Aaron Stanfield won for the second straight event in Pro Stock and again denied Greg Anderson the chance to tie class icon Warren Johnson’s 97-win total with his victory at the Lucas Oil NHRA Winternationals presented by ProtectTheHarvest.com. Stanfield, who denied Anderson career win No. 97 not long ago in Norwalk, did it again in Pomona on a 6.65 to 6.66 final-round count.
"Our job is definitely to keep him away from [the 97th win] as long as possible," said Stanfield. "I would imagine eventually one day he's gonna get it but we want to make it as hard as possible. The KB [Racing]/Elite rival rivalry it's great. They're both very competitive teams and it's just it's cool to cool to be in the middle of it and have a chance to win, so we're I'm very grateful for the opportunities I've been given.
"It was a tricky race, a tricky race track today. The crew chiefs had their work cut out. And right before that final round they really made a lot of changes. And, obviously, it seemed to work out really well."
Stanfield’s win in the Janac Brothers Camaro was his fourth in Pro Stock and third this season after earlier scores in Epping and last weekend in Sonoma. Stanfield also owns 11 wins in NHRA’s Sportsman classes.
Stanfield defeated Erica Enders in a so-close semifinal match, leaving on her by just .006-second (.048 to .054) and outrunning her 6.684 to 6.866 for a true-win margin of .008, the exact same margin that Enders beat Aaron Strong the round before.
In the two rounds before the semifinals, Stanfield, the No. 7 qualifier, defeated Kenny Delco with a 6.63 and Matt Hartford with a 6.67.
Anderson, whose first career win came in Bristol in 2001, has been trying to get his 97th win since the Atlanta event in May and had been stopped in two final rounds since, losing to Stanfield in Norwalk and nemesis Enders in Denver.
Anderson’s pursuit of history began from the No. 1 qualifying spot with a first-round bye run for the 15-car field, then followed with a second-round victory against Chris McGaha, 6.64 to 6.70. In the semifinals, he faced the first of two young guns and overcame Kyle Koretsky’s two-hundredths holeshot to light the win light with another 6.64 to the 6.70 registered by “Kid Kaos.”