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Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil Saturday gallery

14 Sep 2019
Jacob Sundstrom, NHRA National Dragster Associate Editor
Feature
Richie Crampton
Check out the best shots from the second day of racing from the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil as captured by NHRA National Dragster photographers Marc Gewertz and Bob Szelag.
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"Race with your car, not with your mouth" - Mike Kloeber prepared for Countdown fight

Mike Kloeber and Clay Millican start the NHRA Countdown to the Championship in sixth place and he wants his Parts Plus Top Fuel dragster to do the talking.
14 Sep 2019
Jacob Sundstrom, NHRA National Dragster Associate Editor
Feature
Clay Millican
Mike Kloeber took over tuning duties for Clay Millican ahead of the 2019 season and helped bring the Parts Plus Top Fuel team to the No. 6 seed at the start of the NHRA Countdown to the Championship. That is four spots below where the Straightline…
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Karen Stoffer: "I want to take a shot at the championship."

Thanks to her partnership with the White Alligator team, Karen Stoffer is enjoying her best season in years, and she believes she's got a legit shot at the Mello Yello Pro Stock Motorcycle championship.
14 Sep 2019
Kevin McKenna, NHRA National Dragster Senior Editor
Feature
Karen Stoffer
Even though Reading, Pa., is more than 2,600-miles from her home in Minden, Nev., Karen Stoffer almost considers Maple Grove Raceway to be her home track and with good reason the track has been the home of some of her most memorable moments,…
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Jeg Coughlin Jr. preparing to chip away at Pro Stock points lead

With six NHRA championships to his credit, including five in Pro Stock, there isn't much that Jeg Coughlin Jr. hasn't seen or done during his long career.
14 Sep 2019
Kevin McKenna, NHRA National Dragster Senior Editor
Feature
Jeg Coughlin Jr.
Jeg Coughlin Jr. won his first Pro Stock race more than two decades ago, and his career resum is Hall of Fame worthy with six championships and 81 national event wins for starters. Given his vast experience, it’s hard to throw Coughlin a pitch that…
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Hear what the teams said following Friday qualifying at the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil:

"It's ladies' night and I'm about to do this" -Angelle Sampey
14 Sep 2019
Jacob Sundstrom, NHRA National Dragster Associate Editor
Feature
Angelle Sampey
Track records were broken after a pair of weather delays in Reading, Pennsylvania. Hear what the teams had to say about the first day of qualifying at the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil.  Don Schumacher Racing…
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Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil Friday gallery

The NHRA Countdown to the Championship blasted off in Reading and NHRA National Dragster photographers Marc Gewertz and Bob Szelag captured the action.
13 Sep 2019
NHRA National Dragster staff
Feature
Reading
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Ron Capps draws first blood in NHRA Countdown to the Championship

13 Sep 2019
Jacob Sundstrom, NHRA National Dragster Associate Editor
Feature
Ron Capps
Ron Capps earned the first three bonus points of the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil. Naturally, crew chief Rahn Tobler chalked it up to luck.  "You know, I'd say that that was probably about half luck," said Tobler…
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'I was gonna light him up' - Antron Brown just as hungry entering Countdown

Antron Brown enters the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil in third place, just 30 points behind Steve Torrence as he chases his fourth Top Fuel world championship. The New Jersey native knows how difficult earning that trophy will be, but that doesn't make the ever-optimistic Brown any less confident.
13 Sep 2019
Jacob Sundstrom, NHRA National Dragster Associate Editor
Feature
Antron Brown
Antron Brown enters the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil in third place, just 30 points behind Steve Torrence as he chases his fourth Top Fuel world championship. The New Jersey native knows how difficult earning that trophy…
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What the teams said ahead of the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil:

“I think there’s a lot going on mentally for a driver going into the Countdown. There’s really no easy way to go about it, but I do know that being in that number one spot, it’s yours to lose. That’s a tough spot to be in." --Shawn Langdon
13 Sep 2019
Jacob Sundstrom, NHRA National Dragster Associate Editor
Feature
Steve Torrence / John Force
John Force Racing John Force Racing doubled-up for the first time in its history in 2017 as Brittany Force and Robert Hight both won championships. 2018 was not so kind to JFR as Hight stumbled at the season-ending Auto Club Finals and Force was…
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WATCH: Re-live the 2018 Dodge NHRA Nationals

Watch the start of Steve Torrence's historic NHRA Countdown to the Championship sweep in highlights from the 2018 Dodge NHRA Nationals.
13 Sep 2019
Jacob Sundstrom, NHRA National Dragster Associate Editor
Feature
Mike Salinas
Watch the start of Steve Torrence's historic NHRA Countdown to the Championship sweep in highlights from the 2018 Dodge NHRA Nationals. Courtney Force and Clay Millican began on pole in Reading at the Countdown opener while Tanner Gray and Matt…
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Points leaders Andrew Hines and Bo Butner will try to keep pushing the pace

Andrew Hines and Bo Butner are in similar situations heading into the Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship, as both have been the points leader in their respective classes for the entire season. Now they just have to keep the mojo going for the next six events.
12 Sep 2019
Posted by NHRA.com staff
Feature
Bo Butner
Andrew Hines and Bo Butner are in similar situations heading into the Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship, as both have been the points leader in their respective classes for the entire NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series regular season. With…
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What’s ahead for Tommy Johnson Jr. as he heads into the Countdown battle?

After arguably the most consistent regular season in his Funny Car career, Tommy Johnson Jr. hopes it translates into more clutch performances in the Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship and possibly his first career world championship.
12 Sep 2019
Posted by NHRA.com staff
Feature
Tommy Johnson Jr.
Tommy Johnson Jr. has had no trouble finishing his NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season on a high note. After arguably the most consistent regular season in his Funny Car career, the veteran standout hopes it translates into more clutch…
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Leah Pritchett has a lot of reasons to want to win this weekend, and history is one of them

Since 2013, the Top Fuel winner of the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil at Maple Grove Raceway has gone on to win the season championship, and Mopar driver Leah Pritchett would like to continue that trend.
11 Sep 2019
Posted by NHRA.com staff
Feature
Leah Pritchett
Considering it’s happened the past six years, it’s a streak worth noting. It’s also one that has Leah Pritchett’s attention heading into this weekend’s 35th annual Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil at Maple Grove Raceway. Since…
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NHRA Countdown to the Championship Preview: Who can stop the Harley-Davidson machine in Pro Stock Motorcycle?

Andrew Hines enters the countdown as the No. 1 seed with teammate Eddie Krawiec close behind. Can anyone offer a challenge in Pro Stock Motorcycle?
09 Sep 2019
Kevin McKenna, NHRA National Dragster Senior Editor
Feature
Harley-Davidson
he Countdown to the Championship begins at the next event, the Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals Presented By Pennzoil in Reading, and Harley-Davidson teammates Andrew Hines and Eddie Krawiec have locked down the top two spots. With a combined nine…
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NHRA Countdown to the Championship Preview: Can Bo Butner win his second Pro Stock championship in three years?

Bo Butner un-retired his way to the No. 1 seed in the Pro Stock playoffs. Can he turn that into another world title?
09 Sep 2019
Kevin McKenna, NHRA National Dragster Senior Editor
Feature
Bo Butner
On the dawn of the first race in the NHRA Countdown to the Championship, this much is certain: We will have a new NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Pro Stock champion in 2019. With reigning champ Tanner Gray off racing in the K&N Pro East…
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NHRA Countdown to the Championship Preview: Is Robert Hight still the favorite in Funny Car?

Robert Hight holds the No. 1 seed in the NHRA Countdown to the Championship, but he will face a stacked field of competitors in the Funny Car category entering the Mopar NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil.
09 Sep 2019
Jacob Sundstrom, NHRA National Dragster Associate Editor
Feature
Robert Hight
Robert Hight looked like the heir apparent for the Funny Car championship throughout the first half of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing season. He may still be by virtue of locking up the No. 1 seed, holding the most 2019 Wallys, and driving the…
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NHRA Countdown to the Championship Preview: Can Steve Torrence repeat as Top Fuel champion?

We answer the biggest questions surrounding the Top Fuel category entering the NHRA Countdown to the Championship, which kicks off Friday at the Mopar NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil.
07 Sep 2019
Jacob Sundstrom, NHRA National Dragster Associate Editor
Feature
Steve Torrence
The NHRA Countdown to the Championship turns 12 in 2019, and Steve Torrence enters the playoffs as the No. 1 seed for the third straight season. The Texan does not need to repeat his history-making 24-round winning streak to win his second title,…
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Steve Torrence eyeing more Countdown records with top seed, huge lead

Heading into final eliminations for Top Fuel at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, one thing that won’t change is that Steve Torrence will enter the six-race Countdown to the Championship playoffs as the top seed.
02 Sep 2019
Phil Burgess, NHRA National Dragster Editor
Feature
Steve Torrence
Heading into final eliminations for Top Fuel at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, one thing that won’t change is that Steve Torrence will enter the six-race Countdown to the Championship playoffs as the top seed. Torrence will finish the…
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Record Indy Funny Car field has some connections to past record fields

Five rounds of Funny Car qualifying at the 2019 Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals helped create a record-breaking field of 16 qualifiers with Justin Schriefer’s 4.005 sitting on the bump spot. Qualifiers John Force, Ron Capps, and Tommy Johnson Jr. all have connections to previous record fields.
02 Sep 2019
Phil Burgess, NHRA National Dragster Editor
Feature
Justin Schriefer
Five rounds of Funny Car qualifying at the 2019 Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals helped create a record-breaking field of 16 qualifiers with Justin Schriefer’s 4.005 sitting on the record bump spot. The old record was 4.029 set at the 2016 Auto…
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Nitro Funny Car rookie Ray Martin ready to take the sport's biggest stage

Ray Martin has NHRA licenses in 12 classes, but the latest ticket to ride for the Alaska-based driver is for a nitro Funny Car. He qualified the Worsham family’s Toyota for a shot at winning the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals.
01 Sep 2019
Phil Burgess, NHRA National Dragster Editor
Feature
Ray Martin
Going fast is nothing new to Ray Martin. He has NHRA licenses in 12 classes, including Pro Mod, Top Alcohol Dragster, Comp, Super Stock, Super Comp, Nostalgia Funny Car and a few others in addition to his usual ride in Top Alcohol Funny Car, but the…
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Tommy Johnson Jr. fighting gremlins, the weather in pursuit of Funny Car field

As the rain continued to fall Sunday morning, Tommy Johnson Jr., driver of the Make-A-Wish Funny Car, had a wish of his own: a chance to still make the Funny Car field at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals.
01 Sep 2019
Phil Burgess, NHRA National Dragster Editor
Feature
Tommy Johnson Jr.
As the rain continued to fall Sunday morning, Tommy Johnson Jr., driver of the Make-A-Wish Funny Car, had a wish of his own: a chance to still make the Funny Car field at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals. Johnson, who this weekend is…
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Veteran Jim Dunn looking for a little more Indy magic to make quick Funny Car field

Jim Dunn knows that magic happens at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals. The veteran car owner has won the race before, but faces a stiff challenge to put his driver, Jim Campbell, into the field of one of the sport's quickest-ever fields.
01 Sep 2019
Phil Burgess, NHRA National Dragster Editor
Feature
Jim Dunn Racing
Jim Dunn knows that magic happens at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals. The veteran car owner, who first came to Indy in 1964 with a Chevy-powered fuel dragster, has witnessed how incredible things can happen at “the Big Go” in his more…
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Quality not quantity has been the recipe for success for T.J. Zizzo so far in 2019

T.J. Zizzo and the Rust-oleum Top Fuel team don’t run a lot of races, preferring to spend their humble budget on quality outings instead of quantity, and they're looking to continue their impressive 2019 season this weekend at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals.
31 Aug 2019
Phil Burgess, NHRA National Dragster Editor
Feature
T.J. Zizzo
T.J. Zizzo and the Rust-oleum Top Fuel team don’t run a lot of races -– you’ll always see them at their hometown event in Joliet, Ill., and, of course, at Indy, and maybe one or two others –- preferring to spend their humble budget on quality…
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Kenny Delco battling hard for final Countdown spot in Pro Stock

Kenny Delco has overcome a lot of adversity this season, now he's on the verge of his first top ten finish in Pro Stock since 1990.
31 Aug 2019
Kevin McKenna, NHRA National Dragster Senior Editor
Feature
delco
Kenny Delco didn’t compete in the Four-Wide Nationals in Las Vegas and he suffered through a nasty crash at the Dodge Mile-High Nationals in Denver, yet through all the adversity, he finds himself on the verge of clinching a spot in the Countdown to…
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Indy 'Fanboy Jack' Beckman gives way to 'Racer Jack' as hunt for win continues

You don’t have to have won Indy to be a fan of the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, but it certainly helps. Just ask Jack Beckman.
31 Aug 2019
Phil Burgess, NHRA National Dragster Editor
Feature
Jack Beckman
You don’t have to have won Indy to be a fan of the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, but it certainly helps. Just ask Jack Beckman. The driver of the Infinite Hero Dodge Charger Hellcat Funny Car has a deep love for the history of our sport…
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Tii Tharpe, Doug Vancil will decide Mickey Thompson Tires Top Fuel Harley title at Indy

The Mickey Thompson Tires Top Fuel Harley season championship will be decided this weekend at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals in a two-rider showdown between points leader and defending series champ Tii Tharpe and second-ranked Doug Vancil.
30 Aug 2019
Phil Burgess, NHRA National Dragster Editor
Feature
Top Fuel Harley
The Mickey Thompson Tires Top Fuel Harley season championship will be decided this weekend at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals in a two-rider showdown between points leader and defending series champ Tii Tharpe and second-ranked Doug Vancil…
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Phil Burkart Jr., Paul Smith honoring their shared Castronovo legacy at Indy

Funny Car racer Phil Burkart Jr. and Paul Smith are saluting former Funny Car owner Fred Castronovo on Smith’s Rock Batteries Funny Car at this weekend's Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, a nod to their shared history with the Castronovo family.
30 Aug 2019
Phil Burgess, NHRA National Dragster Editor
Feature
Phil Burkart
As a car-obsessed teenager growing up in Utica. N.Y. in the early 1980s, Phil Burkart Jr. always gravitated to the town’s hot-rodding hotpot, the Custom Body Enterprises shop of the Castronovo brothers, who fielded a Funny Car, first driven by…
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Angelle Sampey embracing challenges at Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals aboard Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson

The 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season has been a challenging one for three-time Pro Stock Motorcycle world champ Angelle Sampey, but all of that could be wiped away with an impressive showing on drag racing’s biggest stage.
29 Aug 2019
Posted by NHRA.com staff
Feature
Angelle Sampey
The 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season has been a challenging one for three-time Pro Stock Motorcycle world champ Angelle Sampey, but all of that could be wiped away with an impressive showing on drag racing’s biggest stage, this…
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J.R. Todd has a chance to make history at Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals

J.R. Todd has back-to-back wins at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals and can become the first Funny Car driver in NHRA history to win the prestigious race three straight years.
29 Aug 2019
Posted by NHRA.com staff
Feature
J.R. Todd
For someone who grew up watching drag racing’s biggest race, winning the prestigious Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals was a career-making moment for J.R. Todd. But the Funny Car standout didn’t stop there after winning in 2017. He followed it up…
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Erica Enders hopes to have another memorable Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals

Erica Enders is chasing another memorable Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals in her Chevrolet Camaro.
29 Aug 2019
Posted by NHRA.com staff
Feature
Erica Enders
Erica Enders’ favorite Indy memory happened in 2015 and it’s a moment she will never forget. It marked her first win at the prestigious Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, coming in the midst of her impressive back-to-back championship run in Pro…
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