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For Alexis DeJoria success is all about trusting the process

Alexis DeJoria has struggled at times this season, but she and crew chief Del Worsham believe the Bandero Premium Tequila team is on the verge of a big breakthrough.
18 Jun 2022
Kevin McKenna, NHRA National Dragster Senior Editor
Feature
Alexis DeJoria

Patience is indeed a virtue, but Alexis DeJoria admits that sometimes it’s a quality she lacks. Now three years into her return to the sport and the formation of the DC Motorsports team, DeJoria is anxious to start winning again. She won the Bristol event a year ago, but hasn’t been able to sustain that success into the 2022 season.

So far this year, DeJoria has a pedestrian 5-8 record in elimination rounds and her best finish is a semifinal at the Las Vegas Four Wide race. There have been bright spots, specifically a round one win over J.R. Todd in Phoenix and a No. 3 qualifying berth in Richmond, but everyone involved agrees there is much progress left to be made.

Success in nitro racing begins with qualifying and for most of this season, DeJoria has been seeded in the middle of the pack. She’s been either No. 9 or No. 10 at half the races and that means no lane choice in round one and a potentially tough round two match against one of the top qualifiers. Crew chief Worsham acknowledges that once the team’s qualifying results improve, their race day fortunes should quickly follow suit.

“We are definitely on our way,” said DeJoria. “Between Del and Nicky [Boninfante] I have so much faith in these guys that we can win from any spot. I won here last year from No. 1 and I’ve also won from the 14th spot. We get discouraged from time to time. We have our ups and downs but it’s all coming together. We’re good.”

“We’ve been to a final already and I think it’s is all coming together,” Worsham added. “There are a lot of variables but we’re headed to the time of year where it won’t be as big a deal.”

DeJoria and Worsham are particularly excited about the new Toyota Supra body that they debuted earlier this season. The body has shown impressive numbers in the wind tunnel and the duo believes it will ultimately be dominant on the racetrack.

“It’s just a matter of time before it clicks and  the planets align but we know this body will outperform any other body out here,” said DeJoria.

So, when will those planets align for the Bandero Toyota team? As far as DeJoria is concerned, this weekend’s Bristol race would be as good a place as any for their fortunes to change.

“Coming back here with Del, it’s like family,” DeJoria said. “This is where I feel my most comfortable. We’ve had incredible luck here. I won last year and it was amazing. We qualified No. 1 and won the race and that’s never happened before. We’d love to come back here and finish what we started.

“This team has been intact since we started in 2020 and that’s huge because there is typically a lot of turnover. We’re all on the same level and we all want to win, and everyone works so well together.”

 “Yeah,” said Worsham. “We all cry and celebrate together.”

DeJoria quickly interrupted.

“Wait, there’s no crying in drag racing,” she said.