HOUSTON, Texas (April 26, 2015) – Doug Kalitta, driver of the Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster, picked up his first win of the season today at Houston Raceway Park. Kalitta defeated Tony Schumacher in the final round to earn his 36th career win.
Kalitta qualified fourth and defeated Troy Buff and Larry Dixon in the first two rounds. Kalitta’s semi-final opponent was Spencer Massey. A warm tricky track meant both Massey and Kalitta went up in smoke. The driver of the Mac Tools Top Fuel Dragster did a masterful job driving the machine to move to the finals.
He would face Tony Schumacher. Live television meant quick turn around times, but the Mac Tools team was up to the challenge. The entire Kalitta Motorsports family was on the line to watch the Mac Tools group. Schumacher took a chance on the tree, but was not able to defeat Jim Oberhofer’s tune-up as Kalitta’s 3.82 second run was able to defeat Schumacher’s 4.019 effort.
Kalitta moved past Don Garlits for sixth all-time and earned a spot in the coveted Traxxas Shootout.
“Jim Oberhofer and Troy Fasching made great calls,” said Kalitta. “I was looking for the win light and when I saw it that was all that matterred. Thrilled to pick up the victory for the Mac Tools group.”
Alexis DeJoria, driver of the Patrón XO Café Incendio Toyota Camry Funny Car, turned to her home state of Texas looking to build off of a semi-final finish at the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series’ most recent stop in Las Vegas. She started Friday with the second best pass, trailing only her Kalitta Motorsports teammate. Tommy DeLago and Glen Huszar mastered the set-up on Saturday with two consistent passes in the low 4.1 second range.
DeJoria’s first round competitor was Bob Bode. This was the first time that DeJoria had drawn businessman Bode, who competes part-time in the series. DeJoria used her Toyota Racing horsepower to drive past Bode with a stellar 4.068 second run at nearly 315 mph. Her quarterfinal matchup was fellow Funny Car female competitor Courtney Force. DeJoria was set up for a great reaction time, but released her foot just a fraction of a second too soon to give the race to Force.
J.R. Todd, driver of the Red Line Oil/Kalitta Air Top Fuel Dragster, was a feared driver going into Sunday’s eliminations. Todd earned four of six possible bonus points on Saturday to prove the Red Line Oil team had mastered the hot conditions. Todd earned the sixth starting position to draw Texan Steve Torrence. Although Todd had the second-best reaction time in the first round, he was unable to get past Torrence.
“Our car ran well all weekend and to have a teammate win is always exciting,” said Todd. “We are looking to follow Doug’s lead in Atlanta with the Red Line Oil car.”
Del Worsham, driver of the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car, earned several bonus points in qualifying to earn the second starting position. Even though he qualified near the top of the ladder, Worsham drew the 16-time champion John Force in the first round. Worsham had much success in the first round this season, but it was not his weekend versus Force as the Camry fell to tire smoke early in the session.”
“Rough to lose in the first round,” said Worsham. “We are still confident in our set-up and look forward to going for the win in Atlanta.”
After six races, Team Kalitta nitro race cars have won one event, advanced to four final rounds and earned two no.1 qualifying positions. The NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series has next two weekends off.
Doug Kalitta – Driver of the Mac Tools Top Fuel Dragster:
No. 4 Qualifier (3.760 sec., 324.12 mph)
E1: Kalitta defeated Buff – 3.732 sec., 325.77 mph to 3.844 sec., 313.88 mph
E2: Kalitta defeated Dixon – 3.751 sec., 323.50 mph to 3.788 sec., 316.97 mph
E3: Kalitta defeated Massey – 4.177 sec., 256.75 mph to 5.484 sec., 105.38 mph
E4: Kalitta defeated Schumacher – 3.820 sec., 324.98 mph to 4.014 sec., 225.60 mph
Alexis DeJoria – Driver of the Patrón XO Café Incendio Toyota Camry Funny Car:
No. 4 Qualifier (4.041 sec., 310.77 mph)
E1: DeJoria defeated Bode – 4.068 sec., 313.44 mph to 4.620 sec., 313.44 mph
E2: DeJoria defeated C. Force – foul to 4.113 sec., 316.60 mph
J.R. Todd – Driver of the Red Line Oi/Kalitta Air Top Fuel Dragster:
No. 6 Qualifier (3.770 sec., 321.50 mph)
E1: Todd defeated by S. Torrence – 3.755 sec., 326.40 mph to 3.759 sec., 325.14 mph
Del Worsham – Driver of the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car:
No. 2 Qualifier (4.023 sec., 314.97 mph)
E1: Worsham defeated by J. Force – 4.800 sec., 208.71 mph to 4.093 sec., 317.87 mph
Mello Yello Championship Points:
Top Fuel (Unofficial)
1. Tony Schumacher (474)
2. Spencer Massey (441)
3. Antron Brown (437)
4. Shawn Langdon (406)
5. Doug Kalitta (390)
6. Richie Crampton (374)
7. Steve Torrence (325)
8. Larry Dixon (318)
9. Clay Millican (312)
10. J.R. Todd (299)
Funny Car (Unofficial)
1. Ron Capps (431)
2. Matt Hagan (425)
3. Del Worsham (401)
4. Robert Hight (397)
5. Tommy Johnson Jr. (369)
6. Jack Beckman (353)
7. Alexis DeJoria (328)
7. John Force (328)
9. Courtney Force (301)
10. Cruz Pedregon (291)
Konnekt with Kalitta Motorsports:
For more info about Kalitta Motorsports including exclusive content such as videos, photos and more, please visit #KalittaStrong online –
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.
Del Worsham drives the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car for Team Kalitta. Alexis DeJoria pilots the Tequila Patrón XO Café Incendio Toyota Camry Funny Car. J.R. Todd drives the Red Line Oil/Kalitta Air 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, by Tommy DeLago and Glen Huszar on the Tequila Patrón XO Café Incendio Toyota Camry Funny Car, and by Jim Oberhofer on the Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster. Connie serves as crew chief on the Red Line Oil/ Kalitta Air Top Fuel dragster.
Associate sponsors on Kalitta Motorsports’ race cars include Justice Brothers, Patrón XO Café Incendio, Phoenix Fuel Converter, Red Line Oil, SealMaster, Summit Racing Equipment, Technicoat Companies, TMS Titanium, Toyota and Ziebart.