Pedregon wants to return to the Chili Bowl Nationals

By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher

Cruz Pedregon, the owner of Pedregon Racing and the driver of the Snap-On Funny Car, announced on Sunday that he would like to enter into the 2018 Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals.

“That’s the goal,” he said. “Since I’ve hired Aaron [Brooks on Dec. 10, 2016], it takes a lot of pressure off of me and gives me a little more free time. The last three years, I’ve wanted to go back, but testing and off-season projects and just studying my tune up, [it] wouldn’t let me go to watch or anything.

“[In] 2018, my goal is to go there and probably jump into someone’s car. I just wanna have fun. I love dirt racing.”

Cruz Pedregon in his Snap-On Funny Car (Photo by Pedregon Racing)

Cruz Pedregon in his Snap-On Funny Car (Photo by Pedregon Racing)

The Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals takes place at the River Spirit Expo Center in Tulsa, Okla. The 32nd Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals are slated to begin on Jan. 8, 2018 with practice then racing will start the next day.

Toyota Racing had 29 drivers at this year’s event, according to spokesman John Procida. There was 380 drivers at the event, Procida said.

Procida said that Pedregon has done this before but it’s been several years since he had.

He’ll return to his Funny Car with testing soon before starting the 2017 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series in February. He’ll look to break a winless drought that dates back to June 2014 when he won the Toyota NHRA Summernationals at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park in Englishtown, N.J.

The past two years, before the NHRA Summernationals, Pedregon along other NHRA drivers and personnel would attend the USAC Racing event at New Egypt Speedway the night before the start of the popular NHRA event in N.J.

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