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Kalitta Motorsports News

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. (September 10, 2013)— It’s down to the homestretch of the 24-race 2013 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing series. With just six races left, Alexis DeJoria and the Kalitta Motorsports Tequila Patrón Toyota Camry Funny Car team are looking to close out the season strong. Coming off of their season best run in Indianapolis earlier this month (4.036-seconds at 312.35-mph), the Patrón team looks to carry that momentum in to Charlotte, N.C. as they get ready to compete in the 6th annual NHRA Carolina Nationals at zMAX Dragway this weekend.

In her short two year career as a nitro Funny Car pilot, DeJoria, who spent six years in the NHRA’s sportsman classes learning the ropes before hopping into the seat of a nitro-fueled machine, has amassed a visit to the finals, four semi-final appearances, and qualifying bonus points to her list of accomplishments. The Patrón team, which has experienced their fair share of ups and downs, is looking to add a win to that growing list, and they feel that this weekend could be their time.

“Without the pressure of trying to get into the Countdown, we’re able to focus all of our efforts on picking up that first win,” said DeJoria. “Winning of course has always been the goal, but now that the cutoff for the Countdown has come and gone, it’s now our only goal. Our eyes are on the prize. Tommy [DeLago, crew chief and 2011 Funny Car world champion tuner] has had good luck at the Charlotte track in the past. Judging from our Indy runs- not just the race, but also the test session that week prior- I think we’ve made some really good headway. We’ve learned a lot and Indy proved that we have a great car and a combination that can win races. Our last two runs at Indy [Q4 and E1] were among the quickest of the whole Funny Car class, which is promising.”

YPSILANTI, Mich., (Sept. 4, 2013) – There are now only six events remaining on the 2013 Mello Yello Drag Racing Series calendar. At the previous event last weekend, the 59th annual running of the world-renowned U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis, the Team Kalitta contingent of Doug Kalitta, Del Worsham, David Grubnic and Alexis DeJoria had mixed results, but all four drivers and teams performed very well and all returned to Kalitta Motorsports headquarters in Ypsilanti, Mich. with heads held high and an even stronger desire to finish this season’s campaign with multiple wins and a points championship or two.

Doug Kalitta, driver of the “Big Red” Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster, enters the NHRA playoffs, the Top Fuel Countdown to the Championship, in the No. 4 position in points, only 50 points away from the top spot. He raced to the semifinals in Indy from the No. 8 qualifying spot. Kalitta knows he has one of the top-performing dragsters in the class, and he is excited about the chance to battle for his first championship in his 16-year Top Fuel career.

“I think we’ve got a really good shot at it,” Kalitta, a 49-year old resident of Ann Arbor, Mich., said., “ Jim (Oberhofer, crew chief) and Troy (Fasching, assistant crew chief) and our entire Mac Tools team have given me a great race car to drive this year. We are going to give it our all and hopefully get that big trophy at the end of the season.”

So far in the 2013 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, Kalitta has raced to four semi-final finishes and one runner-up (Norwalk, Ohio). He has been No. 1 qualifier entering eliminations on five occasions this season.

BROWNSBURG, Ind. (September 2, 2013)—Alexis DeJoria powered her 10,000 horsepower Kalitta Motorsports Tequila Patrón Toyota Camry Funny Car to an impressive run of 4.036-seconds at 312.35-mph in the first round of eliminations at the 59th annual U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis, her quickest run of the 2013 season.
 
The run would become her second best of her professional Funny Car career and hold up to be the third quickest of the session, but despite the solid effort, DeJoria and her Tommy DeLago-led Patrón team would fall short to Ron Capps by a mere thousandth of a second in the opening race day matchup on Monday at the historic ‘Big Go.’
 
DeJoria entered race day qualified in the No. 12 spot with her 4.081-sec pass from Q4, the third quickest of that round. “It was really exciting to be able to race on Monday at such a monumental race and be a part of one of the quickest fields in Indy Funny Car history. The Top 15 qualified cars all ran in the 4.08’s or better, which just goes to show you how competitive this class is when we’re all that close together,” she said of the stacked 16-car field.”
 
“Capps and I were the first pair out of the gate this morning and my team gave me an incredible car to run with. That 4.036 was our best run of the season, and the second quickest of Team Patrón’s career. Unfortunately, we came up short by just a bit. I had a decent light with my .089, but he took the win with his 4.062 pass and we got beat by a hair on a holeshot. We may have lost that round but we’re certainly not going to hang our heads- that run was something to be proud of. Team Green has really turned a corner and big things are coming. This weekend has proved that we have a great car and with that combination we can win races. It’s been a good weekend for both Team Kalitta Funny Cars here in Indy. I’m very proud of my teammate Del Worsham and the DHL team for clinching their Countdown position this weekend. Now it’s on to Charlotte!”

THE RESULTS:

Del Worsham – Driver of the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car
Q1: 4.108 sec. at 300.00 mph
Q2: 4.045 sec. at 313.15 mph (One bonus point for third quickest of the session)
Q3: 4.091 sec. at 311.63 mph
Q4: 4.815 sec. at 166.21 mph

Qualifies: No. 3

David Grubnic – Driver of the Optima Batteries/Advance Auto Parts Top Fuel Dragster
Q1: 5.153 sec. at 133.25 mph
Q2: 3.876 sec. at 318.47 mph
Q3: 3.868 sec. at 270.48 mph
Q4: 3.824 sec. at 321.04 mph

Qualifies: No. 7

Doug Kalitta – Driver of the Mac Tools Top Fuel Dragster
Q1: 3.841 sec. at 311.13 mph
Q2: 3.829 sec. at 320.81 mph (Three bonus points for quickest of the session)
Q3: 3.843 sec. at 324.28 mph
Q4: 3.839 sec. at 319.29 mph

Qualifies: No. 8

Alexis DeJoria – Driver of the Tequila Patron Toyota Camry Funny Car
Q1: 6.847 sec. at 97.91 mph
Q2: 11.118 sec. at 74.82 mph
Q3: 4.132 sec. at 304.53 mph
Q4: 4.081 sec. at 309.77 mph (One bonus point for third quickest of the session)

Qualifies: No. 12

THE COMPETITION:

Top Fuel:
7) David Grubnic vs. 10) alBalooshi
8) Doug Kalitta vs.9) Vandergriff
Funny Car:
3) Del Worsham vs. 14) Courtney Force
12) Alexis DeJoria vs. 5) Ron Capps

Alexis DeJoria: Driver of the Kalitta Motorsports Tequila Patrón Toyota Camry

The Results:

Q1: 6.847 ET at 97.91 MPH

Q2: 11.118 ET at 74.82 MPH

Q3: 4.132 ET at 304.53 MPH

Q4: 4.081 ET at 309.77 MPH (third quickest run of the session)

The Competition:

No. 12 Alexis DeJoria vs. No. 5 Ron Capps

Quotables:

Alexis DeJoria, Driver

“I’m so happy to be out here racing at the U.S. Nationals in Indy. It’s ‘The Big Go’- the biggest race of the season, and everyone’s excited to be out here. The race weekend kind of got off to a weird start. Those first two sessions were rough. We smoked the tires in Q1, and then in Q2 we were dealt with an unfortunate circumstance when the weather changed drastically very quickly right before we pulled up to the line. Without enough time to make the necessary changes, our tune-up pretty much overpowered the track and we smoked the tires right out of the gate. Then, we ended up losing that extra qualifying session on Saturday night due to rain. Thankfully, we fared much better in Q3 and Q4. Our 4.081 run from Q4 was third quickest of the round, which is awesome. We did some testing last week which was very informative. We figured out a lot, and we’re really starting to have a good, solid car now. I’m excited to race on Monday at the U.S. Nationals, and ready for this Patrón Toyota Camry to go rounds tomorrow.”

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind., (Aug. 28, 2013) – Del Worsham, driver of the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car for Kalitta Motorsports, is kind of like a child waiting to open his gifts on Christmas morning these days as his level of anticipation has skyrocketed for this weekend’s annual running of the 59th annual running of the most prestigious drag racing event in the world, the NHRA U.S. Nationals at the Raceway at Indianapolis.

He and his team had a very successful test session in Indy last week and that has given him and his DHL team a huge boost of confidence going in to the “Super Bowl” of drag racing.

“In my 23 years of racing a nitro car, I’ve never been a part of a test session that good,” Worsham, a 43-year old resident of Chino Hills, Calif., said. “Our DHL Toyota ran great right from the start and just kept getting better and better. We made small adjustments as we went on and the car responded just how we wanted it to every time. I know our whole team is very excited to get back on the track and build on that momentum. It’s a great feeling. Hopefully our weekend of racing in Indy will be just as good and we’ll find a way to get in the Countdown, too.”

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On the Run with Ashley

70

Mello Yello Championship Points

Top Fuel (Unofficial)

1. Antron Brown (1513)
2. Steve Torrence (1482)
3. Leah Pritchett (1453)
4. Tony Schumacher (1121)
5. Brittany Force (1052) 
6. Doug Kalitta (1038)
7. Clay Millican (1014)
8. Terry McMillen (722)
9. Scott Palmer (649)
10. Troy Coughlin Jr. (576)
11. Shawn Langdon (568)
 

Funny Car (Unofficial)

1. Ron Capps (1383)
2. Robert Hight (1247)
3. Matt Hagan (1214)
4. Tommy Johnson Jr. (1180 or 1200)
5. Jack Beckman (1160)
6. Courtney Force (1012)
7. John Force (954)
8. Tim Wilkerson (792)
9. J.R. Todd (788)
10. Alexis DeJoria (664)

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