Exciting Quarterfinal Battle for Hagan at Dodge Power Brokers NHRA U.S. Nationals

  • Tony Stewart Racing (TSR) driver Matt Hagan took his No. 7 qualified Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat to a quarterfinal appearance at the prestigious 68th annual Dodge Power Brokers Hot Rod Association’s (NHRA) U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park
  • Hagan closes out the regular season with three wins, three runner-up finishes, five No. 1 qualifier awards, and sits third in the Funny Car standings behind Robert Hight and Ron Capps as the points reset for the upcoming NHRA “Countdown to the Championship” six-event playoff series
  • TSR Top Fuel pilot Leah Pruett and her Dodge Power Brokers dragster kicked off race day at the “Big Go” from the tenth spot but saw her run cut short by a dropped cylinder in the opening round
  • Pruett sits seventh in the Top Fuel points standings heading into the playoffs having earned her team’s first category win at the Dodge Power Brokers Mile-High Nationals in Denver and a No. 1 qualifier award in Sonoma 
  • Funny Car driver Cruz Pedregon qualified ninth aboard his Snap-on Tools Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat but was unable to advance past the first round after losing cylinders on his first lap and will start the playoffs seeded eighth
September 5, 2022 , Indianapolis, Indiana -  After finishing runner-up in an exciting National Hot Rod Association’s (NHRA) All-Star Callout specialty race final during qualifying at the 68th annual Dodge Power Brokers U.S. Nationals, Tony Stewart Racing’s (TSR) Matt Hagan found himself in another tremendous battle in the quarterfinals of the world’s biggest and best known drag race at Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park.
Hagan, whose quicker 3.900-second elapsed time run in Sunday’s Callout race-within-a race was just 0.004-seconds short of beating Ron Capps’ holeshot effort, had another tremendous drag race in the elimination rounds of the “Big Go” against points leader Robert Hight.
Prior to facing Hight, the Dodge Power Brokers Charger SRT Hellcat set the tone by recording the top speed of the event (at that point) with Hagan’s 3.881-second winning run at 334.07 mph against No. 10 seed Alexis DeJoria in the opening round. Once staged for the quarterfinal showdown, Hagan hit the throttle just 0.004-seconds behind Hight as the two adversaries battled side-by-side the entire length of the legendary dragstrip. While Hagan took his HEMI-powered ride for his quickest run of the weekend at 3.867 sec./ 334.65 mph it was 0.006-seconds short of turning on the win lights ahead of Hight’s 3.861 sec./ 331.77 mph lap.
The quarterfinal finish brought Hagan’s regular season to a close and, with three wins, three runner-up finishes, and five No. 1 qualifier awards, puts the TSR driver third in Funny Car standings (behind Hight and Dodge Power Brokers U.S. Nationals winner Ron Capps) as the points reset for the upcoming NHRA “Countdown to the Championship” six-event playoff series.
TSR pilot Leah Pruett qualified tenth on the Top Fuel eliminations ladder and staged her Dodge Power Brokers dragster in the right lane next to seventh-seed Billy Torrence for the opening round. Pruett had the quicker launch but lost a cylinder early in the run, ending her hopes of advancing further. Pruett, who earned the TSR team’s first Top Fuel Wally at the Dodge Power Brokers NHRA Mile-High Nationals in Denver in July, closes out the regular season in seventh  place.
Three-time Funny Car winner at the “Big Go”, Cruz Pedregon qualified in the No. 9 spot aboard his Snap-on Tools Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat and had No. 8 seed J.R. Todd as his first round opponent. Both competitors had a good light, but when the Cruz Pedregon Racing machine began to drop cylinders, the driver/owner opted to abandon the run. Pedregon will head to the playoffs seeded eighth in the category.
The NHRA “Countdown to the Championship” begins with the first of six playoff events, the Pep Boys NHRA Nationals at Maple Grove Raceway in Pennsylvania, Sept. 15-18. FS1 will air qualifying highlights on Friday, Sept. 16, at 7 p.m. ET and Sunday, Sept 18, at 11 a.m. ET, while FOX will have race day coverage beginning at 2 p.m. ET.

Leah Pruett, Dodge Power Brokers Top Fuel Dragster  
(No. 10 Qualifier – 3.725 seconds at 332.51 mph)

Round 1: (0.068-second reaction time, 5.129-second elapsed time run at 146.56 mph) loss to No.7 Billy Torrence (0.081/3.740/324.20)

“Indy always brings the unexpected. We said that at the beginning of the week. Our team is not known for dropping cylinders at the hit. Roll the dice and about every 50 laps or so, it might give you one of those and that’s exactly what happened in the first round. As a sensitive driver, after our Q5 run, I felt something wasn’t right. I gave the car a pedal and you can’t out-recover a cylinder. It’s disappointing for sure because we had high hopes and high expectations and a high-performing Dodge Power Brokers dragster that showed glimpses of victory during qualifying. To go out early in the weekend is definitely below our standards. This is the end of the regular season, so it’s better to have it happen now. We have plans of potentially testing before the Countdown. We’re going to figure out as much as we can and then hit it from there to solve these little glitches. It’s not the most ideal weekend we’ve ever had, but we have the power of our Power Brokers behind us and that’s going to give us momentum into the Countdown.”

Matt Hagan, Dodge Power Brokers Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car  
(No. 7 Qualifier – 3.892 seconds at 333.41 mph)

Round 1: (0.067-second reaction time, 3.881 seconds at 334.07 mph) defeats No. 10 Alexis DeJoria (-0.149/10.086/78.68)
Round 2: (0.060/3.867/334.65) loss to No. 2 Robert Hight (0.056/3.861/331.77)

“What a wild, crazy weekend but what a special weekend because it is the U.S. Nationals. You don't know how many years you get to race here and be a part of the Big Go and to have the pinnacle of our season right here before the Countdown, it's just awesome. Our team really came together and put a great race car underneath me. We just came up short in two really close drag races this weekend that were within thousandths-of-a-second apart. You're talking about inches on the finish line. It's tough to be on the backside of a good drag race but what's positive about it is that our Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat is running good and it's responding to the changes that the crew chief is making.

We really rallied around each other and that really showed this weekend. We're putting all those rounds together and (Crew Chief) Dickie (Venables) is really stepping up and throwing down against (Robert Hight’s crew chief Jimmy) Prock. I feel we’re moving in the right direction and we’re going into this Countdown really strong. (Ron) Capps is going to be tough. There's a bunch of cars out here that are tough. We’ve just got to keep digging, working hard, and I’ve got to hit the practice tree more and as a team we have to come together and make that happen if we're going to win championships.”

“I think we're all chasing Robert (Hight) right now. He's running good. He’s won six races. They have a very consistent car in the heat and in the cool, but we’ve got (Crew Chief) Dickie Venables who is one of the best out there and I wouldn't trade him for anybody. Right now we've just got to get into throwdown mode and a Countdown mode. We’ve got to win two or three of those six (playoff) races to really run for a championship and win this thing. I know we can do that. 

We had a great start to the season winning three races and a bunch of No. 1 qualifiers, but then it kind of fell off a little bit. These things come in cycles and peaks and valleys, and I feel like it's our time to get back into the cycle. We've got to go out there and just bring everything that we can to the table. I’ve got to dig deep on the tree and these guys got to dig deep as far as putting a good tune up in it. I think if we do that collectively, we'll be really hard to beat.”

Cruz Pedregon, Pedregon Racing Snap-on® Tools Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat
(No. 9 Qualifier –   seconds at   mph)

Round 1: (0.043-second reaction time, 7.086 second elapsed time run at 101.45 mph) loss to No. 8 J.R. Todd (0.036/3.856/330.88)

“I don't think we ever had three dropped cylinders in a row at the step of the throttle, so there's definitely something mechanical going on. We're going to really take everything apart and probably try going to go test somewhere and get it figured out before Reading. Our Dodge Funny Car just ran so easy on Friday night with that 3.90 and it was right where we wanted and then we just struggled from that point on. 

We're disappointed but at the same time we know we have a championship caliber car here and the team’s upbeat. We're just going to figure it out and go to Reading prepared. The great part is that our second season starts now. Throughout my career, I have always finished strong, and I believe we are shaping up to have that happen again this year. My dad taught me this; ‘Things happen for a reason.’ Sometimes you learn more from tough weekends than ones when you are at the top of your game.”
Following the Dodge Power Brokers U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park

FUNNY CAR (season wins in parentheses)
1.  Robert Hight 1570 (6)
2.  Ron Capps: 1291 (3)
3.  Matt Hagan (Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat): 1244 (3)
4.  Bob Tasca III: 1164 (3) 
5.  John Force: 1149 (1)
6.  J.R. Todd: 871
7.  Alexis DeJoria: 824
8. Cruz Pedregon (Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat): 801
9.  Tim Wilkerson: 730
10. Blake Alexander: 582
TOP FUEL (season wins in parentheses)
1.  Brittany Force: 1356 (4)
2.  Mike Salinas: 1200 (4) 
3.  Justin Ashley: 1195 (2) 
4.  Steve Torrence: 1169 (1)
5.  Josh Hart: 882
6.  Antron Brown 839 (2)
7.  Leah Pruett (Dodge Power Brokers): 810 (1)
8.  Shawn Langdon: 809
9. Doug Kalitta: 801 
10. Tony Schumacher: 703 (1)
@DodgeMoparMotorsports on Instagram
The @DodgeMoparMotorsports Instagram channel continues to share content capturing Dodge//SRT Mopar drivers on the track. Fans can see action from the NHRA Mission Drag Racing Series and NHRA Sportsman grassroots racers, competing in classes such as Factory Stock Showdown, Stock and Super Stock, as well as additional motorsports series.

For more than 100 years, the Dodge brand has carried on the spirit of brothers John and Horace Dodge. Their influence continues today as Dodge shifts into high gear with a lineup that delivers unrivaled performance in each of the segments in which the brand competes while moving forward to a future that includes electrified muscle in the form of the next-generation, all-new Dodge Charger.

The next-generation Dodge Charger electrifies a legend, with the Charger retaining its title as the world’s quickest and most powerful muscle car led by the all-new, all-electric 2024 Dodge Charger Daytona Scat Pack. The all-new Dodge Charger will also offer performance choices via multi-energy powertrain options, including the 550-horsepower Dodge Charger SIXPACK H.O., powered by the 3.0L Twin Turbo Hurricane High Output engine.

Dodge also keeps its foot on the gas as a pure performance brand with the 710-horsepower Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat, the most powerful SUV ever, and best-in-class standard performance in the compact utility vehicle segment with the Dodge Hornet.

Fans can follow all the NHRA action this season at DodgeGarage, the one-stop portal for Dodge//SRT and Mopar drag-racing news, including daily updates and access to an online racing HQ, news, events, galleries, available downloads and merchandise.

Dodge is part of the portfolio of brands offered by leading global automaker and mobility provider Stellantis (NYSE: STLA).
Mopar is the global name for Stellantis genuine parts and authentic accessories.

A simple combination of the words MOtor and PARts, Mopar offers exceptional service, parts and customer-care. Born in 1937 as the name of a line of antifreeze products, Mopar has evolved over more than 85 years to represent both complete vehicle care and authentic performance for owners and enthusiasts worldwide.

Mopar made its mark in the 1960s during the muscle-car era with performance parts to enhance speed and handling for both on-road and racing use. Later, Mopar expanded to include technical service and customer support, and today integrates service, parts and customer-care operations in order to enhance customer and dealer support worldwide.

Complete information on Mopar is available at www.mopar.com and the newly redesigned Mopar blog at www.blog.mopar.com

Follow Dodge, Mopar and Stellantis news and video on:

Company blog: blog.stellantisnorthamerica.com
Media website: media.stellantisnorthamerica.com
Dodge brand: www.dodge.com
DodgeGarage: www.dodgegarage.com
Mopar brand: www.mopar.com
Mopar blog: blog.mopar.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/dodge and www.facebook.com/mopar
Instagram: @DodgeMoparMotorsports, @DodgeOfficial and @OfficialMopar
Twitter: @Dodge, @OfficialMopar and @StellantisNA
YouTube: www.youtube.com/dodge, www.youtube.com/c/mopar and www.youtube.com/StellantisNA
Download Video Embed