Pre-Race Report Event 20: AAA Insurance Midwest Nationals Gateway Motorsports Park Madison, Ill.

Richie Crampton

After runner-up finish in 2017, Kalitta looks for 4th career win at Gateway Motorsports Park

St. Louis Highlights: Three wins (2001, 2003, 2004); Two No.1 qualifiers (2005, 2014)

Last Event Recap (NHRA Nationals): Qualified 8th; Quarterfinalist (Defeated Richie Crampton in the first round, Lost to Clay Millican in the quarterfinals)

2017 NHRA Midwest Nationals Recap: Qualified fourth; Finalist (Defeated Scott Palmer in the first round, Brittany Force in the quarterfinals, Dom Lagana in the semifinals, lost to Steve Torrence in the finals)

Quotable: “We didn’t get the results we had hoped for in Reading, but this Mac Tools team is looking to get back on track in St. Louis. We’ve got a great car, and we definitely need to go some rounds this weekend to move up in the Countdown standings.”

Career Stats: 477 starts; 651 round wins (ninth all-time); 44 wins (Fifth all-time in Top Fuel); 96 finals; 49 no.1 qualifiers (tied 14th all-time)

2018 Season: One Win (Pomona-I); Five finals (Pomona I, Charlotte I, Richmond, Denver, Indianapolis); 28 round wins; sixth in the standings

Noteworthy: Kalitta would hit 50 career No. 1 qualifying positions if he takes the top spot in St. Louis.

Richie Crampton

Crampton hopes to bounce back with strong showing in St. Louis

St. Louis Highlights: One No.1 qualifier (2016)

Last Event Recap (NHRA Nationals): Qualified 9th; First round loss (Lost to Doug Kalitta in the first round)

2017 NHRA Midwest Nationals Recap: Qualified 9th, First round loss (Lost to Dom Lagana in the first round)

Quotable: “I’m hoping for a stronger performance this weekend, because we didn’t perform very well in Reading. Our goal is to qualify better, and get a few round wins for the Craftsman team.”

Career Stats: 98 starts; 86 round wins; Eight wins; 10 finals; Five no.1 qualifiers

2018 Season: One win (Gainesville); 11 round wins; 11th in the standings 

Shawn Langdon

Following difficult start to the Countdown, Langdon hopes for stronger performance at Gateway Motorsports Park

Reading Highlights: One win (2016 – Top Fuel); One No. 1 qualifier (2013 – Top Fuel)

Last Event Recap (NHRA Nationals): Qualified sixth; First round loss (Lost to Robert Hight in the first round)

2017 NHRA Midwest Nationals Recap: Qualified tenth; First round loss (Lost to Steve Torrence in the first round)

Quotable: “We’ve had some bad luck recently, because we have run really well but lost a few races by extremely small margins. It’s a part of drag racing, but we are going to keep trying to improve our car and have some more success going forward.”

Career Stats: 225 starts; 261 round wins; 14 wins; 30 finals; 18 no.1 qualifiers (Funny Car stats: 19 starts; 14 round wins)

2018 Season: 19 starts; 14 round wins; Tenth in the standings

JR Todd 

Coming off back-to-back wins, Todd hopes to extend Funny Car points lead

Last Event Recap (NHRA Nationals): Qualified eighth; Race Winner (Defeated Bob Tasca in the first round, Mike Smith in the quarterfinals, Ron Capps in the semifinals and Tim Wilkerson in the finals)

2017 NHRA Midwest Nationals Recap: Qualified tenth; First round loss (Lost to Courtney Force in the first round)

Quotable: “This DHL/Wix FIlters team has been racing smart, and we are glad to come out of Reading with the points lead. We know we are going to have to win a few more races to win a championship, because the Funny Car category is so tough, so we have to stay focused and keep going rounds.”

Career Stats: 191 starts; 195 round wins; 15 wins; 25 finals; 10 no.1 qualifiers (Funny Car stats: 43 starts; Six wins (2017: Sonoma, Indianapolis, 2018: Las Vegas-I, Houston, Indianapolis, Reading); Six finals (2017: Charlotte-I, Sonoma, Indianapolis, 2018: Las Vegas-I, Houston, Indianapolis, Reading); 46 round wins)

2018 Season: Four wins (Las Vegas-I, Houston, Indianapolis, Reading); 28 round wins; First in the point standings