No repeat winner at Gatornationals
By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher
There will not be a repeat winner in Pro Stock at the Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals this weekend at Gainesville Raceway in Gainesville, Florida. Tanner Gray is no longer in drag racing.
Gray defeated Bo Butner in the final round of the 2018 Gatornationals. Gray went 6.588 at 210.18 mph for the win.
Butner, the runner-up, went 6.605 at 210.34 in the losing effort.
Gray announced that at the end of the season, he would transfer to NASCAR. He felt that NASCAR marketed their stars better than the NHRA.
To date, Gray finished 12th in his lone NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race at the New Smyrna 175 at New Smyrna Speedway in New Smyrna Beach, Florida. He also finished 12th in his lone ARCA Menards race at the ARCA Pensacola 200 at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Florida.
This will be the historic 50th anniversary of the Gatornationals. This is the second most-important event of the 2019 season, besides the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals in September.
Traditionally, if there is Pro Mods at an event, there would not be Top Alcohol Dragster or Top Alcohol Funny Car. If there was Pro Stock Motorcycle, there would not be Top Fuel Harley.
However, at this event, they have everyone. In addition, there will be a grudge race with eight legends in an “Unfinished Business” segment.
There are 17 Pro Stock cars on the entry list. One car will not make the final show on Sunday.
Team Elite’s four race cars will be on the property. This includes Erica Enders-Stevens, Jeg Coughlin Jr., Alex Loughlin, and Rodger Brogdon.
The Tomball, Texas native will be bringing $5,000 to the track in a special promotion. See Rodger Brogdon Racing on Facebook for the details.
Team Summit will have its five cars at the track. Team Summit includes Greg Anderson, Jason Line, Bo Butner III, Deric Kramer, and Fernando Cuadra.
Two Pro Stock drivers, who competed in the season-opener in Pomona, before missing out in Phoenix, are returning. Jeff Isbell and Shane Tucker will be at the facility.
KD Racing’s Kenny Delco and Val Smeland will be competing. New Jersey native Alan Prusiensky will also be there.
Arizona native Matt Hartford and Texas native Chris McGaha will be competing, as well. Non-regular Baron Stroupe will be there, as the North Carolina native will attempt to make the show.
Warren Johnson has the most wins from any Pro Stock driver at the track with nine. Anderson is the active driver with the most wins in Gainesville with four.
“The Professor” won in 2000, 1999, 1998, 1994, 1993, 1992, 1991, 1985, and 1984. Anderson won in 2016, 2015, 2007, and 2004.