Kalitta makes plans for second straight Pomona win
Pomona Highlights: Two wins (Fall 2016, Spring 2009); Six finals (Spring 2016, Spring 2014, Fall 2013, Spring 2010, Spring 2004, Fall 1999); Six no.1 qualifiers (Spring 2014, Fall 2006, Fall 2004, Spring 2004, Spring 2003, Spring 2001)
2016 Winternationals Event Recap: Qualified second; Finalist (Defeated Scott Palmer in the first round, Antron Brown in the quarter-finals, J.R. Todd in the semi-finals, lost to Steve Torrence in the finals.)
2016 Auto Club Finals Event Recap: Qualified second; Race Winner (Defeated Shawn Reed in the first round, Tony Schumacher in the quarter-finals, Shawn Langdon in the semi-finals and J.R. Todd in the final)
Quotable: “We had a great test with this Mac Tools Toyota Top Fuel machine and Pomona was great to us last season! The Mac Tools team is really focused on making each race count and we cannot wait to get back to racing this weekend at historic Auto Club Raceway, especially after winning here last fall.”
Career Stats: 434 starts, 589 round wins (10th all-time), 42 wins (Fifth all-time in Top Fuel), 87 finals, 47 no.1 qualifiers (13th all-time)
2016 Season Stats: Four wins (Houston, Atlanta, Topeka, Pomona-II); Four no.1 qualifiers (Phoenix, Atlanta, Norwalk, Charlotte-II); Two finals (Pomona-I, Charlotte-II); 44 round wins; second in the final standings
Noteworthy: could become the ninth driver to hit 600 round wins this season; also will reach 1,000 career rounds competed early this year; uncle Connie Kalitta scored first NHRA win at the Winternationals in 1967
Rookie Coughlin Jr. desires solid debut
Noteworthy: First career pro event; a leading candidate for Auto Club Road to Future trophy (best rookie driver); father is former Pro Mod champion (Troy Coughlin Sr.); uncle is former Pro Stock champion (Jeg Coughlin Jr.)
Quotable: “The test session was very valuable to me and the SealMaster Toyota guys as they worked so hard having this car ready 13 times in four days. It is such a learning curve from the seat that it is humbling in many ways. I cannot thank Connie (Kalitta), Rob (Flynn) and my SealMaster team enough for having patience with me. The car is so much faster and different than anything I have ever driven. We are as ready as we can be for Pomona. I am taking it one lap at a time as the learning never stops in the sport of drag racing.”
Career Info: Five national event wins (Three in Super Gas, Two in Super Comp); 2013 Division III Super Gas Champion; 2015 NHRA Pro Mod Rookie of the Year
Todd, former Winternationals champ, looks forward to new challenge
Pomona Highlights: One win (Spring 2007-TF); One final (Fall 2016-TF); One No.1 qualifiers (Fall 2016-TF); Auto Club Raceway Track Elapsed Time Record Holder (Top Fuel)
2016 Winternationals Event Recap: Qualified 11th; Semi-finalist (Defeated Brittany Force in the first round and Terry McMillen in the quarter-finals, lost to Doug Kalitta in the semi-finals)
2016 Auto Club Finals Event Recap: Qualified first; Finalist (Defeated Troy Buff in the first round, Richie Crampton in the quarter-finals and Antron Brown in the semi-finals, lost to Doug Kalitta in the finals)
Quotable: “It was good to be able to get some full runs under my belt in this DHL Toyota. Each time it seemed like I was getting more and more comfortable but that just comes with time. Now it is time to go to Pomona and have some fun.”
Career Stats: 148 starts, 149 round wins, 9 wins, 19 finals, 9 no.1 qualifiers
2016 Season Stats: One win (Sonoma); Three finals (Atlanta, Norwalk, Chicago); One no.1 qualifier (Pomona-II); 37 round wins; fourth in the finals standings
Noteworthy: Debut Funny Car event; Track record Top Fuel run was the fifth quickest in NHRA history (3.680); next round win will give Todd 150 round wins for career; attempting to become the 16th driver in NHRA history with a Top Fuel and Funny Car win; Todd Smith joins Jon Oberhofer as co-crew chiefs on the DHL Toyota Camry; DHL celebrating 10th year of NHRA sponsorship
(Doug Kalitta, Troy Coughlin Jr., J.R. Todd)
All photos are courtesy of Gary Nastase Photography.
DeJoria Pomona pre-race notes
2016 Winternationals Event Recap: Qualified fourth; Quarter-final finish (Defeated James Campbell in the first round, lost to Del Worsham in the quarter-finals)
Career Stats: 116 starts, 82 round wins, 4 wins, 7 finals, 4 no.1 qualifiers
2016 Season Stats: One win (Las Vegas-I); One semi-final (Bristol); One No. 1 qualifier (Charlotte-I); 13 round wins; 10th in the final standings
Noteworthy: Tommy DeLago is joined by Nicky Boninfante as co-crew chiefs on the Tequila Patrón Toyota Camry Funny Car
For further requests on Alexis DeJoria, please contact:
Photo is courtesy of Gary Nastase.
GASTONIA, N.C. (Jan. 25, 2017) – WIX® Filters, a global manufacturer of filtration products, has joined Kalitta Motorsports as a chief technical partner through a multi-platform sponsorship agreement and has been named the Official Filters of Team Kalitta, which competes in the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA).
J.R. Todd will be WIX Filters' lead NHRA driver, with his DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car featuring associate branding from WIX. Todd will debut the car at the February 10th Circle K Winternationals at the Auto Club Raceway in Pomona.
“Our partnership with Kalitta Motorsports is a continuation of a great history with cars competing in NHRA, and reflects the shared value of high-performing engines,” said Jennifer Gibson, brand manager for WIX. “We’re looking forward to a successful season with the entire Kalitta team.”
Race teams have relied on the quality and performance of WIX Filters for 60 years, and in return the track provides exceptional R&D testing grounds for WIX engineers. With Team Kalitta, WIX will see its filters perform in the Top Fuel and Funny Car competition, where cars reach top performance speeds of more than 330 mph in less than 3.7 seconds. In addition to Todd’s car, the WIX Filters logo also will be seen on Team Kalitta entries driven by Troy Coughlin Jr., Alexis DeJoria, Doug Kalitta and Paul Lee.
“It’s exciting to announce a partnership with an iconic brand like WIX Filters as we start this new NHRA season,” said Todd. “WIX Filters is the best in the filter world, and we plan on following that lead by celebrating many wins with their customers this year.”
Jim Oberhofer, vice president of operations for Kalitta, said this new partnership with WIX Filters has been a part of what has been an exciting offseason for Kalitta Motorsports.
“I know J.R. is going to do a great job representing WIX and all of their customers,” said Oberhofer. “WIX and Team Kalitta mesh extremely well, and we plan on making this a long and lasting relationship.”
For more information on WIX, please visit wixfilters.com.
YPSILANTI, Mich. (January 24, 2017) – With the 2017 NHRA season nearing its starting date, Kalitta Motorsports is excited to welcome Global Electronic Technology to their sponsorship family. Global Electronic Technology will be a major associate sponsor on the Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster driven by Doug Kalitta and also will have branding on the remainder of the full-time Kalitta Motorsports entries driven by Troy Coughlin Jr., Alexis DeJoria and J.R. Todd.
“I am really excited about this deal with Global Electronic Technology,” said Jim Oberhofer, Vice President of Operations, Kalitta Motorsports. “Steve and Samantha Bryson (owners of Global Electronic Technology) are great people and we have found such synergy in what we do. We know this relationship will be beneficial to both parties.”
“The Brysons have become fast friends and I am thrilled to be able to make them official members of the Team Kalitta family.”
Based in Torrance, CA, Global Electronic Technology has over a quarter century of expertise in the payment processing industry. The Global Electronic Technology team is committed to setting the standard by delivering the most advanced technological packages in the payment processing industry, which makes our team one of the most knowledgeable in the world. Global Electronic Technology is also committed to pioneering new business opportunities for owners by delivering daily data that can improve a company’s competitive position in the marketplace. Their vision and technical prowess is reflected in Global Electronic Technology’s vigilant focus on innovative solutions for the transaction processing of today and tomorrow.
“Both Samantha and I are ecstatic to join the Kalitta family as their newest sponsor. It’s like living a lifelong dream to be a football player and ending up on the Super Bowl team the very first year,” said Global Electronic Technology CEO and Founder Steve Bryson. “Both organizations are competitive and family oriented. That is what makes this a fast and competitive alignment.”
The Global Electronic Technology logos will make their Team Kalitta debut as NHRA kicks off the 2017 season at the Circle K Winternationals at Auto Club Raceway of Pomona on February 10-12.
YPSILANTI, Mich. (November 23, 2016) – Kalitta Motorsports is pleased to announce that current Top Fuel driver J.R. Todd is moving to the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car seat vacated by Del Worsham. In turn, Troy Coughlin Jr. will move from the planned part-time sixth team to a full-time seat aboard the SealMaster Top Fuel dragster.
Todd is making his return to the Funny Car class, but for the first time as a driver. He worked on Bob Gilberston’s Funny Car during the 2003-2005 NHRA seasons with current Kalitta employees Nicky Boninfante and Tommy DeLago.
“Connie told Jim O the DHL Toyota is a special car and that I was the right guy for the job, which was a huge compliment to me,” said Todd, who will make his Funny Car debut at the Circle K Winternationals in February. “I am going to miss Del as a teammate as he has always been one of my heroes. I want to also say a huge thanks to SealMaster and their awesome franchisees. They are great people and it was an honor to represent them.”
Todd turns to the Funny Car class after a career season aboard the SealMaster Toyota Top Fuel dragster. In 152 Top Fuel events, Todd has earned nine victories, 19 final round appearances, nine No.1 qualifiers and 149 round wins. He was the 2006 AAA Road to the Future rookie winner and has placed in the top five in the point standings two times, including a fourth-place effort this year.
“Ever since I worked with Nicky and Tommy D on a Funny Car, driving one has been in the back of my mind and most people have known that. The DHL Toyota has quite the legacy and it is a huge honor to be picked to drive it.”
DHL will continue as the primary sponsor on Todd's Toyota Camry Funny Car for the entire season.
Coughlin, Jr. will have an elite team to drive for during his rookie season. In 2016, Todd took the SealMaster machine to a race win in Sonoma, 37 round wins and a top five finish in the point standings.
“I am thrilled to be competing full-time for Kalitta Motorsports in 2017 with an incredible backer like SealMaster and their franchise owners,” said Coughlin, Jr. “The car is one of the best looking machines on the race track and it is awesome to be able to know I will have a car that can compete for the title.”
Coughlin, Jr. won the 2013 Super Gas title in division 3 and is a two-time NHRA U.S. Nationals winner. In, 2015, he drove in the NHRA J&A Service Pro Mod series and was named Rookie of the Year. In his career, the 26-year-old driver has driven Junior Dragsters, Super Comp, Super Gas, Top Dragster and Pro Mod machines. Earlier this year, he earned his Top Fuel license.
NHRA Lifetime Achievement award winner and drag racing legend Connie Kalitta will continue alongside Rob Flynn in their roles after their outstanding 2016 season. SealMaster remains as the primary sponsor on the machine for all 24 events.
“I am excited for the future of our team,” said Jim Oberhofer, Vice President of Operations, Kalitta Motorsports. “First, I want to thank our incredible partners, DHL and SealMaster, for helping make this transition seamless. Both J.R. and Troy are ready for the 2017 season. J.R. is a very motivated driver and continues to be a perfect fit at Kalitta Motorsports. I know he will be a great ambassador for DHL and Toyota and I look forward to see what the season holds. I am also thrilled to be able to get Troy into a full time seat. He proved to be a very precise driver during our test session in Las Vegas and I know he is going to do a great job in the SealMaster Top Fuel dragster.”
Finally, the Kalitta Motorsports Funny Cars will also see a reorganization of the team’s crew chiefs. Todd’s DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car will be led by Jon Oberhofer and Todd Smith as co-crew chiefs. Smith comes from teammate Paul Lee’s Funny Car. Former DHL co-crew chief Nicky Boninfante will join Tommy DeLago on the Tequila Patrón Toyota Camry Funny Car driven by Alexis DeJoria and Glen Huszar will lead Lee’s McLeod Racing Funny Car. All five Funny Car crew chiefs are former NHRA champions.
Both Coughlin, Jr. and Todd will have solid teammates backing them up. Coughlin, Jr. will partner with 2016 championship runner-up Doug Kalitta in the Top Fuel ranks, while Todd will be joined by Alexis DeJoria and Paul Lee in the Funny Car ranks. Coughlin, Jr., DeJoria, Kalitta and Todd will all compete full-time with Lee planning a part-time run.
Konnekt with Kalitta Motorsports: For more info about Kalitta Motorsports including exclusive content such as videos, photos and more, please visit #KalittaStrong online - Website: www.teamkalitta.com Facebook: www.facebook.com/KalittaMotorsports Twitter: www.twitter.com/TeamKalitta YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/TeamKalitta Instagram: www.instagram.com/TeamKalitta
YPSILANTI, Mich. (November 22, 2016) – Kalitta Motorsports announces today the departure of 2015 NHRA Funny Car Champion Del Worsham. Worsham will remain a valuable part of the NHRA community as he rejoins his family-owned Funny Car team.
“It was a hard decision to leave a championship-caliber team such as Kalitta Motorsports,” said Worsham. “However, there is so much unfinished business with my family’s team and I felt now is the time to do it. I am excited to see what the future holds. I cannot thank Connie Kalitta enough for giving me a shot in Scott’s car, and helping me achieve one of my ultimate goals: a Funny Car championship. I also want to thank Jim O (Oberhofer), Jon O (Oberhofer), Nicky Boninfante, the ‘YellaFellas’ and my Kalitta Motorsports teammates.”
“I walked away from one of the best rides in 2011 after I won the Top Fuel championship, and I feel the same way now. The time is just right and I know this is the right decision for me and my family.”
After claiming his 2011 Top Fuel Championship with Al-Anabi Racing, Worsham joined Team Kalitta as crew chief for Alexis DeJoria’s rookie NHRA Funny Car season. In 2013, Worsham moved back to the driver’s seat as driver of the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car. Last season, Worsham delivered Connie Kalitta his first Funny Car championship as an owner. From 2013 through 2016, Worsham claimed six victories, 10 additional final round appearances, eight No.1 qualifiers and 120 round wins.
“Del has been a big part of the Kalitta Motorsports family for many years and we are sad to see him go,” said Jim Oberhofer, Vice President of Operations, Kalitta Motorsports. “He gave Connie his first Funny Car championship and has been a valuable asset for DHL, Toyota and our entire group of supporters. We wish him the best of success in his next endeavors.”
The new driver for the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car has already been selected and will be announced at a later date.
Top Fuel (Unofficial)
1. Leah Pritchett (494)
2. Antron Brown (440)
3. Tony Schumacher (438)
4. Doug Kalitta (358)
5. Steve Torrence (352)
6. Brittany Force (292)
7. Clay Millican (269)
8. Troy Coughlin Jr. (228)
9. Terry McMillen (195)
10. Scott Palmer (180)
17. Shawn Langdon (32)
Funny Car (Unofficial)
1. Matt Hagan (400)
2. Ron Capps (398)
3. John Force (371)
4. Tommy Johnson Jr. (357)
5. Robert Hight (301)
5. Courtney Force (301)
7. Jack Beckman (282)
8. Jonnie Lindberg (235)
9. J.R. Todd (222)
10. Jim Campbell (211)
11. Alexis DeJoria (208)