Funny Car Champ Matt Hagan Nominated for ESPYS Best Driver Award

240627 Funny Car champ Matt Hagan nominated for ESPYS Best Driver Award [678]

INDIANAPOLIS, IN – June 27, 2024 – (Motor Sports NewsWire) – Reigning NHRA Funny Car world champion Matt Hagan has been nominated for the 2024 ESPYS Best Driver Award for his stellar performance during a standout 2023 NHRA championship season.

Hagan picked up his fourth career title and the first-ever NHRA world championship for Tony Stewart Racing in his 11,000-horsepower TSR Direct Connection Dodge//SRT Hellcat.

This is the first time Hagan has been nominated for the illustrious Best Driver Award, as Hagan entered select Funny Car company in 2023 with his fourth world title. With the championship, Hagan joined legends John Force, Kenny Bernstein and Don Prudhomme as the only Funny Car drivers in NHRA history with four or more world titles. He also gave Tony Stewart Racing its first world title in just its second year.

“I’m blown away to be nominated for the ESPYS,” Hagan said. “It just goes show what you can do when you’re surrounded by a great group of guys who are motivated and work hard. It takes a small army to do what we do, and it does take everyone. It’s a huge opportunity, but it’s not just me, it’s the entire team.

“It’s a humbling sport and it’s a humbling car to drive, and this is a group that just works hard. We’re thankful for all the fans who support us and hopefully they’ll go out and vote for us, but at the end of the day, I’m just very honored to be nominated.”

Fans can click here to vote for Hagan, who is again a championship contender during the 2024 NHRA Mission Series Drag Racing Series season. Voting is open until 5 p.m. ET Thursday, July 11, three hours before the ESPYS will air at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

Matt Hagan

Hagan enjoyed an incredible 2023 season in the Funny Car ranks, picking up six victories and advancing to eight final rounds in the loaded category. He held the points lead for the bulk of the regular season and then got hot at a key time in the Countdown to the Championship, winning back-to-back playoff races in St. Louis and Dallas to take the points lead for good.

Other highlights of his banner title season included victories at Gainesville, Pomona 1 and Denver, as well as qualifying No. 1 at Bandimere Speedway. This year, Hagan recorded another milestone, earning his 50th career Funny Car win at the four-wide race in Charlotte, joining Force, Ron Capps and Robert Hight as the only drivers in Funny Car history with 50 or more wins. Hagan and Force are the only Funny Car drivers with four or more world titles and 50 or more wins. Hagan also earned his 51st career victory last month in Chicago and is currently third in points.

Joining Hagan on the ESPY Best Driver ballot is NASCAR’s Ryan Blaney, IndyCar’s Alex Palou and Formula One’s Max Verstappen.

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About Mission Foods

MISSION®, owned by GRUMA, S.A.B. de C.V., is the world’s leading brand for tortillas and wraps. MISSION® is also globally renowned for flatbreads, dips, salsas and Mexican food products. With presence in over 112 countries, MISSION® products are suited to the lifestyles and the local tastes of each country. With innovation and customer needs in mind, MISSION® focuses on the highest quality, authentic flavors, and providing healthy options that families and friends can enjoy together. For more information, please visit https://www.missionfoods.com/

About NHRA

NHRA is the primary sanctioning body for the sport of drag racing in the United States. NHRA presents 20 national events featuring the NHRA Mission Foods Drag Racing Series and NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series, as well as the Congruity NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by LearnEV+, NHRA Flexjet Factory Stock Showdown™, NHRA Holley EFI Factory X and Johnson’s Horsepowered Garage NHRA Mountain Motor Pro Stock at select national events. 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 110 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

NHRA Mission Foods Drag Racing Series

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