NORWALK, OH – June 21, 2017 – (Motor Sports Newswire) – Racing at Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park during the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals, it would be almost impossible for Pro Stock standout Jason Line to miss his sponsor’s presence at this weekend’s race.
While it puts extra attention on Line and his Summit Racing Equipment Chevrolet Camaro, that extra pressure often seems to bring out the best in the three-time world champion at his sponsor’s races. The defending event winner of the race in Norwalk, Line hopes for another boost this weekend as the Pro Stock veteran looks to recreate the magic that led to a win at the 2017 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season opener.
“We’ve always enjoyed the Summit Racing events,” said Line, a two-time winner in Norwalk. “They’re a lot of fun, and we look forward to spending time with all the folks from Summit. The Bader family knows how to put on a heck of a show, and it’s always a great weekend coming to his racetrack. This is Summit Racing’s home race, and we have a good time here, but the bottom line is that we want to put a Summit Racing Chevy Camaro in the winner’s circle. That’s the best way to show them our gratitude, and you can bet we’ll be doing our best to make that happen.”
Shawn Langdon (Top Fuel), Ron Capps (Funny Car) and Eddie Krawiec (Pro Stock Motorcycle) were also last year’s winners of the event that will be televised on FOX Sports 1, including final eliminations coverage starting at 6:00 p.m. (ET) on Sunday, June 25. It is the 12th of 24 events in 2017 and finishes off a stretch of four straight races. The first three haven’t gone Line’s way, as he has just one round win in that span, dropping to fifth in points.
That includes back-to-back first-round losses, a far cry from a season ago when Line dominated to the tune of eight victories and a world title. The 2017 season started strong with a victory in Pomona, but Line has been searching for answers lately. The good news is the track record he and his team have put together over the years indicates things are about to change.
“We knew coming into this year that we weren’t going to have the advantage that we had last year,” Line said. “But that just creates a bigger challenge, and the Summit Racing team has never been one to shy away from a challenge. We have room for improvement, but like I’ve said before, I wouldn’t want to trade places with anyone. We’ve got a capable group at the track and back home at the KB Racing shop, and we have cars that can win. I haven’t had a whole lot of luck lately, (but) hopefully that changes this weekend. I couldn’t think of a better place for that to happen.”
Line’s longtime teammate Greg Anderson won two weekends ago and is second in points, and their KB Racing teammate Bo Butner has two wins and is the points leader. That shows Line there’s plenty going right on the team, even as they’re challenged by the likes of two-time 2017 winner Tanner Gray, Erica Enders, Chris McGaha, Vincent Nobile and Jeg Coughlin Jr. But Line is focused on his own progress and he expects to see it this weekend.
“I think we’re going in the right direction and we’ve seen small improvements every weekend,” said Line, who has 46 career wins. “We just have to stay on course and keep making improvements as the season progresses. It would be great to win for Summit Racing Equipment this weekend. There aren’t a lot of things that can compare to winning for your sponsor at their main event.”
Langdon will shoot for his first Top Fuel win in 2017, facing off against back-to-back world champ Antron Brown, points leader Steve Torrence and Bristol winner Clay Millican.
Defending event winner Capps has been dominant since winning his first Funny Car world championship. He has five victories in 2017, including last weekend in Bristol.
Krawiec leads the Pro Stock Motorcycle points after a season-opening win, but L.E. Tonglet has two wins in 2017. Other stars include Andrew Hines and reigning world champ Jerry Savoie.
The NHRA J&A Service Pro Mod Drag Racing Series makes its eighth of 12 stops in the 2017 season in Norwalk. The event also features thrilling competition in the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series. After Nitro qualifying, fans can watch the spectacular Douthit Motorsports eye lighting Black Pearl Jet Funny Car vs. Pro Jet Motorsports Al Z’s Hot Blade Jet Dragster. Jet cars are thrust driven propelled by jet engines with exciting pre-run flame shows.
As always, fans will have the opportunity to interact with their favorite drivers as they’re granted an exclusive pit pass to the most powerful and sensory-filled motorsports attraction on the planet. This unique opportunity in motorsports gives fans direct access to the teams, allowing them to see firsthand the highly-skilled mechanics service their hot rods between rounds, and get autographs from their favorite NHRA drivers.
Fans also will want to visit NHRA’s popular Nitro Alley and Manufacturers Midway, where sponsors and race vendors create a carnival atmosphere, with interactive displays, simulated competitions, merchandise, food and fun for the entire family.
Mello Yello Drag Racing Series qualifying will feature two rounds at 5:15 and 7:45 p.m. on Friday, June 23 and the final two rounds of qualifying on Saturday, June 24, at 12:45 and 3:15 p.m. Final eliminations are scheduled for 11 a.m. on Sunday, June 25.
To purchase general-admission or reserved seats, call Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park at (419) 668-5555. Tickets also are available online at www.summitmotorsportspark.com. Kids 12 and under are free in general admission areas with a paid adult. For more information about the NHRA visit www.NHRA.com.
About National Hot Rod Association
Headquartered in Glendora, Calif., NHRA is the primary sanctioning body for the sport of drag racing in the United States. NHRA presents 24 national events featuring the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series and NHRA J&A Service Pro Mod Drag Racing Series. NHRA provides competition opportunities for drivers of all levels in the NHRA Summit Racing Series and the NHRA Drags: Street Legal Style presented by AAA. NHRA also offers NHRA Jr. Street program for teens and the Summit Racing Jr. Drag Racing League for youth ages 5 to 17. In addition, NHRA owns and operates five racing facilities: Atlanta Dragway in Georgia; Gainesville Raceway in Florida; National Trail Raceway in Ohio; Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis; and Auto Club Raceway at Pomona in Southern California. For more information, log on to NHRA.com, or visit the official NHRA pages on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.
Source: National Hot Rod Association