April 28, 2019 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) teammates Matt Hagan and Leah Pritchett powered their Pennzoil Dodge//SRT Mopar machines to semifinal finishes in Funny Car and Top Fuel, respectively, at the NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMAX Dragway near Charlotte on Sunday, April 28.

Starting from the No. 6 position, Pennzoil Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car driver Hagan finished second out of four drivers in the opening round of the unique “four-wide” racing format to advance deeper in eliminations on the strength of a 3.953 second elapsed time (ET) at 325.14 mph, his quickest pass of the weekend. In the next four-driver pairing, Hagan posted the quickest pass to continue on to the final quad.

Hagan, the 2013 winner at Charlotte, matched up with Force, Robert Hight and Shawn Langdon in the final foursome of the day. Chasing his second win of the season, the two-time Funny Car World Champion smoked the tires early and was forced to settle for a semifinals finish, with Langdon taking the event win. Hagan remains second in the Funny Car point standings.

Pritchett was hoping to end the day at zMAX Dragway with her first Four-Wide Wally trophy, but a loss of traction in the final round dashed her hopes at her first triumph of the year.
 
Pritchett and her Pennzoil Mopar Dodge team posted the third-best run of the final qualifying session to secure a spot in the top-half of the field. In round one, Pritchett led her quad with a solid 3.775 E.T. In the second elimination session, a blower belt caused the seven-time Top Fuel winner to slow to a 3.947 but it was enough to earn a spot in the final elimination quad where she eventually fell to reigning Top Fuel world champ Steve Torrence and Clay Millican, recording a semifinal finish.
 
“Fast” Jack Beckman looked to be on a bee-line to the winner’s circle in the early going on Sunday at zMAX Dragway in his Mopar-powered Infinite Hero Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car. After banking five total bonus points en route to the No. 2 qualifying spot, DSR driver Beckman was quickest in his first foursome grouping in eliminations, clocking a 3.925 ET at 324.83 mph to advance.

Unfortunately, the 2012 Funny Car World Champion’s run ended in round two, thanks to a dropped cylinder that forced Beckman to pedal his car to a losing 7.194 ET finish. Beckman's performance moved him up in the Funny Car standings, where he now sits tied for fourth.

Tommy Johnson Jr. entered the weekend seeking his first zMAX Dragway win and qualified the Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat No. 4. He posted a 3.978 E.T., the quickest of the first round, to score the victory over his competition. In round two, Johnson found himself stacked against three former world champions. His machine was on a good pass before hazing the tires just past halftrack, allowing his lane four opponent to pull ahead and nab the win, ending Johnson’s day.
 
As the No. 10 qualifier, NAPA Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car driver Ron Capps faced tough competition in his round-one elimination quad, which included teammate Jack Beckman, Tim Wilkerson, and Dave Richards. Capps stood on the gas and his machine lost traction shortly after, slowing to a 5.172-second pass which wasn’t enough to set off the win light.

In NHRA Factory Stock Showdown competition, defending class champion Pritchett, once again pulling double duty in her Top Fuel and Factory Stock Mopar Dodge Challenger Drag Pak machines at Charlotte, qualified in the ninth position. Pritchett left first in the opening round with a stellar .011 reaction time in her Drag Pak and maintained the lead at half track before opponent Bill Skillman was able to get past and beat her 7.945/173.21 run to nudge out Pritchett by three feet for the win.

Mopar Dodge//SRT NHRA Sportsman Spotlight
In Stock Eliminator, Kelly Mack from Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada, drove his FS/C 2009 Mopar Dodge Challenger Drag Pak to a round three finish at the NHRA Four-Wide Nationals. Motivating Mack’s Drag Pak to low 10-second ETs is a Mopar 6.1-Liter HEMIÒ engine. Despite running consistent all weekend, Mack bowed out on a redlight foul in the third round of eliminations after leaving the starting line a bit too early. For advancing the furthest in competition, Kelly earned Dodge Top Finisher honors in Stock Eliminator.

Dave Thomas from West Chester, Pennsylvania, drove his FSS/F 2011 Mopar Dodge Challenger Drag Pak to a second round finish in Super Stock at Charlotte. Powered by a Viper V10 engine, Thomas qualified 11th out of 52 Super Stock entries with a run of 9.33 seconds and was looking strong during eliminations. Unfortunately, a slightly tardy reaction time against his opponent ended Thomas’ quest to advance to the next round. Thomas collected the Dodge Top Finisher award in Super Stock.

The Dodge Top Finisher program, now in its third year, awards $500 to Stock Eliminator and Super Stock drivers who advance the furthest behind the wheel of a Mopar-powered Dodge, Chrysler, or Plymouth race car at all 24 NHRA national events.

Dodge//SRT Mopar NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series: Notes & Quotes

Matt Hagan, Pennzoil/Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 6 Qualifier – 3.959 ET)

Rd.1: (.070-second reaction time, 3.953 seconds at 325.14 mph) beat No. 14 Cruz Pedregon  (.038/4.671/184.02), No. 11 Jonnie Lindberg (.104/4.786/181.25)
Rd.2: (.133/3.997/316.30) beat No. 7 Tim Wilkerson  (.080/4.062/290.07), No. 2 Jack Beckman (.090/7.194/99.31)
Rd.3: (.060/5.252/172.89) lost to No. 5 Shawn Langdon  (.069/4.125/305.08), No. 1 Robert Hight (.054/4.159/242.89)

“We were just pushing a little bit too hard up there, really trying to run a number. You can Monday morning quarterback it all day long – it didn’t take that big a number to make it happen, I think a 4.12 won it – but everybody went up there with that same mentality to push hard, and that’s why everybody smoked the tires.
 
“The thing about it is, we’ve got a great race car. We’re going into Atlanta, we’re coming off of two finals right now, and I just really feel like this team is clicking and working really well. The parts and pieces are working and the guys are putting it (the car) together great. For Sandvik/Mopar/Pennzoil, It’s going to happen soon. Just keep doing what we’re doing. The car is responding to the decisions (crew chief) Dickie Venables is making good or bad. If it’s working, don’t change it.”
 
Leah Pritchett, Pennzoil/Mopar Dodge Top Fuel Dragster
(No. 5 Qualifier – 3.750 ET)

Rd.1: (.064-second reaction time, 3.775 seconds at 327.03 mph) beat No. 12 Richie Crampton  (.054/4.851/153.72), No. 13 Lex Joon (.115/6.231/111.37)
Rd.2: (.092/3.947/271.30 mph) beat No. 4 Doug Kalitta  (.079/4.736/163.65), No. 1 Mike Salinas (.076/5.423/149.81)
Rd.3: (.099/4.435/246.30) lost to No. 6 Steve Torrence  (.061/3.778/323.19), No. 9 Clay Millican (.019/4.035/310.48)

“The bad news is that we didn’t get a win out of the final. The good news is, we’re done with four-wide racing for the year. I don’t think the four-wide particularly had too much to do with the result of our day. We raced in a lane we only previously had one run in since we had last pick. The highlight is first round we had the race car and driver come together and we were able to sweep past the competition and into the second round. It’s progress. Four-Wide throws a lot of curve balls as you as a driver and a crew chief.
 
“T-minus five days we’ll be in Atlanta and we’re definitely looking forward to that. It’ll be warm so we’re going to take everything we learned here and apply it there. I can personally say I’m frustrated. I’ve tried a lot of things, physically and mentally, to be where the competition is at with reaction times, and frustrated because it’s not working. I will continue to work towards a solution and I can’t wait to show out in Atlanta.” 
 
Jack Beckman, Infinite Hero Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 2 Qualifier – 3.891  ET) 

Rd.1: (.092-second reaction time, 3.925 seconds at 324.83 mph) beat No. 15 Dave Richards  (.106/5.044/175.32), No. 10 Ron Capps (.084/5.172/152.95)
Rd.2: (.090/7.194/99.31) lost to No. 3 John Force  (.053/4.046/320.81), No. 6 Matt Hagan (.133/3.997/316.30)

“It seems our theme this year has been that we’re not dominant in qualifying, and we find a race day package that works. Then we come here, and now we’re stellar in qualifying, and the second best car first round on race day. And then as soon as I stepped on the throttle that round (the second round), it put a hole out. That’s going to happen when we get to these tracks. We have to figure out how to tune around it, because once we get into the heat of the summer months, we are going to be faced with it a lot.
 
“I’ve said all along we’ve got a great race car, but we need to prove that. At some point in the next couple of races, we need to push this thing into the winner’s circle. The good thing about having a race next weekend is that we only have to wait five days to dust ourselves off and do this again.”
 
Tommy Johnson Jr., Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 4 Qualifier – 3.938 ET)

Rd.1: (.087-second reaction time, 3.978 seconds at 321.35 mph) beat No. 13 Jeff Diehl  (.184/4.492/236.09), No. 12 Terry Haddock (.255/11.602/69.75)
Rd.2: (.075/4.363/213.60) lost to No. 1 Robert Hight  (.065/3.977/322.58), No. 5 Shawn Langdon (.059/4.311/248.93)

“Losing in the second round is not what we wanted, but we learned some things and it was still a productive day. We had a good race car but the track was really tricky. The quad we were in, only one car made a full run, the rest of us had issues. We’ll learn from this and take it to Atlanta. It’s only going to get hotter and if we can learn from this for the summertime, that’s great.” 
 
Ron Capps, NAPA Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car
(No. 10 Qualifier – 4.025 ET)

Rd.1: (.084-second reaction time, 5.172 seconds at 152.95 mph) lost to No. 2 Jack Beckman  (.092/3.925/324.83), No. 7 Tim Wilkerson (.076/3.954/317.27)

“The big story for us was dealing with an obstacle that you’re never really ready for during a race, and that is having to change cars during qualifying on Saturday. We’ll figure out what’s wrong with the car we were running and have a front-half done. To be thrown a curve ball like that, and I brag about the NAPA Know How with Tobler, and we had everything ready to go to make the switch and to go up there and make a run like that to qualify is awesome. This team isn’t far from the winner’s circle and I have the utmost confidence. The way this journey has been this year, that win will be very rewarding.”

Up Next: Arby’s NHRA Southern Nationals
Next up for the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series is a trip to Atlanta Dragway for the Arby’s NHRA Southern Nationals, scheduled for May 3-5 in Commerce, Georgia. One of the longest-running events on the NHRA circuit, Leah Pritchett raced her Mopar Dodge Top Fuel machine to the event win last year, and will attempt to duplicate the feat this season.
 
2019 NHRA Championship — Point Standings After Round 6 of 24 (Season Wins in Parentheses)

NHRA Funny Car
1.  Robert Hight (3) – 582
2.  Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat (1) – 440
3.  John Force – 417
4t.  J.R. Todd (1) – 394
4t.  Jack Beckman, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat – 394
6.  Tommy Johnson, Jr., Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat – 371

7.  Tim Wilkerson – 339
8.  Shawn Langdon (1) - 338
9.  Ron Capps, Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat – 318
10.  Bob Tasca III - 282
 
NHRA Top Fuel
1.  Steve Torrence (1) – 460
2. Doug Kalitta (1) – 426
3.  Clay Millican – 394
4.  Mike Salinas (1) – 384
5.  Brittany Force (1) – 382
6.  Leah Pritchett, Mopar HEMI – 378
7.  Antron Brown – 317
8.  Terry McMillen – 309
9.  Richie Crampton (1) – 296
10. Billy Torrence (1) – 265
 
About Dodge
Dodge//SRT offers a complete lineup of performance vehicles that stand out in their own segments. Dodge is America’s mainstream performance brand and SRT is positioned as the ultimate performance halo of the Dodge brand, together creating a complete and balanced performance brand with one vision and one voice.
 
For more than 100 years, the Dodge brand has carried on the spirit of brothers John and Horace Dodge, who founded the brand in 1914. Their influence continues today. New for 2019, the Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye is possessed by the Demon. Its 797-horsepower supercharged HEMI® high-output engine makes it the most powerful, quickest and fastest muscle car reaching 0-60 miles per hour (mph) in 3.4 seconds and the fastest GT production car with a ¼-mile elapsed time (ET) of 10.8 seconds at 131 mph. It also reaches a new top speed of 203 mph. Joining the Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye is the 2019 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat with its more powerful 717-horsepower engine, the Challenger R/T Scat Pack Widebody, which features fender flares from the SRT Hellcat Widebody and adds 3.5 inches of width to Scat Pack’s footprint, as well as and the new Challenger R/T Scat Pack 1320. Infused with exclusive drag strip technology from the iconic Dodge Challenger SRT Demon, the Challenger R/T Scat Pack 1320 is a drag-oriented, street-legal muscle car and a blank canvas for the serious grassroots drag racer.  The 2019 Dodge Durango SRT, America’s fastest, most powerful and most capable three-row SUV with a best-in-class tow rating of 8,700 lbs. fills out the brands’ performance lineup. These visceral performance models join a 2019 brand lineup that includes the Durango, Grand Caravan, Journey, Charger and Challenger — a showroom that offers performance at every price point.
 
About Mopar
Mopar (a simple contraction of the words MOtor and PARts) is the service, parts and customer-care brand for FCA vehicles around the globe. Born in 1937 as the name of a line of antifreeze products, the Mopar brand has evolved over more than 80 years to represent both complete care and authentic performance for owners and enthusiasts worldwide.

Mopar made its mark in the 1960s during the muscle-car era, with Mopar Performance Parts to enhance speed and handling for both road and racing use, and expanded to include technical service and customer support. Today, the Mopar brand’s global reach distributes more than 500,000 parts and accessories in over 150 markets around the world. With more than 50 parts distribution centers and 25 customer contact centers globally, Mopar integrates service, parts and customer-care operations in order to enhance customer and dealer support worldwide.

Mopar is the source for genuine parts and accessories for all FCA US LLC vehicle brands. Mopar parts are engineered together with the same teams that create factory-authorized specifications for FCA vehicles, offering a direct connection that no other aftermarket parts company can provide. Complete information on the Mopar brand is available at www.mopar.com.