After nailing the Pro Stock Motorcycle and Pro Mod winners at the most recent event in Gainesville, Tricky Tipster, National Dragster's own wizard of odds has pegged Antron Brown, Matt Hagan, and Greg Anderson as the favorites to hit the jackpot at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway during this weekend's Denso Spark Plugs Four-Wide Nationals.
Hasn’t won this year but historically he does well in Las Vegas including a win at last year’s spring event, and the four-wide format a perfect for a guy who seldom gets rattled.
Winner of last year’s Charlotte four-wide race and a winner this year in Phoenix. He’s also going to have his father and wingman, Billy, in action again this weekend.
The Army team has had a bit of an inconsistent start with a runner-up in Pomona and a first round loss in Gainesville, but the performance is there and nobody loves a new challenge more than The Sarge.
Parts Plus/Great Clips
Having the quickest dragster on the planet is one thing, but the Stringer team is working hard to gain consistency and their efforts have shown. Given the craziness of the four wide format, this could be a perfect place to get a second win.
He’s won twice at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in 2004 and 2015. This year will be quite a bit different but that shouldn’t make the Kalitta team any less of a threat.
He’d be the first to tell you that the Gainesville win wasn’t a masterpiece, but it was a great morale and confidence booster. The DHL team appears to have turned the corner.
Papa John’s Pizza/Dodge
Qualified no worse than sixth at any of the first three races but has only two round wins to show for it. This car can run big numbers almost anywhere so really, they just need a bit of good luck to get back to a final round.
It’s been more than a month since her devastating accident in Pomona so the Monster team should be getting back to normal. She gave Tony Schumacher a heck of a run in Gainesville but came up a little short. She is also a former four-wide champ.
Mopar Express Lane Dodge
Let’s see. He’s been the points leader since the start of the season. He won the most recent Las Vegas race last November and he won the four-wide race in Charlotte in 2013. That should be enough to make him a small favorite in a stacked field.
Some nitro racers still aren’t sold on the four-wide format. Ron Capps isn’t one of them. The 2016 world champ sees a four-wide win as a badge of honor thanks to a format where driving skill can often be more important than crew chief savvy.
Infinite Hero Dodge
Ran the table in Gainesville by qualifying No. 1 and winning the race which doesn’t happen often in today’s Funny Car class. He’s also been a best in qualifying with three starts from the No. 3 spot or better.
Auto Club Chevy
Not expecting to see any lingering effects from the big boomer in Gainesville. Also have to like the fact that he’s been able to successfully negotiate the minefield that is four-wide racing on two occasions.
Global Electric Technology Toyota
Most people expected him to make a quick transition to Funny Car racing and so far, he’s been right on schedule with a pair of semifinals in the first three races. His bracket racing skill is a big bonus when facing three other opponents.
Advance Auto Parts Chevy
Coming off a big win in Phoenix, she smoked the tires in the second round in Gainesville but that does not change the fact that this is one of the quickest cars in the class and it can also be one of the most consistent.
Tommy Johnson Jr.
He’s bagged a pair of wins in Las Vegas during his career including last year’s spring event. So far in 2017, he’s put together four round wins including a final round showing in Phoenix, which has similar conditions to Las Vegas.
The short story here is that he needs to stop qualifying in the middle of the field. While there are no easy draws in Funny Car, qualifying No. 8 usually means a tough quarterfinal race against the low qualifier. Another hundredth or two would go a long way here.
Summit Racing Camaro
As good as this car/driver combo has been, it’s a sin that he hasn’t been past the quarterfinals yet this year. Expect that to change this weekend. In fact, a double-up with the K&N Horsepower Challenge isn’t out of the question.
Butner Auto Camaro
With a win and a runner-up in the first three races of the season, it’s hard to imagine a better way to start a title defense. He also went to the final the last time he raced in Las Vegas, which was a key to his championship run.
Harlow Sammons Camaro
The important addition of clutch specialist Adam Hornberger cannot be understated. This car has already made some monster runs this year and one gets the feeling that they are just getting started. At this point, he’s the early favorite to break the KB stranglehold.
Summit Racing Camaro
He occasionally degrades his own driving but we can’t overlook the fact that he was the winner of the Charlotte four-wide race in 2016 and he’s also got a pair of Wally trophies from Las Vegas races.
Skillman Auto Group Camaro
One of the few pros to win at least one round in each of the first three events. He’s got a great car and he’s savvy enough to figure out the nuances of side-by-side-by-side-by-side racing. Don’t be surprised if he pulls of a win here or the K&N Horsepower Challenge.
Mountain View Racing Camaro
The winner of the fan vote for the last spot in the K&N Horsepower Challenge, he’ll once again have a shot to double-up., a feat that he accomplished when the specialty race was held in Norwalk. This is also a rejuvenated team that has a lot to prove.
Gray Manufacturing Technologies Camaro
From a driving standpoint, his Gainesville win was a masterpiece. However, the car is still a tick off the pace of the leaders. It flies in testing, but he’s qualified either No. 10 or No. 11 at all three races this season. That needs to change.
The four-wide format rewards the driver who doesn’t get rattled and has a quick clutch foot. That pretty much describes the two-time champ perfectly. She won’t need to have the best car in the field in order to do some damage.