Kalitta leads on raceday after outstanding qualifying efforts – Team Kalitta Post-Race Report – Charlotte



CHARLOTTE (April 24, 2016) – Doug Kalitta, driver of the Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster, led the Kalitta contingent on Sunday earning another final round quad appearance.

Kalitta was stout throughout qualifying. Earning two bonus points to claim the fourth qualifying spot on Saturday, Jim Oberhofer had the Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster turned up and ready to go for raceday. Doug’s first quad meant tough competition with Clay Millican, Smax Smith and Scott Palmer. However, Doug was ready. His Mac Tools dragster got just nipped at the finish line by Clay Millican, but second place in the 4-Wides in the first two rounds is not a bad place to be.

Next up, Kalitta would face Millican again, but this time Tony Schumacher and Steve Torrence would be the competition. This time, Doug came on top. He left the starting line first with an outstanding .048 second light and reached the finish line first to advance to another 4-Wide Nationals final quad. Millican also joined him in advancing.

It was a marquee draw as the Top Fuel finals put the top four in points against each other: Brittany Force, Antron Brown, Kalitta and Millican. Kalitta was ready at the line again, but this time the Mac Tools machine would fall to tire smoke yielding the second career win to Brittany Force.

“Another solid weekend for the Mac Tools Toyota team, but we want to win,” said Kalitta. “I am excited to head back to Houston, where we won last year, and see if we can do it again.”

Kalitta retained his third place in the point standings leaving Charlotte. He is the only Top Fuel driver to hold a spot in the top three after every race this season.

J.R. Todd, driver of the SealMaster Top Fuel dragster, started Sunday morning confident. The SealMaster team laid down the best run of Saturday to give him his best start of the season, a second. The 3.74 second run was in conditions similar to those in raceday, so Todd was feeling good going into the only 4-Wide event of the season.

Todd’s day started with the SealMaster Track Walk as he walked the track with his NASCAR ThorSport Racing teammates, Rico Abreu, Matt Crafton, Cameron Hayley and Ben Rhodes. But then it became race-time and Todd was prepared. Easily delivering the best run of the quad, Todd took it stripe-to-stripe to deliver a first round win over Richie Crampton, the Greek and Terry McMillen. Crampton advanced as well and joined him in the second round quad. Todd also claimed top speed at 328.06 mph. This is the fourth time in five events that a Kalitta Top Fueler has earned top speed.

The second round draw would not be easy with points leader Brittany Force and Las Vegas’ winner Antron Brown with them. Todd again was ready and delivered the best light of the entire quad. However, shortly after, Todd’s SealMaster ride fell to tire smoke yielding the final quad spots to Force and Brown.

“Good start to the day, but definitely a much quicker end then the SealMaster team would have liked,” said Todd. “It was great to have the NASCAR guys to the track today and we wanted to put an all day show on for them. But we will regroup get this SealMaster ride ready and make the drive to Texas.”

Todd claimed the sixth points position leaving Charlotte.

Del Worsham, driver of the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car, came into Charlotte as part of history. The defending winner of the fall race at zMax Dragway, Worsham was the only driver the has titles in both Top Fuel and Funny Car at the iconic facility.

However, Worsham does not have a Funny Car 4-Wide race win, and looked early to avenge last season’s close runner-up finish. Worsham’s crew chiefs Jon Oberhofer and Nicky Boninfante were solid on Saturday with two consecutive three second runs allowing Worsham to slot in the field among the top five starters.

Every Funny Car draw proved to be tough and Worsham’s was no different. Coming to the line with Courtney Force, Cruz Pedregon and John Hale, Worsham was ready. He was solid off the tree and just missed defeating Pedregon, coming up short by mere inches.

“Not what we were hoping for today with this DHL Toyota Camry,” said Worsham. “However, we have another opportunity in just a couple days in Houston and we look to capitalize there.

Worsham retained a top ten points placement leaving the 4-Wide Nationals.

Alexis DeJoria, driver of the Tequila Patrón Toyota Camry Funny Car, moved to Charlotte on a high after the Las Vegas triumph and did not slow down on Friday and Saturday. Tommy DeLago and the entire Patrón team posted three straight outstanding passes on Friday and Saturday. Her last two runs reset the track record both times and delivered DeJoria her first pole since the World Finals in 2014. It was her second at Charlotte and fourth overall.

However, even drawing the first spot did not yield and easy draw as she faced Tim Wilkerson, Robert Hight and Jeff Diehl. DeJoria was ready at the tree earning the best light of her entire quad, but the Camry fell to smoke instantly yielding the round wins to Diehl and Wilkerson.

DeJoria leaves zMax in the eighth position in the standings.

Through five events on the 2016 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season, Team Kalitta owns one win, five final round appearances and two no.1 qualifiers. NHRA is going back-to-back and head to Texas for the NHRA Spring Nationals in Houston.

Doug Kalitta – Driver of the Mac Tools Top Fuel Dragster: No. 4 Qualifier (3.752 sec., 325.92 mph) E1: Kalitta defeated Smith and Palmer – 3.755 sec., 326.56 mph to 4.197 sec., 276.07 mph and no run

E2: Kalitta defeated Torrence and Schumacher – 3.777 sec., 325.92 mph to 6.694 sec., 96.29 mph and 9.205 sec., 76.48 mph

Final: Kalitta defeated by Force – 4.792 sec., 161.34 mph to 3.764 sec., 319.98 mph

J.R. Todd – Driver of the SealMaster Top Fuel Dragster: No. 2 Qualifier (3.743 sec., 324.28 mph) E1: Todd defeated Karamesines and McMillen – 3.736 sec., 328.06 mph to 4.074 sec., 297.02 mph and 3.816 sec., 316.52 mph

E2: Todd defeated by Force and Brown – 9.531 sec., 81.70 mph to 3.747 sec., 321.88 mph and 5.779 sec., 210.67 mph

Del Worsham – Driver of the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car: No. 5 Qualifier (3.963 sec., 317.57 mph) E1: Worsham defeated by C.Force and Pedregon – 3.981 sec., 317.49 mph to 3.979 sec., 320.97 mph and 4.003 sec., 309.91 mph

Alexis DeJoria – Driver of the Tequila Patrón Toyota Camry Funny Car: No. 1 Qualifier (3.934 sec., 321.04 mph) **CAREER BEST ELAPSED TIME** E1: DeJoria defeated by Wilkerson and Diehl – 6.874 sec., 27.86 mph to 3.934 sec., 322.34 mph and 5.359 sec., 210.47 mph

Mello Yello Championship Points: Top Fuel (Unofficial) 1. Brittany Force (428) 2. Antron Brown (365) 3. Doug Kalitta (344) 4. Clay Millican (318) 5. Steve Torrence (310) 6. J.R. Todd (289) 7. Tony Schumacher (242) 8. Terry McMillen (242) 9. Richie Crampton (240) 10. Leah Pritchett (220)

Funny Car (Unofficial) 1. Robert Hight (369) 2. Ron Capps (361) 3. John Force (352) 4. Tim Wilkerson (334) 5. Courtney Force (322) 6. Del Worsham (318) 7. Jack Beckman (307) 8. Alexis DeJoria (277) 9. Chad Head (270) 10. Cruz Pedregon (258)

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 six world championships and over 100 national event titles in five different professional drag racing sanctioning bodies since it was established by Connie in 1959.

Team Kalitta is the home of the 2015 NHRA Mello Yello Funny Car World Champions, Del Worsham. He drives the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car. Alexis DeJoria pilots the Tequila Patrón Toyota Camry Funny Car. J.R. Todd drives the SealMaster Top Fuel dragster while Connie’s nephew, Doug Kalitta, pilots the Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster. Connie serves as head tuner for all Team Kalitta entries. He is assisted by co-crew chiefs Jon Oberhofer and Nick Boninfante on the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car, Tommy DeLago and Glen Huszar on the Tequila Patrón Toyota Camry Funny Car, Rob Flynn on the SealMaster Top Fuel dragster and Jim Oberhofer on the Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster.

Associate sponsors on Kalitta Motorsports’ race cars include ARP, AutoDesk CAM, Champion, Cogistics, Darton Sleeves, DHL, Justice Brothers, Kalitta Air, Mac Tools, Optima Batteries, Phoenix Fuel Converter, Racing Electronics, Red Line Oil, SealMaster, Summit Racing Equipment, Technicoat Companies, Tequila Patrón, TMS Titanium, Toyota and Ziebart.

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/TeamKalitta Twitter: www.twitter.com/TeamKalitta YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/TeamKalitta Instagram: www.instagram.com/TeamKalitta