mopar drivers in action in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, NHRA Sportsman grassroots racers competing in classes such as Factory Stock Showdown, Stock and Super Stock, as well as additional motorsports series such as the concept version of the recently introduced Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody making a recent run in the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.

Mopar Dodge//SRT NHRA Sportsman Spotlight
Mike Kirby and John Irving earned Dodge Top Finisher honors in the Stock Eliminator and Super Stock classes, respectively, at the NHRA Sonoma Nationals.
Kirby earned his first NHRA victory in the Stock Eliminator classes racing his F/SA 1973 Duster 340 to six rounds wins. The Bakersfield, Calif. native has two prior runner-up finishes.

Boulder City, Nevada competitor Irving drove his SS/KA 1971 Duster 340 to five round wins and came up .004 seconds short of earning the Super Stock trophy.
The Dodge Top Finisher award, now in its third year, awards $500 to Stock Eliminator and Super Stock drivers who advance the furthest behind the wheel of a Mopar-powered Dodge, Chrysler or Plymouth race car at all 24 NHRA national events.

Dodge//SRT Mopar NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series: Notes & Quotes

Matt Hagan, Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car
(No. 6 Qualifier – 3.910 ET)

Rd.1: (.070-second reaction time, 3.958 seconds at 326.24 mph) beat No. 11 J.R. Todd (.060/4.016/322.04)
Rd.2: (.101/3.924/325.37) beat No. 3 Jack Beckman (.078/3.995/321.81)
Rd.3: (.093/3.962/322.42) beat No. 7 John Force (No Time)
Rd.4: (.061/4.030/316.90) lost to No. 1 Robert Hight (.052/3.973/325.45)

“This was a really good weekend for us. The Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody was really good. We put down some really impressive numbers on our way to the finals. It was important for us to win some rounds and improve ourselves in the standings with Indy coming up quickly. We gained a lot of confidence today and that’s huge at this point in the year. In the final, we just didn’t have the speed we needed to get that win, but we are right there. I think we have a really strong car right now. It’s driving well and responding to what we want it to do. Our goal now is just continue being consistent and hopefully we’ll pull down a win next weekend in Seattle.”

Tommy Johnson Jr., Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 5 Qualifier – 3.886 ET)

Rd.1: (.056-second reaction time, 4.084 seconds at 273.72 mph) beat No. 12 Cruz Pedregon (-.020/3.995/309.98)
Rd.2: (.075/4.031/318.47) beat No. 4 Bob Tasca III (.071/5.622/129.85)
Rd.3: (.079/4.056/311.49) lost to No. 1 Robert Hight (.080/4.099/166.72)

“I’m just extremely pleased with the way this Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat is performing. Today’s result wasn’t a win like last weekend, but that was a solid semifinal drag race with Robert Hight. We are one and two in the points and we put on a great show for the fans here today. It was a really close race and things are going to get interesting. We are getting closer to the Countdown and this car is performing flawlessly. We just need a little bit more. The next couple of races leading up to Indy, hopefully we can get just a tick better. I think we are setting ourselves up for a really strong finish to this season.”

Jack Beckman, Infinite Hero Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 3 Qualifier – 3.879 ET)

Rd.1: (.112-second reaction time, 3.996 seconds at 320.74 mph) beat No. 14 Jeff Diehl (.145/4.529/195.45)
Rd.2: (.078/3.995/321.81) lost to No. 6 Matt Hagan (.101/3.924/325.37)

“I think it’s probably a measure of respect for our team that we get low ET against us so often, but that just tells us we are going to have push harder relative to the racetrack. Dickie (Venables) and his team just opened a can of you know what on us in that run. I don’t know that any crew chief saw that coming. We have a great Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat right now. We made it down the racetrack six times in a row. This team is ready to celebrate on Sunday and we’re going to go win in Seattle.”

Leah Pritchett, Mopar Dodge 1320 Top Fuel Dragster
(No. 11 Qualifier – 3.800 ET)

Rd.1: (.074-second reaction time, 3.774 seconds at 324.44 mph) lost to No. 6 Austin Prock (.061/3.744/327.66)

“It was definitely the bad end of a great drag race today. It was a great show for the fans to watch, but man, we would’ve beat over three-quarters of our field. We had a fantastic race car. We made a great run, just got outran. Not sure what’s more difficult, getting a little bit of good luck on our side or toning down our clutch wear, but I believe we’ll find both in Seattle.”

Ron Capps, NAPA Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 9 Qualifier – 3.960 ET)

Rd.1: (.095-second reaction time, 4.466 seconds at 197.22 mph) lost to No. 8 Blake Alexander (.064/4.010/314.75)

“I felt confident going into race day, but you have to remember that Blake is young and hungry. He won this race in Top Fuel last year. We didn’t take them lightly. We were pushing to run a mid-to-high 3.90, and it just didn’t hold. It’s very rare to see the NAPA car smoke the tires at that point on race day. We’ll service and pack it up and head to Seattle and get back to it on Friday.”

Up Next: CatSpot NHRA Northwest Nationals
The Western Swing concludes next week with the 32nd Catspot NHRA Northwest Nationals, scheduled for August 2-4 at Pacific Raceways in Kent, Wash. Capps returns to the Seattle-area as the defending event winner and leads the Dodge//SRT Mopar drivers back into action chasing his third career triumph at the track.

2019 NHRA Championship — Point Standings After Round 15 of 24
(Season Wins in Parentheses)


NHRA Funny Car
1. Robert Hight (5) – 1283
2. Tommy Johnson, Jr., Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat (2) –1084
3. John Force – 1035
4. Jack Beckman, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat – 964
5. Ron Capps, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat (2) – 962

6. Bob Tasca III (1) – 924
7. J.R. Todd (1) – 889
8. Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat (2) – 888
9. Shawn Langdon (1) – 786
10. Tim Wilkerson – 757

NHRA Top Fuel
1. Steve Torrence (8) – 1486
2. Clay Millican – 914
2. Antron Brown – 914
4. Brittany Force (1) – 894
5. Doug Kalitta (1) - 887
6. Mike Salinas (2) – 802
7. Leah Pritchett, Mopar HEMI – 749
8. Richie Crampton (1) – 719
9. Austin Prock - 641
9. Terry McMillen – 641

Rick

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NHRA Northwest Nationals

Capps Keeps Dodge//SRT Mopar Finals Streak Going with Runner-up Result in NHRA Northwest Nationals

Dodge//SRT Mopar driver Ron Capps races to 121st career final and third in 2019 Sunday in NHRA Northwest Nationals at Pacific Raceways near Seattle
Matt Hagan qualifies third, advances to semifinal round driving 2020 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car
Tommy Johnson, Jr. holds No. 3 spot in Funny Car standings, leads three Mopar-powered Dodge//SRT drivers in top five
Leah Pritchett narrowly defeated in first round; holds seventh position in Top Fuel championship standings
Bill Bushmaker and Kelly Thomas pick up Dodge Top Finisher honors


August 4, 2019 , Auburn Hills, Mich. -

Defending NHRA Northwest Nationals winner Ron Capps came up just short in his bid to score back-to-back wins in Seattle racing his Mopar-powered Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car on Sunday at Pacific Raceways near Kent, Washington.

The two-time 2019 Funny Car winner made a charge through the field to give Dodge//SRT Mopar its fifth consecutive opportunity to capture an event victory. Capps wasn’t able to overtake John Force in the final after knocking out fellow DSR and Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car driver Matt Hagan in the semifinals. DSR teammate Jack Beckman also advanced to the semifinals.


Tommy Johnson, Jr., Capps and Beckman give Dodge//SRT Mopar three drivers inside the top-five in the championship standings through 16 of 24 events.

Capps began his repeat bid from the seventh position and posted an opening-round win aboard his NAPA Auto Parts Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat. The 2016 Funny Car world champion grabbed the starting-line advantage from J.R. Todd and raced away to setup his semifinal matchup with Hagan. Both drivers and teams were on their game, but it was Capps that moved on with his run of 3.974 seconds to advance to the final round. The historic final pitted the two winningest drivers in the category; in their 103rd career meeting Capps had a slight advantage on the tree, but it was Force that took the win. With his run to the final, Capps moved up to fourth in the championship standings.

After racing to the final last weekend in Sonoma, Hagan kept his momentum pointing in right direction qualifying his Sandvik Coromant Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody third in the field. The two-time Seattle winner dispatched Gary Densham and Shawn Langdon before his thrilling battle with Capps.

Beckman continued his push to becoming a championship contender. The 2007 NHRA Northwest Nationals champion qualified eighth for Sunday’s elimination rounds where he drove the DSR Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat to victory over fellow DSR and Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car driver Johnson, Jr., with a smooth pass of 3.937 seconds to start his run for a second Seattle triumph. Beckman then bounced Bob Tasca III to reach his fifth semifinal in the previous eight events where his opponent was Force. After the two had identical reaction times, Beckman slowed when his machine lost traction allowing Force to pull away for the victory.

After opening the Western Swing with a victory in the Dodge Mile-High NHRA Nationals, Johnson was looking to make it two wins in three races. The driver of the Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat made the best lap of the weekend to close qualifying but found himself running fellow DSR and Hellcat Funny Car driver Beckman. Johnson defeated Beckman en route to Denver triumph, but the outcome was different Sunday when his machine went into tire-smoke just after 200 feet. Johnson, who clinched his spot in the Countdown last weekend in Sonoma, ranks third with two races remaining before the points are reset for the six-race championship battle.

Cruz Pedregon raced his Snap-On Tools Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat into the field but was defeated in the first round by Langdon. Jim Campbell was the sixth Dodge//SRT Mopar driver in the field, but he lost a close race to Force in the first round.

For Top Fuel standout Leah Pritchett, it was a bit of déjà vu as she qualified her HEMI-powered [DR1] Sparkling Ice Top Fuel Dragster fifth in the field. In a rematch of last week’s first round race with Austin Prock, Pritchett lost ground at the starting line, but was closing on Prock before losing by 0.0192 seconds (approximately 9 feet).

Mopar Dodge//SRT NHRA Sportsman Spotlight
Bill Bushmaker and Kelly Thomas captured Dodge Top Finisher honors at the NHRA Northwest Nationals in the Stock Eliminator and Super Stock classes, respectively.
Bushmaker, driver of a I/SA 1976 Plymouth Road Runner, qualified eighth in the field of 37 entries and the Auburn, Washington native took an opening-round victory before red-lighting in round two to close his day.

In Super Stock, Thomas raced his GT/LA 1969 Dodge Dart into round powered by Mopar 340 small block V8 that was consistently producing 10-second elapsed times all through the event.

The Dodge Top Finisher award, now in its third year, awards $500 to Stock Eliminator and Super Stock drivers who advance the furthest behind the wheel of a Mopar-powered Dodge, Chrysler or Plymouth race car at all 24 NHRA national events.

Dodge//SRT Mopar NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series: Notes & Quotes

Ron Capps, NAPA Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 7 Qualifier – 3.898 ET)

Rd.1: (.093-second reaction time, 3.939 seconds at 327.35 mph) beat No. 10 Tim Wilkerson (.081/4.205/253.95)
Rd.2: (.066/3.992/322.58) beat No. 2 J.R. Todd (.070/5.277/153.40)
Rd. 3: (.072/3.974/323.58) beat No. 3 Matt Hagan (.080/3.982/327.27)
Rd. 4: (.082/4.018/309.91) lost to No. 4 John Force (.084/3.971/320.58)

“I’m very happy with the way the swing ended. You know (Rahn) Tobler … we did a little bit of testing Saturday and that really showed a lot of progress. And we beat some great racecars to reach the final round. Honestly, we thought we had the run to win, but for some reason our car did not run in the middle of the track like it had all day. It was down a little bit of mile an hour. I didn’t hear or see John Force until about halftrack and he popped out about a car length on us. Great weekend. Good points weekend. I think we are in a good position moving forward.”

Matt Hagan, Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car
(No. 6 Qualifier – 3.888 ET)

Rd.1: (.081-second reaction time, 3.988 seconds at 328.22 mph) beat No. Gary Densham (.121/4.058/322.04)
Rd.2: (.057/3.970/325.53) beat No. 6 Shawn Langdon (.082/5.067/148.69)
Rd.3: (.080/3.982/327.27) lost to No. 7 Ron Capps (.072/3.974/323.58)

“I think our western swing has been pretty good considering we went to the finals in Sonoma and semifinals here in Seattle. Our Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody is running really, really good. I’m really happy with the performance. It’s been consistent and is reacting to everything (crew chief) Dickie (Venables) is telling it to do. When you get beat on the backside of a good drag race like what happened to us against Capps, that’s a whole lot easier to swallow than when you’re out here smoking the tires or not going down the race track. As these races progress, and as we move toward the Countdown, I feel really good about what we’re doing with this race team and race car.”

Jack Beckman, Infinite Hero Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 8 Qualifier – 3.917 ET)

Rd.1: (.089-second reaction time, 3.937 seconds at 327.59 mph) beat No. 9 Tommy Johnson, Jr. (.145/4.529/195.45)
Rd.2: (.086/3.973/323.04) beat No. 1 Bob Tasca III (.086/4.017/321.50)
Rd.3: (.071/4.480/197.65) lost to No. 4 John Force (.071/4.014/320.97)

“A frustrating end again. We have a top-five car. We ran into another top-five and it just becomes a battle of tuners and drives up there. Neither one of us ran particularly great, but our car just smoked the tires. And we know we have a car that is capable of winning a championship. We need to prove that we have a car that can win a race right now. The silver lining is that we leave here top-five in points. We gained some ground on the guys in front of us. The crew chiefs have a week off to go over some things and get us organized to go into Brainerd with the right frame of mind.”

Tommy Johnson Jr., Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 9 Qualifier – 3.886 ET)

Rd.1: (.083-second reaction time, 5.182 seconds at 141.86 mph) lost to No. 8 Jack Beckman (.089/3.937/327.59)

“Our qualifying position bit us more than anything. It hurt not having lane choice in the first round. The track became a one-lane-track pretty fast during that first round and not having lane choice was definitely a disadvantage. We’ll go home and put a new front-half on this car and go into Brainerd with a fresh car, and get our consistency back. I’d grade the swing a B for us, overall, with a win and a semifinal finish. You never like a first-round loss, and if we could have gone some rounds today, it would have been an A.”

Leah Pritchett, Sparkling Ice Top Fuel Dragster
(No. 5 Qualifier – 3.725 ET)

Rd.1: (.086-second reaction time, 3.762 seconds at 325.30 mph) lost to No. 12 Austin Prock (.068/3.761/321.95)

“We have a great hot rod, and we really wanted redemption against (Austin) Prock after Sonoma. Unfortunately, we were on the short end of it once again. The Swing has definitely taken its toll, but we’re coming out of it stronger than we were going into it which gives us momentum heading into Brainerd. My favorite thing about this team is they don’t hang their heads low. My guys that are led by (crew chiefs) Todd (Okuhara) and Neal (Strausbaugh) have got this hot rod figured out. It’s been a great western swing and I can’t thank the fans enough as we close out this swing and head onto Brainerd.”

Up Next: Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals
Following a week off, the Dodge//SRT Mopar drivers will resume the 2019 campaign with the 32nd annual Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals at Brainerd International Raceway in Brainerd, Minnesota, August 15-18.

2019 NHRA Championship — Point Standings After Round 16 of 24
(Season Wins in Parentheses)

NHRA Funny Car
1. Robert Hight (5) – 1341
2. John Force (1) – 1155
3. Tommy Johnson, Jr., Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat (2) –1117
4. Ron Capps, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat (2) – 1057
5. Jack Beckman, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat – 1039

6. Bob Tasca III (1) – 985
7. Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat (2) – 965
8. J.R. Todd (1) – 949
9. Shawn Langdon (1) – 840
10. Tim Wilkerson – 792


NHRA Top Fuel

1. Steve Torrence (8) – 1587
2. Antron Brown – 966
3. Clay Millican – 955
4. Brittany Force (1) – 953
5. Doug Kalitta (1) - 940
6. Mike Salinas (2) – 883
7. Leah Pritchett, Mopar HEMI – 786
8. Richie Crampton (1) – 753
8. Austin Prock (1) - 753
10. Terry McMillen – 676

Rick

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NHRA Nationals at Brainerd International Raceway in Brainerd, Minnesota.

Pritchett and Capps Double Up for Dodge//SRT Mopar With NHRA Top Fuel and Funny Car Triumphs at Brainerd

Leah Pritchett wins first Wally of 2019 racing the Don Schumacher Racing HEMI®-powered Dodge//SRT Mopar Top Fuel Dragster to victory in Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals at Brainerd International Raceway in Brainerd, Minnesota
Dodge//SRT Mopar driver Ron Capps wins third race of 2019 and sixth career triumph at Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals
Tommy Johnson, Jr. reaches 50th career Funny Car final, fifth at Brainerd and fourth of 2019; moves up to No. 2 spot in Funny Car standings
Matt Hagan earns 35th career No. 1 qualifier, advances to semifinal round driving 2020 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car
Dodge//SRT Mopar and Don Schumacher Racing drivers hold four of top six positions in NHRA Funny Car standings
Kevin Leinhart and Dan Zrust pick up Dodge Top Finisher honors

August 18, 2019 , Auburn Hills, Mich. -

Leah Pritchett and Ron Capps earned Dodge//SRT Mopar an NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series double up with Top Fuel and Funny Car wins, respectively, in the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals at Brainerd International Raceway in Brainerd, Minnesota.

For Pritchett, the win Sunday was her first piloting the Mopar-powered Dodge//SRT Top Fuel dragster in 2019 and first since winning the 2018 Dodge Mile-High Nationals, a span of 26 races. She scored her eighth career win by beating Kyle Wurtzel, Billy Torrence, Austin Prock and Mike Salinas.

Capps defeated fellow Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) and Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car racer Tommy Johnson, Jr. racing the NAPA Auto Parts Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat to score his third Wally of the season, 64th of this career and a record sixth in Brainerd.


With the only the U.S. Nationals remaining before the points are reset for the six-race NHRA Countdown to the Championship, Dodge//SRT Mopar and DSR drivers hold the second through sixth positions in the Funny Car class – Johnson, Jr. (2nd), Capps (4th), Jack Beckman (5th) and Matt Hagan (6th).

It’s been a challenging season for Pritchett, but on Sunday her DSR team was the last standing after starting the day from the fourth position on the eliminations ladder. After being knocked out in the first round the previous two races, the first hurdle was cleared when Pritchett defeated Wurtzel by posting a lap of 3.744 seconds at 327.43 mph. She followed that win up by defeating the last two winners in consecutive rounds, first defeating Billy Torrence in the second round and then avenging consecutive loses to Austin Prock in the semifinals. By defeating Prock, she reached the final for the 15th time in her career and clinched her spot in the upcoming Countdown to the Championship. In the final, Pritchett left first and smoothly drove away to score her 130th career round win and second race win at Brainerd.

After finishing runner-up two weeks ago in Seattle, Capps was focused on continuing his successful summer run with a great performance in Brainerd. The path to victory was loaded with Countdown contenders and former world champions. He started with reigning Funny Car champion J.R. Todd in round one where he outran Todd by putting up a lap of 3.920 seconds to start the day. Next it was his teammate and No. 2 qualifier Beckman and the two put on a show with Capps besting his first round run with a lap of 3.918 to eliminate Beckman and reach his sixth semifinal of 2019. Capps was solid again in the semifinals while opponent Shawn Langdon smoked his tires to set up the all DSR final. The starting line was the difference and Capps surged to his 50th career win driving for Don Schumacher.

Johnson continued proving he is going to be a factor in the 2019 Funny Car championship chase Sunday with his runner-up finish. He raced the DSR Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car from the fifth position on the ladder and was victorious over Tim Wilkerson in the first round, Johnson followed that by defeating Robert Hight in the quarterfinals with his best run of the day at 3.910 seconds. In the semifinal, he squared off with No. 1 qualifier Matt Hagan and used a tremendous light, .031 reaction time, and lap of 3.930 ET to keep his run for a second Brainerd triumph alive as he reached his 50th career Funny Car final and seventh in Brainerd. In the final, Capps had the starting line advantage and Johnson couldn’t recover despite making it close with a run of 3.947 compared to the winner’s pass of 3.946. Johnson has now finished in the runner-up spot four out of the last five years at Brainerd.

Two-time Funny Car world champion Hagan earned his 35th career No. 1 qualifier aboard the DSR 2020 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car and clinched his spot in the six-race Countdown to the Championship Saturday. He opened his quest for his first-ever victory in Brainerd Sunday by defeating Dale Creasy, Jr. with a run of 3.937 seconds to advance to the second round where he overpowered Bob Tasca III with another sub 4-second run of 3.954 ET and advanced to his seventh semifinal appearance of 2019. It was an all-DSR/all-Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat semifinal matchup pitting Hagan versus Johnson, Jr. The duo staged a terrific drag race and Johnson’s 3.930 was just enough to end Hagan’s run. Hagan was able to climb to sixth in the season championship standings.

After qualifying the DSR Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car second in the field for the third time in 2019, Beckman rocketed to an opening-round win over Terry Haddock by posting the quickest run and top speed of the weekend at 3.876 seconds at 329.75 mph to advance to the quarterfinals.

In the quarterfinals, he matched up with fellow DSR and Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car racer Ron Capps for the first time head-to-head this season. Capps grabbed the starting-line advantage and Beckman couldn’t catch the four-time Brainerd champion despite posting a pass of 3.945 seconds. Sunday’s exit was the fourth in the previous five races where Beckman has been defeated by a DSR teammate.

Cruz Pedregon and Paul Lee also qualified for Sunday’s 16-car field driving Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Cars. Pedregon qualified his Snap-on Tools Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat 13th and was defeated by Hight, while Lee lost his first-round matchup with Langdon.

Mopar Dodge//SRT NHRA Sportsman Spotlight
Kevin Leinhart and Dan Zrust were winners of the Dodge Top Finisher honors in Stock Eliminator and Super Stock, respectively, Sunday at Brainerd International Raceway during the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals.

Leinart powered his way to a semifinal finish behind the wheel of his R/SA 1969 Dodge Dart. The Dakota City, Nebraska racer powered his Mopar 318 cubic-inch small block V8 through five rounds of Stock Eliminator competition before coming up just 0.18 seconds short of racing to the final.

Zrust, from Maple Grove, Minnesota, piloted his GT/AA 1968 Plymouth Barracuda to the semifinals before being eliminated because he left the starting line early and was disqualified.

The Dodge Top Finisher award, now in its third year, awards $500 to Stock Eliminator and Super Stock drivers who advance the furthest behind the wheel of a Mopar-powered Dodge, Chrysler, or Plymouth race car at all 24 NHRA national events.

Dodge//SRT Mopar NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series: Notes & Quotes

Leah Pritchett, Mopar Dodge//SRT Top Fuel Dragster
(No. 4 Qualifier – 3.756)

Rd. 1: (.091-second reaction time, 3.744 seconds at 327.43 mph) beat No. 13 Kyle Wurtzel (.112/6.758/85.34)
Rd. 2: (.065/3.764/326.79) beat No. 5 Billy Torrence (-.160/4.124/205.13)
Rd. 3: (.047/3.725/327.27) beat No. 8 Austin Prock (.045/4.002/299.33)
Rd. 4: (.058/3.732/321.04) beat No. 3 Mike Salinas (.074/4.066/235.72)

“It feels so good to finally get that win, not only for myself and my team, but for Don Schumacher and Dodge. Proud to be the one to put on that final round Top Fuel win light. This is the perfect time to be able to gain momentum heading into the playoffs. We made four incredible runs (today) and that’s something that (co-crew chiefs) Todd Okuhara and Neal Strausbaugh have worked hard to do consistently, and now it’s coming into play at a perfect time. Putting all of the pieces of the puzzle together, we could see, internally, that we were moving in the right direction, but now everyone could finally see it this weekend. We’re happy we can bring the Wally home for Dodge and Mopar, and are looking forward to more this year.”

Ron Capps, NAPA Auto Parts Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 7 Qualifier – 3.908)

Rd. 1: (.092-second reaction time, 3.920 seconds at 327.03 mph) beat No. 10 J.R. Todd (.066/4.635/174.55)
Rd. 2: (.077/3.918/325.53) beat No. 2 Jack Beckman (.089/3.945/327.82)
Rd. 3: (.064/3.938/322/27) beat No. 6 Shawn Langdon (.076/4.377/201.43)
Rd. 4: (.055/3.946/324.28) beat No. 5 Tommy Johnson, Jr. (.171/3.947/319.98)

“This is the time of year where you have to be at your best. Teamwork and great leadership from the top down are the reasons why we are here today. Every time I race Tommy Johnson’s car, I feel like I’m racing a mirror of myself. (Johnson’s crew chief) John Collins is a chip off the old block, he spent so many years working under Rahn Tobler; his approach is the same, and their car is set up almost identical to ours. The list of teams we beat today are teams you’re going to have to beat to win a world championship. I’m so happy we had so much success today, and we have a great running car. I feel really good leaving here.”

Tommy Johnson, Jr., Make-A-Wish Foundation Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 5 Qualifier – 3.908)

Rd. 1: (.075-second reaction time, 3.944 seconds at 320.20 mph) beat No. 12 Tim Wilkerson (.070/4.519/191.87)
Rd. 2: (.068/3.910/323.50) beat No. 4 Robert Hight (.095/6.034/115.21)
Rd. 3: (.031/3.930/324.59) beat No. 1 Matt Hagan (.062/3.932/326.08)
Rd. 4: (.171/3.947/319.98) lost to No. 7 Ron Capps (.055/3.946/324.28)

“We had a big points day for the team and have a really good running Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car. I just made a rookie mistake there in the final. A mistake that I shouldn’t have made, but all in all it was a good day. To be able to win the rounds we did and get to another final just builds confidence for this team. We have a lot of momentum going into to Indy and I’m ready.”

Matt Hagan, Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car
(No. 1 Qualifier – 3.890)

Rd. 1: (.053-second reaction time, 3.937 seconds at 329.18 mph) beat No. 16 Dale Creasy, Jr. (.061/4.119/295.66)
Rd. 2: (.060/3.954/323.81) beat No. 8 Bob Tasca III (.045/4.092/267.16)
Rd. 3: (.062/3.932/326.08) lost to No. 5 Tommy Johnson, Jr. (.031/3.930/324.59)

“It was a good weekend at Brainerd getting the pole and moving around (Bob) Tasca in the points, and obviously Indy is points-and-a-half. We’re making momentum with this Mopar-powered Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Funny Car, and (crew chief) Dickie (Venables) has a really good handle on the tune-up of this Hemi in a lot of conditions. We won Epping and have been going rounds, and this team is peaking at the right time, and I like the way we’re progressing. It’s going to be a dog fight in the Countdown.”

Jack Beckman, Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 2 Qualifier – 3.908)

Rd. 1: (.095-second reaction time, 3.876 seconds at 329.75 mph) beat No. 15 Terry Haddock (.116/5.076/151.27)
Rd. 2: (.089/3.945/327.82) lost to No. 7 Ron Capps (.077/3.918/325.53)

“Our last win came here and we were kind of hoping this is where we were going to get over the hump this year because we do need a win. I’ll take six runner-ups in the Countdown if that’s enough to win the championship, but we need to get a trophy. To go out there first round and run low ET and top speed of the weekend and then come back and just flat get outrun by the NAPA team in second round … that’s kind of a testament to DSR teams and how hard we race one another. Most of the time our toughest competition comes from within our own camp. That doesn’t make me feel better, because we came here to take the Infinite Hero Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat to four win lights. We’ll take the data and get ourselves prepared for Indy. That’s a marathon race and there’s nothing more that this team wants more than to go the distance at Indy.”

Up Next: U.S. Nationals
The Mopar Dodge//SRT Mopar contingent of racers and teams return to action in two weeks during the NHRA U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis in Indiana. The event consists of six days of action beginning Thursday, August 29 and culminating Monday, September 2, with eliminations on Labor Day. The 19th annual NHRA Dodge HEMI® Challenge takes center stage Thursday and Friday, August 29-30, to open the U.S. Nationals.

2019 NHRA Championship – Point Standings Through 17 of 24 Rounds
(Season Wins in Parentheses)

NHRA Funny Car
1.Robert Hight (5) - 1397
2. Tommy Johnson, Jr. Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat (2) – 1218
3. John Force (1) - 1199
4. Ron Capps, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat (3) –1171
5. Jack Beckman, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat - 1098
6. Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody (2) - 1047

7. 6. Bob Tasca III (2) - 1038
8. J.R. Todd (1) -981
9. Shawn Langdon (1) - 914
10. Tim Wilkerson - 824

NHRA Top Fuel

1. Steve Torrence (8) - 1650
2. Brittany Force (1) - 1015
3. Doug Kalitta (1) - 1013
4. Clay Millican - 1009
5. Antron Brown - 998
6. Mike Salinas (2) – 986
7. Leah Pritchett, Mopar HEMI (1) - 903
8. Austin Prock (1) - 826
9. Richie Crampton (1) - 785
10. Terry McMillen - 708

Rick

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