The Gatornationals in September? For all the crazy and unpredictable things that have happened during the 2020 season, that surely tops the list. Then again, not much should surprise NHRA fans anymore. The reality is that we’ve got five events remaining before professional season champions are crowned which means it’s time to accumulate points.
Three weeks ago at the Denso Spark Plugs NHRA U.S. Nationals, Shawn Langdon, Jack Beckman, Erica Enders, and Scotty Pollacheck did just that win convincing wins in Top Fuel, Funny Car, Pro Stock, and Pro Stock Motorcycle. Not surprisingly, Beckman, Enders, and Pollacheck left Indy as the points leaders in their respective categories while Langdon remains in title contention as the No. 6 ranked driver in Top Fuel.
With just 20 elimination rounds remaining this season and no Countdown to the Championship reset, each round is crucial, especially during a shortened season that will feature 11 professional races. Doug Kalitta currently leads Indy runner-up Leah Pruett by just 50 points while Beckman’s advantage over DSR teammate Matt Hagan is just 35 markers with Tommy Johnson Jr. lurking in third place, 57-points back. In Pro Stock, Enders took over the lead from her Elite teammate, Jeg Coughlin Jr., but her edge is just seven-points while Jason Line is in third place by just 11 points. The race for the Pro Stock Motorcycle title is even closer with the top six riders separated by just 47-points.
The Gainesville schedule also features the E3 Spark Plugs Pro Mod series and the SAM Tech.edu Factory Stock Showdown, as well as the continuation of the Mickey Thompson Top Fuel Harley series. The Pro Mod class will feature reigning class champ and recent Indy winner Steve Jackson, and former champs Mike Janis, and Khalid alBalooshi. The Factory Stock Showdown field will be led by current points leader Aaron Stanfield who is also racing in Pro Stock, and Leah Pruett, who will also be racing in Top Fuel.
You can catch the action all weekend on Fox Sports 1 and NHRA.tv.
Whether you’re in Pomona, Indianapolis, or anywhere else around the world, you can follow NHRA on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to get a closer look at the action.
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Saturday, September 26, FS1 will televise qualifying coverage from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. (ET).
Sunday, September 27, FS1 will televise final eliminations coverage from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. (ET)