Kalitta Motorsports News
YPSILANTI, Mich., (July 3, 2015) - Team Kalitta is pleased to announce its newest multi-year associate partnership with Autodesk, Inc. Beginning this weekend at the Summit Racing Equipment Nationals in Norwalk, Ohio, Autodesk branding will be featured on all four of Kalitta Motorsports’ top National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) entries and in the new CNC shop located in the teams’ headquarters in Ypsilanti, Mich.
Autodesk, Inc. first introduced its AutoCAD technology in 1982. Since then, they have become a leader in 3D design software. Autodesk’s technology reaches far beyond the race shop as they are leaders in the manufacturing, architecture, engineering and construction and media and entertainment industries, among others.
Kalitta Motorsports will be utilizing two Autodesk software solutions: Autodesk Inventor, which is 3D CAD software that offers professional-grade tools for 3D mechanical design, documentation and product simulation; and Autodesk Inventor HSM, which allows Kalitta Motorsports’ CNC team to rapidly produce machined parts designed in Inventor. The Inventor HSM software will also help the team to develop parts for the two Funny Car teams.
“Autodesk has the best software out there,” said Kalitta Motorsports CNC Shop Manager Tim Evans, who has 25 years of experience in motorsports engineering. “This new partnership and our team’s use of Inventor and Inventor HSM will help us deliver better designs and better cars in less time.”
This new partnership will bring Autodesk’s CAM logo to Kalitta Motorsports’ four championship contending machines. The drivers are as follows: Doug Kalitta, driver of the Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster; J.R. Todd, driver of the SealMaster Top Fuel dragster; Del Worsham, driver of the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car, and Alexis DeJoria, driver of the Tequila Patrón XO Café Incendio Toyota Camry Funny Car. These drivers have brought home three rookie of the year trophies, nearly 80 victories and over 1,000 career round wins. All four currently retain positions among the top ten drivers in their classes.
In addition to the logos on the vehicles, large Autodesk banners will be also featured in the brand new CNC portion of the shop, which recently received five new HAAS machines.
NORWALK, Ohio - (July 1, 2015) - After one weekend off, the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series returns to action this weekend in Norwalk, Ohio, for the Summit Racing Equipment Nationals. The fan-favorite race is in just its ninth season and Kalitta Motorsports plans on finally equaling their Summit Racing Equipment Nationals qualifying success into raceday results.
One week after announcing the growth of the SealMaster program, Kalitta Motorsports will also announce a brand new partner to the team during the race weekend.
Del Worsham, driver of the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car, could hit two milestones this weekend. Prior to joining Kalitta Motorsports in 2012, Worsham drove the Al-Anabi Top Fuel Dragster to the Norwalk win along his way to a Top Fuel Championship in 2011. If he could earn the win this weekend, Worsham would be the only driver to win in NHRA’s top two classes at Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park.
In addition, Worsham would earn his 500th career round win by advancing to his third final round appearance after earning such finishes in Phoenix and Charlotte earlier this season.
Worsham returns to the Summit Racing Equipment Nationals as the reigning no.1 qualifier. His 4.000 second run in qualifying held as the track record coming into this weekend’s event.
“The Bader family always puts on a great event,” said Worsham. “The Norwalk race is always a great one and I look forward to putting on a great show for the fans.”
Worsham is returning to the track for the first time since Bristol, where he beat Chad Head in the first round and set his career best MPH mark as Jon Oberhofer and Nicky Boninfante tuned the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car to a 322.58 mph mark in the final qualifying round on Saturday evening.
Norwalk fans can meet Worsham at the Toyota Pit Pass display on Friday and Saturday at 4pm.
Doug Kalitta, driver of the Mac Tools Top Fuel Dragster, has come close many times, but is still searching for his first Summit Racing Equipment Nationals trophy.
Kalitta briefly held the track record last season and in 2013 earned one of his 42 No. 1 qualifying positions at the Summit Racing Equipment Nationals before advancing to the final round.
After two races of close finishes, Kalitta spent time in Bristol on the top of the qualifying heap before just missing the no.1 qualifying spot, earning two bonus points in the final session and slotting in second. The Mac Tools team rebounded on Sunday with round wins over Terry McMillen and Dave Connolly to earn their fourth semi-final or better event of the season.
“I’m a big fan of Norwalk and their unique schedule,” said Kalitta. “It is the closest race to home and one I definitely one I want to take the Mac Tools dragster to the winner’s circle.”
Kalitta, who is less than one race from the top two in points, will sign autographs in the SealMaster display on Saturday before participating in the SealMaster Track Walk on Sunday with his teammate, J.R. Todd.
J.R. Todd, driver of the SealMaster Top Fuel Dragster, hit the 100 round win milestone at our last event, and now looks to another milestone; his first victory at Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park.
Todd advanced to his second semi-final appearance of the season at Bristol Dragway. He defeated entries of Brittany Force and Tony Schumacher to earn round wins 99 and 100, while earning the best reaction time of the day in the Top Fuel class.
This weekend, Todd debuts the SealMaster Top Fuel Dragster. SealMaster, based not far from Norwalk, has been a Team Kalitta partner since 2014. This is the first of two primary events for the SealMaster branding, which will return in two events at Bandimere Speedway, where Todd won last season.
“It is always cool to debut new colors,” said Todd. “I am excited to represent SealMaster and plan on taking this new wrap to the Summit Racing Equipment winner’s circle.”
This is the third consecutive Norwalk event Todd has participated in. He earned a top five qualifying position last season. With last week’s success, Todd has moved further from the top ten bubble and sits just a little more than a round behind Force in eighth in the standings.
Todd will also be at the SealMaster display on Saturday and will walk with the fans on Sunday for the SealMaster Track Walk.
Alexis DeJoria, driver of the Patrón XO Café Incendio Toyota Camry Funny Car, heads into the season’s halfway way point just two points outside of Robert Hight in eighth in the point standings.
Norwalk has not been kind to DeJoria, who is in her fourth season in the Funny Car class. She is chasing that elusive first round win at a track not far from Kalitta Motorsports headquarters. A round win would be the 60th for her career.
DeJoria had a solid fourth qualifying effort in Bristol earning a top five spot before falling to tire smoke in the first round on Sunday.
DeJoria will join her teammate at the Toyota Pit Pass on Friday and Saturday.
This is the second of three consecutive live televised NHRA events. Live coverage starts at 1PM on Sunday on ESPN.
YPSILANTI, Mich., (June 23, 2015) SealMaster, a valued Kalitta Motorsports partner since 2014, will expand its role to the primary level on J.R. Todd’s Top Fuel Dragster at upcoming events in Norwalk and Denver. This is SealMaster’s first primary sponsorship at the pro level of NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series.
Based less than an hour from Summit Motorsports Park in Sandusky, Ohio, the franchisor distributes SealMaster pavement maintenance products and equipment through franchises coast to coast. The company’s products and equipment are sold in every state where the NHRA Mello Yello Series races, and SealMaster franchisees and customers have enjoyed Kalitta Motorsports hospitality and winning tradition for two seasons.
“SealMaster’s relationship with Kalitta Motorsports and the NHRA has flourished over two seasons,” said Debbie Hufford, spokesperson for SealMaster. “We’re excited to expand this program to the primary level of J.R. Todd’s Top Fuel Dragster to further spread the word to NHRA fans about SealMaster’s top-quality pavement maintenance products and equipment. We want to let international fans know, too, that we have a global distribution system and our products are available worldwide.”
The black scheme makes its debut at the home race for the SealMaster brand, before taking on the altitude in Denver, where Todd walked away with the victory last season. The Mile-High Nationals have been a great place for Todd throughout his NHRA career. He earned his first career victory in Denver in 2006, which was part of his historic run to the AAA Road to the Future trophy.
“SealMaster has chosen two great races, and I am excited to represent all the outstanding SealMaster franchisees,” said Todd, who earned his 100th career round win this past weekend in Bristol. “SealMaster really takes their NHRA partnership seriously, and I am honored to be able to educate the awesome NHRA fans about pavement maintenance. SealMaster is the best at what they do, and we are confident we can take the SealMaster tradition and be the best in Norwalk and Denver.”
Fans will have the opportunity to meet J.R. Todd as he walks with the fans prior to the race action during the SealMaster Track Walk. SealMaster, a NHRA partner, backs the track walk at all 24 NHRA pro events. Fans can also meet Todd, along with teammate Doug Kalitta, at the SealMaster display in Norwalk, as the SealMonster display dragster makes its return to the NHRA Nitro Alley.
“It is always great when a sponsor continuously wants to grow their program,” said Jim Oberhofer, vice president of operations, Kalitta Motorsports. “SealMaster has been such a solid part of the Kalitta Motorsports family and we could not be more excited that they have decided to grow to the primary level.”
BRISTOL, Tenn. (June 21, 2015) – J.R. Todd, driver of the Kalitta Air Top Fuel dragster, picked up his 100th career round win earlier today at Bristol Dragway as he joined his teammate, Doug Kalitta, driver of the Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster, in the semi-finals of the Thunder Valley Nationals, a race where team owner and legend Connie Kalitta was named as a Legend of Thunder Valley.
Todd had a solid qualifying session, as he guided the Kalitta Air Top Fuel dragster down the Bristol pavement in three of four sessions. His best would be the night session on Friday night. His 3.790 second run was fourth best at that point, but due to weather teams were able to advance in the fourth session, where Todd dropped a cylinder. He fell to ninth, and his first opponent was top ten contender Brittany Force.
They were first pair to hit Bristol Dragway, but Todd was ready. He blazed down the track in 3.822 seconds to easily defeat Brittany Force. Rival Tony Schumacher was the next up, but due to a mechanical malfunction, Schumacher was unable to make the call. Todd still laid down a .033 second reaction time to be best in the round and earn him his 100th round win. Tire smoke got the best of him in the semi-finals versus Larry Dixon, but he again had the top reaction time in the class.
“I really wanted to win on Father’s Day for Connie and these Kalitta Air guys,” said Todd. “We are still struggling a little bit in the heat, and look to get that figured out in Norwalk.”
Todd moved to just one round from eighth in the point standings.
Kalitta rolled through four great passes in qualifying. With a good handle on Bristol Dragway and an unexpected night session on Saturday, Jim Oberhofer tuned the Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster up. A 3.750 second run moved Kalitta all the way up to second in the qualifying order and a pairing with Terry McMillen on Sunday.
McMillen was a victim of tire smoke almost immediately, and Kalitta laid down the best run of the whole first session. The Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster ran a 3.814 at over 320 mph. Dave Connolly tried next, but he also could not compete with Kalitta as his tire smoke moved the Mac Tools team to the semi-finals.
Kalitta got Richie Crampton on the tree in the semi-finals, but Crampton got Kalitta at the finish line to end his day.
“Solid day for the Mac Tools team, but we wanted the Wally,” said Kalitta. “We will take this week off, regroup and look to get them in Norwalk.”
Kalitta heads into the week off in the sixth place in the point standings.
Del Worsham, driver of the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car, continued his consistent run in these three consecutive races. Worsham earned six bonus points in qualifying as he was the second best pass in each of the first three sessions, and then laid a near three second run on the field in the final qualifying session. His 4.006 second pass was good enough for fourth best and a matchup against friend Chad Head in the first round.
A little oil in the pair prior to Worsham caused the car to sit in the heat for an extended period of time, but it did not affect the performance of the DHL Toyota Camry. Head smoked the tires, but it would have been difficult to defeat Worsham, who advanced to a 4.116 second pass. His matchup in the second session was the car that took out his teammate, Tony Pedregon.
Pedregon proved to have Team Kalitta’s card in Bristol as he was able to get past Worsham with a slight reaction time advantage in the second round.
Worsham remains the top driver among both nitro classes in the point standings without a win and leaves Bristol Dragway in the fourth position.
Alexis DeJoria, driver of the Patrón XO Café Incendio Toyota Camry Funny Car, was solid in what ended up being two night sessions at Bristol Dragway. On Friday evening, DeJoria ran one of two 4.0 second runs, a 4.075, to place her inside the top half of the funny car class. However, after waiting out countless raindrops, Tommy DeLago tuned DeJoria to an even better number. On Saturday evening, DeJoria crossed the finish line in just 4.025 seconds to move her from seventh to fifth in the qualifying order. Her first round matchup was former champion Tony Pedregon.
Racing on Sunday saw us reach the highest temperatures of the weekend, and DeJoria just hazed the tires at half-track to be defeated by Pedregon. She slipped one spot to ninth in the point standings.
After 11 races, Team Kalitta nitro race cars have won one event, advanced to five final rounds and earned two no.1 qualifying positions. After three consecutive events the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series takes next weekend off before going to the closest track to Kalitta Motorsports, Summit Raceway Park in Norwalk, Ohio.
Doug Kalitta – Driver of the Mac Tools Top Fuel Dragster:
- No. 2 Qualifier (3.750 sec., 329.50 mph)
- E1: Kalitta defeated McMillen - 3.814 sec., 321.88 mph to 9.128 sec., 74.82 mph;
- E2: Kalitta defeated Connolly - 3.901 sec., 302.62 mph to 6.081 sec., 110.59 mph
- E3: Kalitta defeated by Crampton - 3.906 sec., 316.97 mph to 3.859 sec., 319.14 mph
J.R. Todd – Driver of the Kalitta Air Top Fuel Dragster:
- No. 9 Qualifier (3.790 sec., 318.62 mph)
- E1: Todd defeated B. Force - 3.822 sec., 321.58 mph to 3.870 sec., 290.26 mph
- E2: Todd defeated Schumacher - 4.945 sec., 146.07 mph to broke
- E3: Todd defeated by Dixon - 5.364 sec., 131.59 to 3.907 sec., 317.79 mph
Del Worsham – Driver of the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car:
- No. 4 Qualifier (4.116 sec., 309.98 mph)
- E1: Worsham defeated Head - 4.116 sec., 309.98 mph to 4.648 sec., 192.66 mph
- E2: Worsham defeated by T. Pedregon - 4.171 sec., 302.48 mph to 4.180 sec., 299.66 mph
Alexis DeJoria – Driver of the Patrón XO Café Incendio Toyota Camry Funny Car:
- No. 5 Qualifier (4.025 sec., 314.90 mph)
- E1: DeJoria defeated by T. Pedregon - 8.822 sec., 80.36 mph to 4.261 sec., 247.66 mph