The biggest moments seem to bring out the best in Erica Enders and the two-time defending Pro Stock world champ is gearing up for what she hopes is another big finish. Enders won at the most recent race in St. Louis, pulling to within 17 points of longtime rival Greg Anderson, which means there’s plenty on the line for the Texas native heading to this weekend’s Texas NHRA FallNationals at Texas Motorplex.
Both Enders and Anderson are racing for their fifth NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series world title and it’s expected to be a battle for the ages to finish off the 2021 season. Anderson has enjoyed a stellar season and has been the points leader for the first 14 races this year, but Enders has always been special in the Countdown to the Championship and appears locked in once again. She’s advanced to three finals in the past four events in her Melling Performance/Elite Motorsports Camaro, won two of them and is eager to add a Dallas victory to her championship journey.
“This means the world to me and I’m thankful for all of this, and I’m going to continue to have fun doing it,” Enders said. “It’s a true challenge to drive one of these cars and I love it, and I love those pressure-packed situations. We knew it could come down to the two of us. I think it’s great for the class we have so much fresh blood out here and it speaks volumes for how much passion we all have for the class, but it’s going to be a dogfight. I’m up for the challenge and I know Greg is up for the challenge as well.”
Enders has put together four victories this season, but nothing has come easy in a category that has seen an impressive influx of young talent to go with veterans like Anderson, Enders and Hartford. Rookie Dallas Glenn has won twice, Kyle Koretsky won recently in Charlotte and is 97 points behind Anderson, and Enders’ teammate, Aaron Stanfield, also has a trio of victories this year. But with Enders’ victory in St. Louis, her and Anderson are separated less than a round in what should be a thrilling duel to the finish. Enders and her team are used to those moments and she aims to revel in it yet again.
“It’s going to take a lot of work to compete for this fifth championship, but I think I have the best guys in the world to try to be able to do that,” said Enders, who has 33 career victories. “This is a dream come true for me and we’re going to do our best to continue to have a great season. We’ve put ourselves within striking distance of Greg and we just have to go to work.”