LAS VEGAS, Nev. (October 23, 2013)— Alexis DeJoria and the Kalitta Motorsports Tequila Patrón Toyota Camry Funny Car team made their fourth semi-final appearance of the 2013 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season at the 13th annual NHRA Toyota Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Sunday.
After qualifying in the No. 12 spot out of twenty-four competing Funny Cars, DeJoria faced NHRA Championship contender Matt Hagan in round one of eliminations. She powered her 10,000 horsepower Tequila Patrón hot rod to a 4.084-seconds at 312.71-mph run, advancing her to round two with lane choice over Ron Capps.
“I knew that first round matchup was going to be a tough one. Hagan was fighting for Championship points and we knew how important it was for him to go rounds today,” said DeJoria, who once again raced her pink-accented Patrón Toyota Camry in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month. “I’ve been fighting a cold all weekend. It started with a really bad migraine and lingered the whole time I’ve been here, so I haven’t been feeling that great but I tried to stay focused and keep a clear head. Thankfully, I was able to cut a good light with my .036-second reaction time and our car outran his, allowing us to move on to round two.”
“In the second round we squared off against Ron Capps. Once again, I had a great light, our car ran well and we were able to cross the stripe first and set off the win light with our 4.126 [sec] versus his 4.132 [sec]. After that, it was on to the semi-finals.”
The semi-final round found DeJoria facing John Force. Unfortunately, the Patrón car smoked the tires early into the run. Shortly after, Force also ran into tire smoke. DeJoria pedaled the car to try and make up ground but at that point, Force was too far ahead and was able to take the win, ending Team Green’s day.
“We would’ve liked to go to the finals, of course, but I’m still very proud of what we were able to accomplish today. Our car has really turned around as of late and to be able to make it all the way to the semis was a nice boost for our team. It’s clear that we’ve been making good progress over these past few months. I was glad to be able to finish strong at Toyota’s title event, and put on a good show for my friends and family who came out to support us this weekend,” said DeJoria, whose father, John Paul DeJoria was honored as the Grand Marshall of the event.
Sunday’s semi-final finish was DeJoria’s fifth of her Funny Car career. Team Patrón has one more shot of winning the coveted Wally at the 49thannual Auto Club NHRA Finals in Pomona, Calif., Nov. 7-10. For more information, please visit www.alexisdejoria.com
October 27, 8PM-11PM EST
About Alexis DeJoria
Alexis DeJoria, daughter of the famed John Paul DeJoria, co-founder of John Paul Mitchell Systems and proud owner of Tequila Patrόn, is a professional NHRA race car driver, competing in the nitro Funny Car class on the Kalitta Motorsports team. Alexis drives a Tequila Patrόn-sponsored 2013 Toyota Camry. Alexis, who had all the opportunity in the world to pursue any type of career, felt strongly about following her passion, and her need for adrenaline drove her to pursue the unlikely profession of auto-racing. The determination to ‘blaze her own trail’ continues to drive her and push her to higher levels in male dominated sport of drag racing.
About Kalitta Motorsports
Based in Ypsilanti, Mich., Kalitta Motorsports is a Top Fuel and Funny Car drag racing team in the NHRA (National Hot Rod Association) Mello Yello Drag Racing Series. The team was founded and is owned by drag racing icon Connie “the Bounty Hunter” Kalitta. For more than 50 years, Connie has been involved in the sport as a driver, tuner, and an owner. Kalitta Motorsports is one of the most successful teams in the history of auto racing with five world championships and over 50 national event titles in five different professional drag racing sanctioning bodies since it was established by Connie in 1959.