Text and Photos Courtesy of NHRA/National Dragster
One week after earning the first No. 1 qualifier of his career in Houston, Jose Gonzalez notched his first career victory in the E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by J&A Service portion of the NGK Spark Plugs NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMAX Dragway. This weekend’s Pro Mod racing, presented by Al-Anabi Performance, was the third of 12 events this season.
Gonzalez ran a 5.743-second pass at 254.09 mph in his Chevrolet Q80 Camaro to take down Steve Jackson, Rickie Smith and Brandon Snider in the final round. Gonzalez became the first Domincan-born driver to earn a victory at an NHRA national event with his triumph in Charlotte.
“My team gave me a tremendous car all week long and we figured out how to respond as the weather got warmer and our car continued to improve,” Gonzalez said. “This car has been running amazingly so far, so I’m happy for my car and my crew to get this victory.”
After a first round exit in Gainesville, Gonzalez notched his first No. 1 qualifier in Houston before being eliminated in the quarterfinals. He leaves Charlotte fourth in the points standings, as Smith and Jackson currently lead the class through three events.
The E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by J&A Service continues at the Menards NHRA Heartland Nationals presented by Minties in Topeka, KS on May 18-20.
CONCORD, N.C. — Final finish order (1-16) for professional categories at the ninth annual NGK Spark Plugs NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMax Dragway. The race is the third of 12 events in the NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series.
- Jose Gonzalez; 2. Steve Jackson; 3. Rickie Smith; 4. Brandon Snider; 5. Mike Janis; 6.
Michael Biehle; 7. Sidnei Frigo; 8. Khalid alBalooshi; 9. Chad Green; 10. Jeremy Ray; 11.
Sidnei Frigo; 12. Dan Stevenson; 13. Todd Tutterow; 14. Chuck Little; 15. Pete Farber; 16.
Sunday’s final results from the ninth annual NGK Spark Plugs NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMax Dragway. The race is the third of 12 events in the NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series.
Pro Modified — Jose Gonzalez, Chevy Camaro, 5.743, 254.09 def. Steve Jackson, Camaro, 5.763,
243.68 and Rickie Smith, Camaro, 5.775, 250.74 and Brandon Snider, Chevy Corvette, 6.393, 162.10;
Final round-by-round results from the ninth annual NGK Spark Plugs NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMax Dragway, the third of 12 events in the NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series.
ROUND ONE — Rickie Smith, Chevy Camaro, 5.773, 250.18 and Jose Gonzalez, Camaro, 5.785, 254.57 def. Jeremy Ray, Chevy Corvette, 6.707, 224.62 and Pete Farber, Dodge Daytona, 10.372, 83.84; Mike Janis, Camaro, 5.775, 244.65 and Sidnei Frigo, Camaro, 7.945, 200.50 and Danny Rowe, Camaro, DQ; Steve Jackson, Camaro, 5.736, 249.35 and Brandon Snider, Corvette, 6.036, 245.36 def. Dan Stevenson, Camaro, 8.929, 108.11 and Todd Tutterow, Camaro, 6.116, 232.59; Khalid alBalooshi, Camaro, 5.736, 251.72 and Michael Biehle, Ford Mustang, 6.009, 250.04 def. Chad Green, Camaro, 6.665, 233.60 and Chuck Little, Corvette, 7.023, 144.91; SEMIFINALS — Jackson, 5.762, 249.90 and Snider, 5.818, 248.48 def. Janis, 5.764, 247.52 and Frigo, 6.261, 176.90; Smith, 5.752, 252.24 and Gonzalez, 5.726, 256.45 def. Biehle, 5.891, 251.81 and alBalooshi, broke; FINAL — Gonzalez, 5.743, 254.09 def. Jackson, 5.763, 243.68, Smith, 5.775, 250.74 and Snider, 6.393, 162.10.
Point standings (top 10) for NHRA professional categories following the ninth annual NGK Spark Plugs NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMax Dragway, the third of 12 events in the NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series.
- Rickie Smith, 240; 2. Steve Jackson, 231; 3. Mike Janis, 205; 4. Jose Gonzalez, 199; 5. Jim Whiteley, 173; 6. Mike Castellana, 148; 7. Khalid alBalooshi, 144; 8. Chad Green, 135; 9. Todd Tutterow, 118; 10. Bob Rahaim, 113.