INDIANAPOLIS, IN – September 5, 2023 – (Motor Sports NewsWire) – Antron Brown and Ron Capps swept the 69th annual Dodge Power Brokers NHRA U.S. Nationals for the second straight year, winning in Top Fuel and Funny Car, respectively, on Sunday at Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park.
Matt Hartford (Pro Stock) and Matt Smith (Pro Stock Motorcycle) also won the 15th of 21 races during the 2023 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series season. Smith won for the second straight year as well, as the three standouts won the world’s biggest race in back-to-back seasons.
Brown, who qualified in the No. 15 spot, went 3.779-seconds at 328.54 mph in his 11,000-horsepower Matco Tools/Toyota dragster to defeat Steve Torrence in the final round, winning his second straight race this season and the 74th in his career. He beat Brittany Force, Clay Millican and points leader Justin Ashley to reach the finals before driving past Torrence.
Just getting to that point was a massive challenge, as Brown and his team struggled throughout qualifying. But the team persevered in the final qualifying session just to make the field and then took full advantage on Monday to get another incredible Indy win.
“It’s one of those weekends where we never quit and that’s what you have to do to win the U.S. Nationals,” Brown said. “We went through all the trials and tribulations and that’s what makes this win so special. We were coming off that win in Brainerd and we got thrown a curveball. But we got this one done and we’re going to remember this win for a long time.
“This is one that was a getting-dirty win. We went through all the pain, all the stuff all the way through qualifying and we found a way as a team. We never stopped believing. You’ve got to have faith. I love this team so much. They never quit, never stopped working and all the credit goes to this team. They worked so, so hard and to win this two years in a row, it’s amazing.”
Torrence, who was the No. 1 qualifier, defeated Will Smith, Shawn Langdon and Doug Kalitta to advance to the final round for the fourth time in 2023 and 85th time in his career. Ashley will open the Countdown to the Championship in the points lead.
In Funny Car, Capps won his second straight race this year as well, going 3.986 at 323.27 in his 11,000-horsepower Hot Wheels/NAPA Auto Parts Toyota GR Supra to get around J.R. Todd in the championship round. He defeated Dale Creasy Jr., Matt Hagan and Robert Hight to reach the finals, taking over the points lead in the process, before picking up his 76th career win and second straight at The Big Go.
Sporting a special Don Prudhomme Hot Wheels throwback this weekend, Capps reveled in the magical moment as Prudhomme was in attendance all weekend to witness the victory. Capps drove for the legendary Prudhomme early in his career and to honor one of the sport’s icons and end up in the winner’s circle at the world’s biggest drag race had a historic meaning for the back-to-back Funny Car world champion.
“You can’t dream this big. I mean, you could hope and you can put all this stuff together and we did it to have some fun to do something cool for Indy,” Capps said. “This just doesn’t happen. You just put this together and hope that it’s going to have some success and you end up winning.
“This is an unbelievable thing. To win here, to win Indy with my brother Antron (Brown) again is massive. This whole week has just been a blast and we earned every bit of it today. It was very cool.”
“It’s just amazing,” added Prudhomme. “When he first sent me the paint scheme it brought a tear to my eye. I thought ‘This thing’s beautiful.’ It’s just this is something I’m going to remember for a long time.”
Todd reached his fourth final round in 2023 on the strength of round wins against Blake Alexander, Bob Tasca III and Cruz Pedregon. It’s also the 45th career final round for Todd.
Matt Hartford can now say he’s a U.S. Nationals winner in Pro Stock, finishing off a dominant weekend in style by going 6.624 at 206.57 in his Total Seal/GETTRX Chevrolet Camaro to defeat Fernando Cuadra Jr. in the championship round. Hartford was the driver to beat all weekend, qualifying No. 1 and ending up with his second win of the season and the seventh in his career. It’s the first time Hartford has won more than one race in a season and he’ll head into the playoffs second in points and a huge threat to win his first championship.
Hartford knocked off Mason McGaha, Camrie Caruso and defending world champion Erica Enders to reach the final round before rolling to the victory in a final round he will always remember.
“I let the clutch out, I pulled second gear and never saw him, put it in fifth gear and I’m still deaf from my crew chief screaming in my ear,” Hartford said. “When I got to the other end and realized I’d just won Indy, I just sat in the car for a few moments to take it all in.
“We came in here Friday night and our goal was to qualify No. 1 Friday night. If we could do that, we felt it could stick and we would have four really good test runs. What we ran in the final was what we tested in one of the qualifying runs. The track conditions became basically what that was, so being able to be on the pole and have that test data played a huge role in the final.”
Cuadra Jr. reached the final round for the first time in his career, getting past Bo Butner, Troy Coughlin Jr. and Kyle Koretsky. Dallas Glenn will take the points lead into the Countdown to the Championship.
A challenging year got a whole lot better for Matt Smith in Pro Stock Motorcycle, as the defending world champion won for the second straight year at The Big Go, clinching the victory when Hector Arana Jr. went red. Smith put together a run of 6.864 at 198.20 on his Denso Auto Parts Suzuki, handing the veteran his first win this season and the 37th in his career. His raceday included victories against John Hall, rookie Chase Van Sant and points leader Gaige Herrera before his triumph in the final round, as Smith won the U.S. Nationals for the third time in his career.
It’s been a challenging year for Smith, but he’ll now enter the Countdown to the Championship second in points and with plenty of momentum as he looks for a record seventh Pro Stock Motorcycle championship and fourth in a row.
“I’m not surprised at all,” Smith said. “I’ve got good power. This is our second year with the Suzuki program and we’ve got great power. The problem is that I can’t figure out how to make the clutch work. I need the parts to test because we’re not getting our 60-foot times where we need them. I think a 1.09 was my best and that’s not good enough. I’ve always said you need to be good at the last six races to win a championship so now it’s time to turn it up.”
Arana Jr. knocked off Chris Bostick, Kelly Clontz and Angie Smith to reach the finals for the second time in 2023 and 32nd time overall. Herrera will open the playoffs as the points leader.
The NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series opens its Countdown to the Championship playoffs with the 38th annual Pep Boys NHRA Nationals on Sept. 14-17 at Maple Grove Raceway in Reading, Penn.
INDIANAPOLIS, IN — Final finish order (1-16) at the 69th annual Dodge Power Brokers NHRA U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park. The race is the 15th of 21 events in the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series.
1. Antron Brown; 2. Steve Torrence; 3. Justin Ashley; 4. Doug Kalitta; 5. Clay Millican; 6. Shawn Langdon; 7. Mike Salinas; 8. Leah Pruett; 9. Doug Foley; 10. Tony Schumacher; 11. Austin Prock; 12. Spencer Massey; 13. Will Smith; 14. Brittany Force; 15. Josh Hart; 16. T.J. Zizzo.
1. Ron Capps; 2. J.R. Todd; 3. Cruz Pedregon; 4. Robert Hight; 5. Bob Tasca III; 6. Alexis DeJoria; 7. Tim Wilkerson; 8. Matt Hagan; 9. Blake Alexander; 10. Chad Green; 11. John Force; 12. Terry Haddock; 13. Paul Lee; 14. Bobby Bode; 15. Dale Creasy Jr.; 16. Alex Laughlin.
1. Matt Hartford; 2. Fernando Cuadra Jr.; 3. Erica Enders; 4. Kyle Koretsky; 5. Dallas Glenn; 6. Aaron Stanfield; 7. Camrie Caruso; 8. Troy Coughlin Jr.; 9. Deric Kramer; 10. Eric Latino; 11. Chris McGaha; 12. Jerry Tucker; 13. Greg Anderson; 14. Mason McGaha; 15. Bo Butner; 16. Cristian Cuadra.
PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE:
1. Matt Smith; 2. Hector Arana Jr; 3. Gaige Herrera; 4. Angie Smith; 5. Chase Van Sant; 6. Kelly Clontz; 7. Ron Tornow; 8. Eddie Krawiec; 9. Marc Ingwersen; 10. Chris Bostick; 11. Bud Yoder II; 12. Ryan Oehler; 13. Cory Reed; 14. Jianna Evaristo; 15. John Hall; 16. Steve Johnson.
INDIANAPOLIS, IN — Monday’s final results from the 69th annual Dodge Power Brokers NHRA U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park. The race is the 15th of 21 in the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series:
Top Fuel — Antron Brown, 3.779 seconds, 328.54 mph def. Steve Torrence, 3.870 seconds, 327.43 mph.
Funny Car — Ron Capps, Toyota GR Supra, 3.986, 323.27 def. J.R. Todd, GR Supra, 4.131, 288.09.
Pro Stock — Matt Hartford, Chevy Camaro, 6.624, 206.57 def. Fernando Cuadra Jr., Ford Mustang, 7.099, 178.87.
Pro Stock Motorcycle — Matt Smith, Suzuki, 6.864, 198.20 def. Hector Arana Jr, EBR, Foul – Red Light.
Top Alcohol Dragster — Madison Payne, 10.073, 85.76 def. Julie Nataas, Foul – Red Light.
Top Alcohol Funny Car — Sean Bellemeur, Chevy Camaro, 5.521, 263.82 def. Doug Gordon, Camaro, 5.537, 266.32.
Competition Eliminator — Chase Williams, Dragster, 6.921, 190.38 def. Troy Galbraith, Dragster, 6.787, 189.71.
Super Stock — Wyatt Wagner, Chevy Camaro, 9.763, 129.79 def. Frankie Morris, Camaro, Foul – Red Light.
Stock Eliminator — Donnie Beeler, Chevy Camaro, 10.899, 122.93 def. Ross Ponville, Camaro, 10.105, 127.63.
Super Comp — Devin Isenhower, Dragster, 8.897, 185.41 def. Jason Kenny, Dragster, 8.880, 166.17.
Super Gas — Bo Butner, Chevy Corvette, 9.948, 163.28 def. George Meyer, Chevy Malibu, 9.987, 156.44.
Top Sportsman — Chris Osborn, Chevy Camaro, 6.722, 205.63 def. Steve Jaeger, Chevy Monte Carlo, 6.739, 206.26.
Top Dragster — Jeff Strickland, Dragster, 6.292, 201.55 def. Holden Laris, Dragster, 6.251, 215.96.
Pro Modified — Kris Thorne, Chevy Camaro, 5.827, 248.07 def. Justin Bond, Camaro, 5.777, 246.89.
Factory Stock Showdown — Jesse Alexandra, Chevy Camaro, 7.831, 175.05 def. Stephen Bell, Camaro, 7.811, 177.60.
Factory X — Greg Stanfield, Chevy Camaro, 7.254, 191.73 def. Chris Holbrook, Ford Mustand, 8.047, 173.09.
INDIANAPOLIS, IN — Final round-by-round results from the 69th annual Dodge Power Brokers NHRA U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park, the 15th of 21 events in the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series:
ROUND ONE — Shawn Langdon, 3.809, 315.71 def. Josh Hart, 3.968, 307.37; Clay Millican, 3.752, 333.58 def. T.J. Zizzo, 4.348, 183.59; Antron Brown, 3.749, 320.05 def. Brittany Force, 3.870, 244.21; Justin Ashley, 3.719, 333.41 def. Doug Foley, 3.763, 317.87; Doug Kalitta, 3.692, 336.49 def. Spencer Massey, 3.798, 326.95; Steve Torrence, 3.716, 333.08 def. Will Smith, 3.830, 309.42; Mike Salinas, 3.757, 308.92 def. Tony Schumacher, 3.770, 326.00; Leah Pruett, 3.747, 333.33 def. Austin Prock, 3.777, 319.29;
QUARTERFINALS — Brown, 3.791, 326.79 def. Millican, 3.919, 275.96; Ashley, 3.753, 332.34 def. Pruett, 7.617, 92.86; Torrence, 4.086, 230.61 def. Langdon, 4.266, 297.55; Kalitta, 3.888, 313.73 def. Salinas, 6.574, 98.54;
SEMIFINALS — Torrence, 4.158, 255.15 def. Kalitta, 8.290, 90.78; Brown, 4.924, 165.44 def. Ashley, 6.569, 141.71;
FINAL — Brown, 3.779, 328.54 def. Torrence, 3.870, 327.43.
ROUND ONE — Bob Tasca III, Ford Mustang, 3.899, 332.43 def. Terry Haddock, Mustang, 4.061, 300.80; Alexis DeJoria, Toyota GR Supra, 3.889, 331.61 def. Bobby Bode, Mustang, 4.187, 253.90; Robert Hight, Chevy Camaro, 3.889, 329.67 def. Paul Lee, Dodge Charger, 4.119, 258.81; Matt Hagan, Charger, 3.914, 329.91 def. Alex Laughlin, Charger, 6.157, 108.84; Ron Capps, GR Supra, 3.894, 326.87 def. Dale Creasy Jr., Charger, 4.605, 193.24; Cruz Pedregon, Charger, 3.962, 324.36 def. John Force, Camaro, 3.998, 318.69; J.R. Todd, GR Supra, 3.913, 304.19 def. Blake Alexander, Mustang, 3.972, 324.83; Tim Wilkerson, Mustang, 3.913, 329.58 def. Chad Green, Mustang, 3.989, 328.94;
QUARTERFINALS — Todd, 3.974, 327.66 def. Tasca III, 3.945, 327.11; Pedregon, 3.944, 325.30 def. DeJoria, 3.973, 326.48; Hight, 3.952, 318.99 def. Wilkerson, 5.032, 152.37; Capps, 4.582, 235.19 def. Hagan, 5.146, 184.50;
SEMIFINALS — Todd, 4.007, 326.32 def. Pedregon, 5.557, 133.16; Capps, 4.029, 323.50 def. Hight, 5.580, 138.43;
FINAL — Capps, 3.986, 323.27 def. Todd, 4.131, 288.09.
ROUND ONE — Camrie Caruso, Chevy Camaro, 6.630, 206.51 def. Cristian Cuadra, Ford Mustang, Broke; Fernando Cuadra Jr., Mustang, 6.652, 205.41 def. Bo Butner, Camaro, 18.956, 43.04; Kyle Koretsky, Camaro, 6.639, 206.32 def. Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.857, 179.14; Dallas Glenn, Camaro, 6.631, 206.45 def. Deric Kramer, Camaro, 6.636, 206.20; Matt Hartford, Camaro, 6.613, 206.83 def. Mason McGaha, Camaro, 11.496, 77.08; Erica Enders, Camaro, 6.618, 208.17 def. Chris McGaha, Camaro, 6.647, 208.01; Aaron Stanfield, Camaro, 6.613, 208.26 def. Eric Latino, Camaro, 6.640, 206.57; Troy Coughlin Jr., Camaro, 6.619, 207.59 def. Jerry Tucker, Camaro, 6.671, 206.13;
QUARTERFINALS — Cuadra Jr., 6.707, 205.26 def. Coughlin Jr., 14.854, 56.87; Enders, 6.644, 207.75 def. Glenn, 6.638, 205.82; Hartford, 6.643, 206.76 def. Caruso, 6.649, 206.80; Koretsky, 6.654, 206.20 def. Stanfield, 6.645, 207.62;
SEMIFINALS — Cuadra Jr., 7.275, 201.79 def. Koretsky, 7.300, 202.06; Hartford, 6.648, 206.61 def. Enders, 6.676, 206.92;
FINAL — Hartford, 6.624, 206.57 def. Cuadra Jr., 7.099, 178.87.
PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE:
ROUND ONE — Ron Tornow, 7.005, 193.02 def. Jianna Evaristo, Suzuki, 7.121, 167.05; Angie Smith, 6.913, 196.47 def. Marc Ingwersen, 6.931, 195.99; Kelly Clontz, Suzuki, 7.453, 172.72 def. Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 9.039, 97.53; Chase Van Sant, Suzuki, 6.857, 197.33 def. Ryan Oehler, 7.044, 193.21; Matt Smith, Suzuki, 6.888, 198.44 def. John Hall, 7.217, 192.66; Hector Arana Jr, 6.882, 200.29 def. Chris Bostick, 6.962, 190.14; Eddie Krawiec, Suzuki, 6.870, 198.50 def. Bud Yoder II, Buell, 7.028, 191.95; Gaige Herrera, Suzuki, 6.793, 198.58 def. Cory Reed, Suzuki, 7.091, 189.79;
QUARTERFINALS — Arana Jr, 6.828, 199.79 def. Clontz, 6.956, 194.58; A. Smith, 6.932, 196.62 def. Krawiec, 7.059, 198.47; M. Smith, 6.866, 198.20 def. Van Sant, 6.894, 196.04; Herrera, 6.768, 199.29 def. Tornow, 6.991, 193.46;
SEMIFINALS — Arana Jr, 6.896, 200.14 def. A. Smith, 6.925, 196.22; M. Smith, 6.876, 198.35 def. Herrera, 6.920, 197.97;
FINAL — M. Smith, 6.864, 198.20 def. Arana Jr, Foul – Red Light.
INDIANAPOLIS, IN — Point standings (top 10) following the 69th annual Dodge Power Brokers NHRA U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park, the 15th of 21 events in the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series –
1. Justin Ashley, 1,250; 2. Steve Torrence, 1,186; 3. Antron Brown, 1,076; 4. Leah Pruett, 954; 5. Brittany Force, 943; 6. Doug Kalitta, 867; 7. Mike Salinas, 855; 8. Austin Prock, 838; 9. Clay Millican, 799; 10. Josh Hart, 768.
1. Ron Capps, 1,250; 2. Matt Hagan, 1,139; 3. Robert Hight, 1,068; 4. Bob Tasca III, 985; 5. J.R. Todd, 930; 6. Alexis DeJoria, 926; 7. Chad Green, 914; 8. Tim Wilkerson, 902; 9. John Force, 799; 10. Cruz Pedregon, 738.
1. Dallas Glenn, 1,114; 2. Matt Hartford, 937; 3. Erica Enders, 816; 4. Troy Coughlin Jr., 801; 5. Deric Kramer, 782; 6. Aaron Stanfield, 745; 7. Greg Anderson, 725; 8. Kyle Koretsky, 668; 9. Camrie Caruso, 656; 10. Cristian Cuadra, 551.
Pro Stock Motorcycle
1. Gaige Herrera, 1,055; 2. Matt Smith, 729; 3. Hector Arana Jr, 717; 4. Eddie Krawiec, 657; 5. Angie Smith, 617; 6. Steve Johnson, 535; 7. Chase Van Sant, 503; 8. Marc Ingwersen, 393; 9. Jianna Evaristo, 391; 10. Kelly Clontz, 373.
About Camping World Holdings, Inc.
Camping World Holdings, Inc., headquartered in Lincolnshire, IL, (together with its subsidiaries) is America’s largest retailer of RVs and related products and services. Our vision is to build a long-term legacy business that makes RVing fun and easy, and our Camping World and Good Sam brands have been serving RV consumers since 1966. We strive to build long-term value for our customers, employees, and shareholders by combining a unique and comprehensive assortment of RV products and services with a national network of RV dealerships, service centers and customer support centers along with the industry’s most extensive online presence and a highly trained and knowledgeable team of associates serving our customers, the RV lifestyle, and the communities in which we operate. We also believe that our Good Sam organization and family of programs and services uniquely enable us to connect with our customers as stewards of the RV enthusiast community and the RV lifestyle. With RV sales and service locations in 42 states, Camping World has grown to become the prime destinations for everything RV. For more information, visit www.CampingWorld.com
Headquartered in San Dimas, Calif., NHRA is the primary sanctioning body for the sport of drag racing in the United States. NHRA presents 21 national events featuring the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series, NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series, FuelTech NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by Type A Motorsports, Flexjet NHRA Factory Stock Showdown™ and Top Fuel Harley Series. NHRA provides competition opportunities for drivers of all levels in the NHRA Summit Racing Series and NHRA Street Legal™. NHRA also offers the NHRA Jr. Street® program for teens and the Summit Racing Jr. Drag Racing League® for youth ages 5 to 17. With 120 Member Tracks, NHRA allows racers to compete at a variety of locations nationally and internationally. NHRA’s Youth and Education Services® (YES) Program reaches over 30,000 students annually to ignite their interest in automotive and racing related careers. NHRA’s streaming service, NHRA.tv®, allows fans to view all NHRA national events as well as exclusive features of the sport. In addition, NHRA owns and operates three racing facilities: Gainesville Raceway in Florida; Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park; and In-N-Out Burger Pomona Dragstrip in Southern California. For more information, log on to www.NHRA.com, or visit the official NHRA pages on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.
Source: National Hot Rod Association