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2014 NHRA: Patron XO Cafe Team Remains in Top Three After Respectful Showing at Toyota NHRA SummerNationals
Posted by: newsla on Jun 02, 2014 - 06:44 AM
2014 NHRA: Patron XO Cafe Team Remains in Top Three After Respectful Showing at Toyota NHRA SummerNationals

A 4.027-second at 314.31-mph Q2 run earned Alexis DeJoria and the Kalitta Motorsports Patrón XO Cafe Toyota Camry team a spot in the ‘quick half’ of the ultra-competitive Funny Car field at the 45th annual Toyota NHRA SummerNationals in Englishtown, N.J. With one of the quickest Sunday lineups of the season, which included two 3.9-second runs, DeJoria’s 4.027 put her in the No. 6 qualifying spot and gave her the advantage of lane choice over No. 11 qualifier Jeff Arend on Sunday morning.


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There wasn’t a cloud in the sky over Old Bridge Township Raceway Park, and the air temperature was much warmer than the previous two qualifying days. The hotter temps proved troublesome for many of the top-ranked teams, but it was no problem for the Tommy DeLago/Glen Huszar-lead XO Cafe team. DeJoria powered her purple, gold and matte-black Toyota Camry to a stout 4.064-sec at 311.56-mph pass- the quickest run of the session.

Round two found DeJoria in a grudge match against Robert Hight. Going into the round, she had a four-to-one record over Hight. Two of their matchups came during the Phoenix and Vegas final rounds with DeJoria coming out the victor, but Hight had outrun her at their most recent matchup in Houston. In a nail-biter of a race, Hight took the win again this Sunday with his 4.086 to her 4.107- which held up to be the two quickest ET’s of round two.

“Overall, we had a pretty good outing here at the Toyota NHRA SummerNationals in Englishtown,” said DeJoria, who has been ranked third in the Funny Car points standings since February’s Phoenix race. “We qualified well, and ran some good numbers. Today we definitely fought that hot track, but we did excellent in the first round and got top ET of the session.”

“We went out there second round, and the track was a little bit hotter. Right off the line, the car tried to spin the tires, but it just kept going and made a good run. We had the second quickest run of the session, but Robert had the first, so that was it for us. Drag racing is truly a ‘right place, at the right time’ kind of sport. Unfortunately, this time we got outran, and that was the end of our day.”

DeJoria and the Patrón XO Cafe team have a week off before a grueling four-in-a-row stretch. “We’re going to take this next week off, chill, unwind and get ready for Bristol.” The four race swing kicks off with the NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals in Bristol, Tenn. The team will enter the event ranked 3rd with 564 points.

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