Dominant Performance by Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat as Hagan Wins NHRA Midwest Nationals and Powers to Funny Car Championship Lead

September 26, 2021

, Madison, Illinois

Defending National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) Funny Car universe champion Matt Hagan powered his Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) New Holland Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat from a No. 1 qualifier position to a winner’s spin during a Midwest Nationals nearby St. Louis in widespread conform to take over a lead in a “Countdown to a Championship”. 

Hagan kicked off a third of 7 NHRA playoff array events by pushing his HEMI-powered appurtenance to a provisional No. 2 symbol during World Wide Technology Raceway in Friday dusk subordinate to find himself shutting in on DSR teammate and points personality Ron Capps on a provisional timing sheets as good as a Funny Car championship standings. From there Hagan never looked behind and laid down a quickest laps in both Saturday subordinate sessions with a final pass of 3.868 seconds during 333.25 mph to secure his third No. 1 qualifier position of a year, a 43rd overall, and collect 8 of 9 probable reward points to put him usually one pen behind Capps streamer into Sunday’s rejecting rounds. 

Hagan had an opening spin bye run and a quarterfinal win opposite J.R. Todd to pierce on to an all-Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat semifinal opposite No. 5 seed Cruz Pedregon. Both launched and battled side-by side a whole length of a lane with Hagan (0.086/3.922/328.30) branch on a win lights over Pedregon (0.083/3.954/323.58) to allege to his fifth final spin showdown of a season. Facing off opposite No. 6 seed Bob Tasca, Hagan got out of a embankment initial and done another plain underling four-second run (3.933) during 333.49 mph to acquire his initial Wally prize from a St. Louis venue. 

The win was Hagan’s third of a season, a 39th of his career, and a fourth for his organisation interjection to a feat warranted in a playoff opener in Reading, Pennsylvania with surrogate motorist Tommy Johnson Jr., who slipped into a Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat chair as a unchanging motorist recovered from COVID-19. With dual playoff wins in 3 events, Hagan altered into a tip symbol in a Funny Car championship conflict with a 59-point lead over his associate DSR stablemate Capps.

Capps’ weekend began by pushing his NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat to a provisional No. 1 symbol on Friday and a second best run in final subordinate on Saturday to supplement 5 reward points to his points total and acquire a No. 2 symbol on a rejecting ladder, a 13th time this deteriorate he has competent in a top-five position. He powered his hard-charging HEMI-powered appurtenance to an considerable 3.854-second elapsed time run during 333-mph in a opening spin to improved No. 15 seed Chris King whose racecar faltered right off a start. 

Capps modernized to a quarterfinal match-up opposite associate championship contender John Force, who has been frequently entertainment his racecar low into a starting line beams to confuse his opponents. While wakeful and prepared for Force’s tactics, a maestro DSR motorist had an uncharacteristic start that authorised his foe to take a early lead. Capps gave follow with a 3.929-second pass yet unfortunately wasn’t means to kick Force’s slower 3.970-second lap. Despite a beforehand exit, Capps stays second in a Funny Car championship battle.

Fellow Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car motorist Cruz Pedregon followed adult final weekend’s runner-up opening during a NHRA Carolina Nationals with a fifth place start for a Midwest Nationals by recording a 3.896 sec./ 328.62 mph pass, a fourth quickest in a final session, to symbol a fifth uninterrupted eventuality he has competent in a top-five. Pedregon degraded No. 12 seed Jim Campbell and No. 4 qualifier Blake Alexander in a initial dual spin rejecting rounds to allege to a semifinals and lineup his Snap-on Tools “Socket to Breast Cancer” appurtenance subsequent contingent spin and eventuality leader Hagan. 

After shutting out a unchanging deteriorate eighth in a Funny Car standings, a Cruz Pedregon Racing team’s plain alleviation by 3 uninterrupted playoff events moves a group adult into fourth place with 5 races remaining.

In Top Fuel action, DSR commander Leah Pruett warranted a No. 4 seeded position by wheeling her Okuma Mopar Dodge//SRT dragster to a third-quickest pass in a final subordinate eventuality to array her opposite No. 13 seed Clay Millican in a opening round. Pruett was initial off a line with a 3.701-second pass during 326.16 mph to acquire a opening spin win over Millican’s 3.883 sec./253.80 mph pass, and followed that adult with a quarterfinal win over Billy Torrence who faltered early in a run. She afterwards modernized to a semifinals to face No. 1 qualifier Mike Salinas, opposite whom Pruett’s hopes of stability on to a finals went adult in tire fume right during a hit. Pruett and her Mopar Dodge//SRT dragster come divided from this weekend’s eventuality sitting sixth in a conflict for a Top Fuel crown.

After 4 uninterrupted weekends of racing a NHRA will take a weekend off before returning to movement Oct. 7-10 for a Texas NHRA FallNationals, a fourth of 7 “Countdown to a Championship” playoff events, during Texas Motorplex nearby Dallas, Texas.
The Constant Aviation Factory Stock Showdown (FSS) returned to foe this weekend for a penultimate eventuality of a eight-race array and saw Mark Pawuk lead a approach for a contingent of DSR-prepared 2021 Dodge Challenger Mopar Drag Paks by subordinate No. 2 on a eliminations ladder with a career-best run during 7.772-second during 179.14 mph brazen of teammates Pruett (No. 5) and David Davies II (No. 7).

Pawuk softened his newest epoch Mopar Drag Pak’s opening serve as he ran down No. 15 seed Lee Hartman with another career-best speed during his 7.816 second pass during 182.50 mph for a opening spin win. He afterwards used a 0.008-second greeting time opposite David Davies II in a quarterfinals on his approach to a 7.829 sec./178.80 mph pass to strech a ribbon brazen of his teammate’s plain 7.839 sec./178.02 mph run. In a semifinals Pawuk accessible a ideal 0.000-second launch opposite No. 3 qualifier Leonard Lottig, and even with a plain 7.871 sec./177.88 mph pass, he wasn’t means to deflect off his opponent’s 7.809 sec./176.01 mph winning run. 

Davies had his best subordinate bid this deteriorate aboard a D H Davies Racing Dodge Challenger Mopar Drag Pak to start eliminations from a seventh place on a ladder with his 7.829 seconds during 177.79 mph effort. He rode that movement into Sunday’s foe where he used a holeshot to acquire his initial spin win of a year over Joseph Welch by 6 thousandths-of-a second with a career-best 7.825-second run during 175.73 mph. That set adult a all-Dodge quarterfinal compare adult with teammate and contingent spin leader Pawuk. 

Pruett competent her DSR Mopar Drag Pak fifth for eliminations with a plain 7.821 second subordinate run during 177.51 mph that set adult a initial spin showdown opposite John Cerbone. She posted a 0.091-second start and a 7.982 sec./ 169.04 mph run opposite Cerbone, yet it wasn’t utterly adequate to kick her opponent’s 0.046-second launch and 7.883 sec/177.72 mph winning effort. The final Factory Stock Showdown of a deteriorate will take place during a Dodge//SRT NHRA Las Vegas Nationals Presented by Pennzoil during a finish of October.
Matt Hagan, DSR New Holland Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat
(No. 1 Qualifier – 3.868 seconds during 333.25 mph)
Round 1: (0.249-second greeting time, 3.929 seconds during 327.43 mph) on a Bye run
Round 2: (0.065/3.894/332.18) defeats No. 9 J.R. Todd (0.078/4.571/182.21)
Round 3: (0.086/3.922/328.30) defeats No. 3 Cruz Pedregon (0.083/3.954/323.58)
Round 4: (0.047/3.933/333.49) defeats No. 6 Bob Tasca (0.059/3.967/329.99)
“When you’ve got a multiple and a package like we do, it’s tough to beat. The approach (Crew Chief) Dickie (Venables) has got this automobile running, as prolonged as we do my job, it’s going to spin a win light on. You try not to concentration too many on a points since it changes so quick from day to day, and foe to foe out here. You can be on tip of a points one day and afterwards we go out first-round a subsequent day, so we take it in stride. Over a years, a championships that we won, I’ve unequivocally usually attempted to concentration on what we can control, and everybody else has to do their job, and I’m advantageous in that I’m in a conditions where we truly can count on my team.
“We usually have 4 some-more races left after this, so a vigour is there, yet I’ve been there before, we know a hunt, and we know that a automobile is going to be a unequivocally critical contender. we overtly unequivocally consider we can win this championship with a approach Dickie’s got this thing running. (Ron) Capps is going to be tough, (John) Force is going to be tough, all of them, really. These organisation chiefs are throwing down, it’s like a slugfest out there.”

Ron Capps, DSR NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat
(No. 2 Qualifier – 3.876 seconds during 333.82 mph)
Round 1: (0.085-second greeting time, 3.854 seconds during 333.41) defeats No. 15 Chris King (0.098/6.016/123.07)
Round 2: (0.121/3.929/326.56) detriment to No. 10 John Force (0.039/3.970/328.70)
“[Force’s low stage] unequivocally threw me off. Add me to a list. We saw it occur with Robert Hight progressing and he’s as good as it gets out here as a driver. You know (John) Force is going to do it, it’s a possibility. When a light went off on a final second, you’re so focused on your ambers, we do see it out of a dilemma of your eye, and many of a time we run him I’m shouting in a automobile since he tries to do that to me. I’ve been pushing for 27 years, we don’t consider I’ve ever had a light (start) that bad in eliminations, generally with a vigour like we have right now. we let my guys down, and it hurts bad right now, yet we have a good prohibited rod, that’s a good thing. I’m improved than that. We don’t have a oppulance of creation another path and perplexing to make adult for it like NASCAR or IndyCar guys when they have something go wrong. This is it; it happens, and we have to live with it and I’ve got dual weeks to consider about it.”
Cruz Pedregon, Cruz Pedregon Racing Snap-on® Tools Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat
(No. 5 Qualifier – 3.896 seconds during 328.62 mph)
Round 1: (0.092-second greeting time, 3.913 seconds during 327.03 mph) defeats No. 12 Jim Campbell (0.100/4.005/313.22)
Round 2: (0.077/4.127/243.06) defeats No. 4 Blake Alexander (0.107/8.867/73.85)
Round 3: (0.083/3.954/323.58) detriment to No. 1 Matt Hagan (0.086/3.922/328.30)
“Overall it was a good eventuality for us. We indeed altered adult to fourth in a points with 4 races remaining in a 2021 NHRA season. We competent fifth with a 3.89 during 328 mph run and mislaid a tighten semifinal foe to contingent eventuality leader Matt Hagan. It was a good run for us, with a 3.92, to a 3.95. we didn’t see him until a finish line there, so he got past us there right during a end. It was unequivocally a good eventuality for us and another unchanging race. We’re pleased. Obviously we would always like to win these races, yet anytime we can go to a semis, generally in these countdown races where a foe is usually so tough, where everybody’s competent so tighten tip to bottom.  We’re usually unequivocally pleased. we appreciate (Crew Chief) JC (John Collins) and (assistant Crew Chief) Rip (Reynolds) and a whole group for giving me another good car. We would have favourite to have gotten that foe win opposite Matt (Hagan), yet hats off to my Dodge teammate who went on to win a race. We’ll pierce on and get some indispensable rest here before we conduct to Dallas. We’ll make some exam runs on Wednesday there for a Fan Fest. There’s a small some-more inducement to run good there with a promotions run by a Billy Meyer lane there in Ennis (Texas). we adore a Ennis track. It’s overwhelming and I’ve won a lot of large races there by a years. we remember my initial year (1992 championship year) was opposite John Force where we both smoked a tires and it was a classical foe that a lot of fans still speak about to this day. We’re going to go full speed brazen and try to stay in a hunt. We’re unequivocally not too distant out of a lead and it’s still a applicable unfolding there for us to get in a points. We usually have to keep during it and keep it consistent.”
Leah Pruett, DSR Okuma Mopar Dodge//SRT Dragster  
(No. 4 Qualifier – 3.714 seconds during 326.00 mph)
Round 1:  (0.064-second greeting time, 3.701 seconds during 326.16 mph) defeats No. 13 Clay Millican (0.081/3.883/253.80)
Round 2: (0.045/3.769/316.01) defeats No. 5 Billy Torrence (0.095/6.575/122.59)
Round 3: (0.090/20.077/No Speed) detriment to No. 1 Mike Salinas (0.038/3.713/328.06)
“Reaching a semifinals is always a plus, and some of those brazen of us went out early so that helps garland adult a points a bit. We had some large match-ups today. The initial spin opposite Clay (Millican), we never know what they’re going to chuck out there, that’s a quick car. Our Okuma (Mopar Dodge//SRT) appurtenance laid down a plain 3.70 pass. That second spin was large and that was a fun foe opposite Billy (Torrence) and he’s right brazen of us in a points and that’s an event to be a hulk torpedo and pass them. Getting that win from burnout to audience was great. We had to barter blowers before a semis and that altered a tune-up a small bit. we wish we could put my ride on what happened and since it smoked a tires during a hit, yet we don’t have any information from that run. It shows a purchase was charged during entertainment and afterwards nothing. Disappointed, slightly. Heartbroken, positively not. Something about this weekend and this group usually resonates, and it’s unequivocally tough to kick a group who never gives up. That’s accurately who we are. We’ll keep going with this movement in Dallas.”
Leah Pruett, 2021 Dodge Challenger Mopar Drag Pak
(No. 5 Qualifier – 7.821 seconds during 177.51 mph)
Round 1: (0.091-second greeting time, 7.982 seconds during 169.04 mph) detriment to No. 12 John Cerbone (0.046/7.883/177.72)
“Talk about a haunt and we’ve nickname this beauty ‘phantom’ and we had haunt issues with a Mopar Drag Pak. We mislaid boost on a subordinate run and substituted superchargers and compressors and afterwards for E1 we put a new adjuster on it and it mislaid boost progressing in a run. There’s something plaguing us with a unequivocally good using Dodge. We do devise to exam before (Las) Vegas as we wish to finish strong. Our team, as a whole, is unequivocally clever going rounds with Mark (Pawuk) to a semis and Dave (Davies) removing his initial spin win. I’m carrying a good time driving. It does harm not going rounds, yet this group has been by a lot, yet we have shown what it needs to pull brazen and make a right calls.”
Mark Pawuk, 2021 Empaco Equipment Mopar Drag Pak
(No. 2 Qualifier – 7.772 seconds. during 179.14 mph)
Round 1: (0.123-second greeting time, 7.816 seconds during 182.50 mph) defeats No. 15 Lee Hartman (0.036/7.987/173.83)
Round 2: (0.008/7.829/178.80) defeats No. 7 David Davies II (0.092/7.839/178.02)
Round 3: (0.000/7.871/177.88) detriment to No. 3 Leonard Lottig (0.055/7.809/176.01)
“We’re unequivocally happy with a opening of a foe automobile this weekend during St. Louis. We ran unequivocally good all weekend with this Empaco Dodge Challenger Mopar Drag Pak during DSR. The motorist did his job, unfortunately, there was a malfunction in a semis after we cut a triple-o (.000) light when a automobile shifted from initial to third and that slowed us down and we mislaid by 7 thousandths (of-a-second). That was unequivocally disappointing. we suspicion this could be my weekend to get behind into a NHRA winner’s circle. We have a quick prohibited rod. Everybody on a group did a good job. We’ll keep fighting. We need to get this shifter thing figured out since it happened twice this weekend. We’ll get it bound and I’m looking brazen to finishing out a deteriorate during (Las) Vegas on a high.”
David Davies II, D H Davies Racing Dodge Challenger Mopar Drag Pak
(No. 7 Qualifier – 7.829 seconds during 177.79 mph)
Round 1: (0.041-second greeting time, 7.982 seconds during 175.73 mph) defeats No. 10 Joe Welch (0.074/7.818/183.10 mph)
Round 2: (0.098/7.839/178.02) detriment to No. 2 Mark Pawuk (0.008/7.829/178.80)
“We’re unequivocally vehement about a weekend. St. Louis is a good lane and I’ve always had good fitness here. Once again, even yet we didn’t foe to a win, a cars are usually about dialed in and if we’re going to lose, since not to a teammate so one of us goes through. Mark (Pawuk) did a good pursuit on a tree and a cessation changes we done to a automobile got us what we indispensable this weekend. The 60-foot times were illusory and we are using 178, 179 mph. The Bilstein cessation complement is unequivocally operative good on these Drag Paks and we’re prepared for a final foe during (Las) Vegas.”

NHRA Championship Points Standings:
Following a NHRA Midwest Nationals during World Wide Technology Raceway
FUNNY CAR (season wins in parentheses)
1. Matt Hagan (Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat) – 2,354 (3/1-TJ Johnson Jr.)
2. Ron Capps (Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat) – 2,295 (1)
3. John Force – 2,282 (3)
4. Cruz Pedregon (Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat) – 2,255 (1)
5. J.R. Todd – 2,239 (1)
6. Bob Tasca III – 2,234 (2)
7. Robert Hight – 2,194 (2)
7. Tim Wilkerson– 2,194 (1)
9. Alexis DeJoria – 2,163
10. Blake Alexander– 2,120
TOP FUEL (season wins in parentheses)
1. Steve Torrance – 2,373 (9)
2. Brittany Force – 2,337 (1)
3. Billy Torrence – 2,247 (2)
4. Mike Salinas – 2,239
5. Justin Ashley – 2,235 (1)
6. Leah Pruett (Mopar Dodge//SRT) – 2,222 (1)
7. Antron Brown – 2,188 (1)
8. Shawn Langdon – 2,164
9. Clay Millican – 2,157
10. Doug Kalitta – 2,096
1. Aaron Stanfield – 651
2. David Barton – 430
3. John Cerbone – 409
4. Jesse Alexandra – 403
5. David Janac – 367
6. Leah Pruett (2021 Dodge Challenger Mopar Drag Pak) – 366
7. Stephen Bell – 339
8. Mark Pawuk (2021 Dodge Challenger Mopar Drag Pak) – 304
9. Leonard Lottig– 283
10. Doug Hamp – 281
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