By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher
Funny Cars return to the Route 66 NHRA Nationals this weekend. This is event No. 9 of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season and will take place from Friday, May 30 to June 2 at Route 66 Raceway in Elwood, Illinois.
Robert Hight will look to win his second straight event at this facility. Last year, the John Force Racing President defeated Ron Capps in the final round.
Hight went 4.073 at 310.63 mph for the win. Capps went 4.310 at 230.21 mph in the losing effort.
John Force Racing’s dynamic duo in Hight and living legend John Force will be competing. In addition, Don Schumacher Racing’s four Funny Car pilots — Capps, Jack Beckman, Tommy Johnson Jr., and Matt Hagan — will be there, as well.
Capps will attempt to win his third straight race with the NAPA Brakes livery. He previously won in Atlanta and Virginia with it.
Kalitta Motorsports pilots J.R. Todd and Shawn Langdon will be competing near Chicago. Fellow full-time pilot Tim Wilkerson will be competing, as well.
Snap-On Tools pilot Cruz Pedregon will be there, as well. However, if you are looking to purchase any merchandise from him at the event, the Nitro Fish merchandise trailer caught fire and will not be at the race.
Fellow full-time pilot Robert Tasca III will be there in his Ford Motorcraft/Quick Lane Funny Car. Dunn Racing pilot Jim Campbell will also be competing.
There will be 19 Funny Cars on the property. Only 16 will make the show on Sunday for eliminations. This means three will not make it.
Other Funny Car drivers on the property include Paul Lee, Terry Haddock, Jeff Arena — who is filling in for Jonnie Lindberg, who is back home in Sweden as he attempts to become a U.S. citizen, Blake Alexander, Dale Creasy Jr., Bob Bode Jr., and Justin Schriefer.
Force and Hagan are tied for the most wins at this facility by an active driver. Force had wins in 2006, 2004, and 2000. Hagan won in 2014, 2013, and 2010.
NHRA Broadcaster Tony Pedregon has the all-time wins record with four at the Route 66 NHRA Nationals. He had wins in 2009, 2008, 2003, and 2002.