Kalitta Motorsports News

Shawn Langdon

Langdon earns first Funny Car semi-final result

Race Recap: Shawn Langdon and the Global Electronic Technology Toyota Camry Funny Car advanced to the semi-finals for the first time in Phoenix at the Arizona Nationals. 

The Global Electronic Technology team had a very nice Saturday qualifying effort with each of their runs ranked in the top five of the session. The final pass, a 3.927 second run at 329.42 mph, reset Langdon's career-bests in both elapsed time and mph. That run placed Langdon in the 10th position on the qualifying sheet and a draw of former champion Cruz Pedregon in the first round.

Langdon and Pedregon would leave side-by-side, but the Global Electronic Technology Camry was ahead shortly after. Pedregon suffered woes, but Langdon's ride was clean to the stripe. That was Langdon's first Funny Car round win.

The ride would not end there though. Langdon advanced to the quarterfinals to face Ron Capps. This time, Langdon got the better of the 2016 Funny Car champion. Langdon moved first and recorded the best elapsed time of the quarterfinals to earn the round win. Langdon's reaction time was the best of the session among the Funny Car class.

Langdon's solid sophomore Funny Car effort would end in the semifinals. The Global Electronic Technology Camry made another solid run, a 3.958, and Langdon moved first, but opponent Tommy Johnson Jr. was able to move around Langdon and advance to the finals. 

Qualified: No. 10 (3.927 sec., 329.42 mph) 

E1: Langdon defeated Pedregon - 3.965 sec., 328.22 mph to 5.112 sec., 152.95 mph 

E2: Langdon defeated Capps - 3.927 sec., 328.14 mph to 4.651 sec., 182.30 mph

E3: Langdon defeated by Johnson Jr. - 3.958 sec., 325.77 mph to 3.916 sec., 328.46 mph

Quotable: “Good thing is we were the only car to make three runs down the track. We tried to play it smart and we ended up getting lane choice in the semis. We moved the Global Electronic Technology Camry to the right lane. We had run in the left lane all day and had the tuneup for that, but we thought the right lane was better and it was. It was just even better than we expected. We lost in the semis. Not a bad weekend. We are making gains; I am growing as a driver. We are learning as a group. It was a good weekend. We can't complain about it much, just lost a good race." 

Point Standings: Eighth; leads John Force by nine points for ninth; trails Jonnie Lindberg by three points for sixth

Crampton Sunday PHX

Crampton unable to score round win despite solid qualifying effort

Race Recap: Richie Crampton and the Kalitta Air team suffered a tough first round loss at the Arizona Nationals. 

The qualifying portion of the weekend was solid for Crampton. In the afternoon session on Friday, Crampton nearly scored bonus points with a career-best tying run of 3.683 seconds. That seeded him fourth going into Saturday. The Kalitta Air team was unable to improve in the final two passes of qualifying and was bumped from fourth to fifth. His first round opponent was Scott Palmer.

Crampton got the jump at the line and was leading at the 60' line. However, the Kalitta Air machine had issues shortly after and Palmer was able to drive around Crampton's machine and score the round win. 

Qualified: No. 5 (3.683 sec., 323.27 mph) 

E1: Crampton defeated by Palmer - 5.061 sec., 144.95 mph to 3.768 sec., 325.45 mph 

Quotable: “Definitely a building weekend for this Kalitta Air Toyota team. I think we got caught waiting for an oil down in front of us. No excuses, but we have confidence we know where we wrong. We will be ready for Gainesville." 

Point Standings: 15th; trails Blake Alexander by four points for 14th

Kalitta Sunday PHX

Kalitta loses early in wild pedalfest

Race Recap: Doug Kalitta lost in the first round in a wild pedalfest against Billy Torrence earlier today at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park outside of Phoenix. 

The Mac Tools team did not have the qualifying effort that they are accustomed too. They had three solid passes in the mid 3.7 second range, but in quick conditions in Phoenix, that was only good enough for 11th overall. That gave the Mac Tools team a draw of Billy Torrence, who was in his first race of the season. 

The final pair of the first round of eliminations would put on a very memorable show. Both machines hit tire smoke quickly after the hit of the throttle and both drivers began pedaling quickly after. After getting on and off the throttle many times and putting on quite a show for the sold-out Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park crowd, Kalitta was defeated by the closest of margins.  

Qualified: No. 11 (3.742 sec., 328.78 mph)

E1: Kalitta defeated by B. Torrence - 6.714 sec., 154.46 mph to 6.570 sec., 138.34 mph

Quotable: “Not the weekend we were looking for with this Mac Tools Toyota. A wild pedalfest for sure and we came up just short. We will get this Mac Tools machine tuned up and head to Gainesville and try to score another win there."

Point Standings: Second; leads Tony Schumacher by four points for third; trails Steve Torrence by 39 points for first 

JR Todd PHX 

Todd has no luck in hard fought first round loss

Race Recap: J.R. Todd and the DHL/WIX Filters Toyota team put together a solid first round pass, but despite recording the fourth-best effort of the session, Todd was defeated.

Todd had a decent qualifying effort as the DHL Toyota was able to score a bonus point in the third qualifying session. The 3.919 seconds pass moved Todd inside the top half of the field for the second straight weekend. He earned the eighth starting spot and was paired in the first round with Winternationals winner Matt Hagan.

After watching most of the cars struggle to make clean runs, Todd and Hagan came to the the line as the final pair of nitro racing in the first round. Todd was ready and recorded the best reaction time of the class. The DHL Toyota reached the finish line in 4.017 seconds, which was the fourth best run of the session. Still, despite Todd's efforts on the line and the solid pass, Hagan was able to score the round win by laying down the second-best pass of the session. 

Qualified: No. 8 (3.919 sec., 323.43 mph) 

E1: Todd defeated by Hagan - 4.017 sec., 320.66 mph to 3.910 sec., 331.85 mph

Quotable: "We had some very tricky track conditions here in Phoenix and we definitely did not perform the way we needed to get by Hagan. We will go back and regroup and get ready for Gainesville." 

Point Standings: 10th; leads Cruz Pedregon by one point; trails John Force by 12 points 

Richie Crampton PHX.jpg

Richie Crampton, driver of the Kalitta Air Top Fuel Dragster

Q1: 3.755 sec. at 325.30 MPH
Q2: 3.683 sec. at 323.27 MPH
Q3: 9.742 sec. at 86.77 MPH
Q4: 8.447 sec. at 90.24 MPH

Starting Position: 5th

First Round Matchup: Scott Palmer

"I am stoked to be in the top half of the field. I think we have a good car for raceday. Everything is working well and I am excited for tomorrow."

3.683 second pass ties Crampton's career-best elapsed time (Dallas 2017). 

Doug Kalitta

Doug Kalitta, driver of the Mac Tools Top Fuel Dragster

Q1: 3.786 sec. at 321.42 MPH
Q2: 5.288 sec. at 132.96 MPH
Q3: 3.776 sec. at 319.52 MPH
Q4: 3.742 sec. at 328.78 MPH

Starting Position: 11th

First Round Matchup: Billy Torrence

Quotable: “We were looking for more in our Mac Tools machine, but we have a good starting point for tomorrow. We have a tough round one opponent, but I am confident in my team and tomorrow is going to be a solid day."

JR Todd

J.R. Todd, driver of the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car

Q1: 3.944 sec. at 324.20 MPH
Q2: 8.736 sec. at 81.04 MPH
Q3: 3.919 sec. at 323.43 MPH
Q4: 4.820 sec. at 164.17 MPH

Bonus Points: 1 pt. (Third-best run of the third session)

Starting Position: 8th

First Round Matchup:
Matt Hagan

"Honestly, not the qualifying effort we were looking for this weekend. We made a good run in Q3 and it is probably going to earn us last pair tomorrow. So hopefully we can see what everyone else does in front of us and make the right adjustments. We are hoping for a long day and four win lights."

Shawn Langdon

Shawn Langdon, driver of the Global Electronic Technology Toyota Camry Funny Car

Q1: No time; clutch malfunction
Q2: 4.333 sec. at 209.59 MPH
Q3: 3.937 sec. at 326.24 MPH
Q4: 3.927 sec. at 329.42 MPH

Starting Position: 10th

First Round Matchup: Cruz Pedregon

Quotable: "We are making good improvements. Yesterday wasn't good, but today we had a solid day. We still have a lot of work to do; I am still learning on every run and they are still learning on what the car is going to do. Top five runs keep us in the hunt and we know the areas we need to pick it up in. Hopefully we will be able to do that tomorrow and have a good day."

Notes: The 3.927 second pass at 329.42 MPH resets both of Langdon's career-bests.

Doug Kalitta

Kalitta plans to continue winning ways 

Phoenix Highlights: One win (2001); Three finals (2015, 2010, 2004); Four no. 1 qualifiers (2016, 2014, 2013, 2003)

Last Event Recap (NHRA Winternationals): Qualified fifth; Race Winner (Defeated Richie Crampton in the first round, Scott Palmer in the quarterfinals, Clay Millican in the semifinals and Tony Schumacher in the finals)

2017 NHRA Arizona Nationals Recap: Qualified fifth; First round defeat (Lost to Shawn Reed in the first round)

Quotable: “We started the season strong with the Mac Tools Toyota. I am so proud of the work my guys put in and the work they are doing now to prepare us for Phoenix. It should be a good weekend and I am fully confident that we can go back to back."

Career Stats: 459 starts; 627 round wins (ninth all-time); 44 wins (Fifth all-time in Top Fuel); 92 finals; 49 no.1 qualifiers (tied 14th all-time)

2018 Season: One Win (Pomona-I); Four round wins; First in the standings

2017 Season Recap: One win (Charlotte-II); Four finals (Pomona-I, Norwalk, Charlotte-II, St. Louis); Two no.1 qualifiers (Norwalk, Charlotte-II); 34 round wins; third in the standings

Noteworthy: Uncle and Team Kalitta founder Connie Kalitta celebrates his 80th birthday on Saturday; Fifth straight season with a win; Third straight season to lead the point standings at some point during the year; Next no.1 qualifier is 50th of his career, would be the 14th driver to earn that mark

Richie Crampton

Crampton ready for Phoenix

Last Event Recap (NHRA Winternationals): Qualified 10th; First round defeat (Lost to Doug Kalitta in the first round)

2017 NHRA Arizona Nationals Recap: Did not compete

Quotable: “We are excited to get to Phoenix for the Arizona Nationals. It helps that we have been there recently testing so we have some data to work off of. We are hopefully gonna give Connie a birthday weekend to remember.”

Career Stats: 80 starts; 75 round wins; Seven wins; Nine finals; Five no.1 qualifiers

2018 Season: One start; 13th in the standings

2017 Season Stats: Seven starts; One final (Charlotte-II); Five round wins

Shawn Langdon

Langdon looking to score first Funny Car round wins

Phoenix Highlights: One no.1 qualifier (2012)

Last Event Recap (NHRA Winternationals): Qualified 12th; First round defeat (Lost to Ron Capps)

2017 NHRA Arizona Nationals (Top Fuel): Did not compete

Quotable: “I am excited about Phoenix. My team has had some success there and the weather conditions look really good. It should be a really fast weekend. The Global Electronic Technology team had a solid debut in Pomona, and we are looking to have more success on Sunday this weekend.” 

Career Stats: 206 starts; 247 round wins; 14 wins; 30 finals; 18 no.1 qualifiers (Funny Car stats: One start)

2018 Season: One start; 10th in the standings

2017 Season Stats: 20 starts; Two finals (Dallas, Pomona II); 17 round wins; Seventh in the point standings

Noteworthy: Langdon will earn his 250th career round win with a final round appearance

JR Todd

With a solid start to the season, Todd plans for a longer run at the Arizona Nationals

Last Event Recap (NHRA Winternationals): Qualified seventh; Quarterfinalist (Defeated John Force in the first round, lost to Robert Hight in the quarterfinals)

2017 NHRA Arizona Nationals: Qualified seventh; Quarterfinalist (Defeated Alexis DeJoria in the first round, lost to Jim Campbell in the quarterfinals)

Quotable: “I am looking forward to getting back in the DHL Toyota Camry. I’m ready to pick up where we left off in Pomona and hopefully we can find a little more performance and go to the later rounds on Sunday.”

Career Stats: 173 starts; 168 round wins; 11 wins; 21 finals; 9 no.1 qualifiers (Funny Car stats: 25 starts; Two wins (Sonoma, Indianapolis); Three finals (Charlotte-I, Sonoma, Indianapolis); 19 round wins)

2018 Season: One start; One round win; Sixth in the point standings 

2017 Season Stats: 24 starts; Two wins (Sonoma, Indianapolis); Three finals (Charlotte-I, Sonoma, Indianapolis); 18 round wins; Ninth in the point standings

Doug Kalitta Wins Winternationals.JPG

Kalitta wins Winternationals

Race Recap: Doug Kalitta and the Mac Tools team scored an opening race win this evening at the NHRA Winternationals at the Auto Club Raceway in Pomona. 

In qualifying, Kalitta earned bonus points in three of the four sessions, and was consistent throughout. He was able to earn the fifth starting spot, which meant his teammate, Richie Crampton, in the first round.

Kalitta and Crampton were both stellar on the tree, as they recorded the top two reaction times of the session. Crampton had issues nearly immediately, and Kalitta was skating away before a big blowup before the finish line. Kalitta was able to still score the win, but it left a lot of work for the Mac Tools team.

He moved on to the second round. This time it was clean. Kalitta earned the best reaction time of the round, and led from the start to the finish as the Mac Tools ride got to the finish line in 3.760 seconds, which was enough to defeat Scott Palmer. 

Kalitta moved to the semi-finals, and his foe was the new national record holder Clay Millican. Kalitta again got a solid advantage at the starting line. However, the Mac Tools machine quickly dropped a cylinder. Kalitta stayed with it and was able to score the round win to move to his third straight Winternationals final round. It was his fourth final in Pomona in the last five events and tenth final at Auto Club Raceway of Pomona.

His opponent for the 17th time in the final round was Tony Schumacher. Doug was unfazed, and crew chief Jim Oberhofer proved to have the right tune up as Schumacher had issues, and Kalitta's Mac Tools machine was clean to the finish line.

It was Doug Kalitta's 44th career win in his 92nd final. It allows Kalitta to start the season atop of the point standings, and give the Mac Tools driver his second Winternationals win. 

Qualified: No. 5  (3.703 sec., 330.15 mph)

E1: Kalitta defeated Crampton - 4.121 sec., 217.56 mph to 4.234 sec., no speed given

E2: Kalitta defeated Palmer - 3.760 sec., 329.18 mph to 3.832 sec., 323.27 mph

E3: Kalitta defeated Millican - 3.866 sec., 307.58 mph to 4.860 sec., 145.02 mph

Final: Kalitta defeated Schumacher - 3.779 sec., 324.28 mph to 4.715 sec., 145.93 mph 

Quotable: “To get the first win of the season and get that monkey off your back is huge. It was kind of a lucky day. Our Mac Tools Toyota dragster coasted across the finish line twice, but we were still getting the win light. It was one of those crazy days and we went through a lot of parts, but we got it done."
"I can’t give enough credit to, not only the guys on my car, but to the entire team. The Kalitta Air guys all pitched in and we needed them. It was a thrash to make to at least three of the four rounds. It was just a great team effort."
"We love coming here to Pomona with all of the history of this place growing up with Connie. This was a big deal. It’s just a great place to run."
"My guys have a lot of work to do to prepare for Phoenix. We blew up a lot of stuff. They’ll be working right up until Phoenix, to get everything fresh again. But we’ll be ready. We’ll go there and see if we can qualify upfront and get another win.”

Point Standings: First, leads Tony Schumacher by 17

JR Todd Pomona .JPG

Todd's season starts with a consistent race car and a first round win

Race Recap: J.R. Todd and the DHL Toyota Camry was very consistent in the first race weekend of the year.

They started their race season with three solid passes out of four possible in qualifying. The best, a 3.908, came in the final qualifying session and scored Todd his first bonus point of the season. The run moved the DHL team inside the top half of the field and into the seventh starting spot. The first round draw was John Force.

What proved to be a long nitro session forced co-crew chiefs Jon Oberhofer and Todd Smith to keep reconsidering strategies. The ended up choosing the correct one. Todd got the jump at the tree and steadily pulled away from Force to score the round win. 

It advanced Todd to the quarterfinals where he drew reigning Funny Car champion Robert Hight. Todd again moved first, but Hight was able to get ahead and won by less than a car length. 

Qualified: No. 7 (3.908 sec., 326.79 mph) 

E1: Todd defeated J.Force - 3.997 sec., 323.58 mph to 4.465 sec., 202.76 mph

E2: Todd defeated by Hight - 3.969 sec., 324.36 mph to 3.937 sec., 329.10 mph

Quotable: "All in all a good weekend with the DHL Toyota. We went down the track five out of six runs. We definitely started off in a better direction than we ended last year. Not having lane choice in the second round played a little bit of a factor, but we still should have run better than that. Now we have something to build off of for Phoenix.”

Point Standings: Tied for sixth with Tim Wilkerson

Richie Cranpton Rob Flynn.JPG

Crampton's strong on the tree in his full-time Kalitta debut

Race Recap: Richie Crampton, driver of the Kalitta Air Top Fuel Dragster, was defeated by his teammate, Doug Kalitta, in the first round despite a class-best .033 reaction time.

Crew chiefs Connie Kalitta and Rob Flynn never got a qualifying pass that they were fully happy with. Crampton's best was a 3.782 at only 314.75 mph. That seeded Crampton in the 10th position and with a short field, lined him up against his teammate, Doug Kalitta.

Crampton and Kalitta were part of a marathon Top Fuel session. However, they were still focused once they reached the starting line. Crampton destroyed the tree with a .033 reaction time, but shortly after his Kalitta Air Top Fuel dragster encountered tire smoke. Crampton pedaled but was unable to catch up to Kalitta despite his eventual troubles before the finish line. 

Qualified: No. 10 (3.782 sec., 314.75 mph) 

E1: Crampton defeated by Kalitta - 4.121 sec., 217.56 mph to 4.234 sec., no speed recorded

Quotable: “It was good start simply to be here running the full 2018 season. We’re still battling consistency.  It wasn’t the ideal situation to have to run our teammate in the first round. We knew we had to go for it because Doug Kalitta and that Mac Tools Toyota team are among the best out here. Unfortunately, we didn’t quite hit our marks and fell to Doug. That’s ok.  We’ll regroup.  I’m looking forward to when we get to Phoenix. We tested pretty well there.  I think that’s going to be pretty valuable for us to get dialed in when we get over there to qualify. I think we’re going to have a good race there in the Kalitta Air DHL Toyota team.”

Point Standings: 13th; trails Terry McMillen by one point for 12th

First Funny Car Race Shawn Langdon.JPG

Langdon's Funny Car debut ends early

Race Recap: Shawn Langdon and the Global Electronic Technology Toyota Camry Funny Car turned a lot of heads this weekend with its flashy new scheme, but it was an early finish to Langdon's first official Funny Car run as he was defeated in the first round by Ron Capps.

Langdon started the weekend with a solid 3.949 second pass. With stellar reaction times all weekend, Langdon was impressive all weekend in his Global Electronic Technology Toyota Camry Funny Car. With 20 cars in the property, Langdon qualified right in the middle of field in the 12th spot. His first Funny Car opponent was the 2016 Funny Car champion Ron Capps. 

Langdon got the jump at the tree, but shortly after hit tire smoke. He pedaled his Global Electronic Technology Toyota Camry Funny Car, but Capps sped away and scored the round win.

Qualified: No. 12 (3.949 sec., 328.06 mph) 

E1: Langdon defeated by Capps - 10.060 sec., 79.68 mph to 4.833 sec., 167.53 mph 

Quotable: “It was difficult. We sat out there a long time. There was a lot of things going on with the Top Fuel cars in front.  The air was making some moves and it was drying out and we should have adjusted a little more for it.  The first race out, I’m not disappointed. I feel I could have done a better job pedaling our Global Electronic Technology Camry. I knew what my mistakes were. There was just so much going on in my first race out. I wasn’t patient enough with it. I’m happy with the overall team effort and I’m happy with my reaction time (fourth-quickest in the round). We’re learning. We’re going to have a good year. I feel it and I’m excited for it.” 

Point Standings: Tied for 10th with Del Worsham and Tommy Johnson Jr.

Doug Kalitta

Doug Kalitta, driver of the Mac Tools Top Fuel Dragster

Q1: 3.729 sec. at 328.06 MPH
Q2: 5.584 sec. at 109.86 MPH
Q3: 3.703 sec. at 330.15 MPH
Q4: 3.723 sec. at 326.95 MPH

Bonus Points: 3 pts. (Third best of the first session, third best of the third session, third best of the final session)
Starting Position: 5th
First Round Matchup: Richie Crampton
Quotable: “Solid qualifying effort to start the season for the Mac Tools team. We didn't want to race Richie in the first round; we know what the Kalitta Air car is capable of. We will get our Mac Tools team ready, and try to go several rounds tomorrow." 

Richie Crampton

Richie Crampton, driver of the Kalitta Air Top Fuel Dragster

Q1: 3.903 sec. at 287.60 MPH
Q2: 4.956 sec. at 146.46 MPH
Q3: 3.782 sec. at 314.75 MPH
Q4: 3.815 sec. at 286.68 MPH

Starting Position: 10th
First Round Matchup: Doug Kalitta 
Quotable: "I think we are a little better than what our qualifying result would show. Unfortunately, we have to race Doug, but I know it will still be a great drag race. Bright side of that is we know a Kalitta machine will be in the second round, which is good for all of our partners: Mac Tools, Kalitta Air, DHL, Toyota, WIX Filters and Red Line Oil. My guys are working hard, and I am confident we will make a good run tomorrow."

JR Todd

J.R. Todd, driver of the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car

Q1: 3.953 sec. at 322.04 MPH
Q2: 3.961 sec. at 319.29 MPH
Q3: 8.303 sec. at 85.59 MPH
Q4: 3.908 sec. at 326.79 MPH

Bonus Points: 1 pt. (Third best in the final session)
Starting Position: 7th
First Round Matchup: John Force
Quotable: "It was great to move into the top half that last qualifying session. We were trying to run that earlier in the day, and didn't get down the track. But it was a good way to start the season, getting down the track three out of the four runs. I am hoping we can do it four times tomorrow."

Shawn Langdon

Shawn Langdon, driver of the Global Electronic Technology Toyota Camry Funny Car

Q1: 3.949 sec. at 328.06 MPH
Q2: No time; competitor hit timing block into Langdon's lane
Q3: 8.442 sec. at 79.31 MPH
Q4: 4.454 sec. at 194.58 MPH

Starting Position: 12th
First Round Matchup: Ron Capps
Quotable: "It is a whole new set of drivers I am facing tomorrow, so it is pretty cool that I get to race Ron Capps first. I followed his career for a long time, so I am excited to race him. I feel good. We would have liked to have the Global Electronic Technology Toyota to be a little better in qualifying, but we are learning as a group. We are just going to give it our best shot. I feel good on the tree. This team is going to be dangerous this season."

kstrong banner

NHRA Next Event

Running a Mac Tools Mobile Franchise is One of the Best Jobs You Can Have.

Mello Yello Championship Points

Top Fuel (Unofficial)

1. Steve Torrence (2219)
2t. Clay Millican (2169)
2t. Tony Schumacher (2169)
4. Leah Pritchett (2118)
5. Antron Brown (2116)
6. Doug Kalitta (2103)
7. Mike Salinas (2067)
8. Terry McMillen (2062)
9. Scott Palmer (2053)
10. Brittany Force (2052)

Funny Car (Unofficial)

1. J.R. Todd (2166)
2. Robert Hight (2143)
3. Courtney Force (2141)
4. Ron Capps (2137)
5. Matt Hagan (2112)
6. Tim Wilkerson (2101)
7. Tommy Johnson Jr. (2090)
8. Jack Beckman (2080)
9. John Force (2064)
10. Shawn Langdon (2054)