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Jul 21, 2014 - 06:43 AM
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2014 NHRA: Matt Hagan Mopar Mile-High Nationals Event Recap: Second Round
Posted by: newsla on Jul 21, 2014 - 06:42 AM
2014 NHRA: Matt Hagan Mopar Mile-High Nationals Event Recap: Second Round

The Mopar team with driver Matt Hagan didn't walk away from Bandimere Speedway with the event title, but they had a successful weekend celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the 426 Race HEMI.


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The team led by crew chief Dickie Venables qualified eighth in the Funny Car category of the MOPAR Mile-High Nationals in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series.

On Sunday morning before eliminations, the 426 Race HEMI 50th Anniversary Tribute Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car was named the best appearing car at Bandimere Speedway near Denver.

The Mopar team defeated Alexis DeJoria in the opening round before falling to John Force in the second round.

"Obviously our weekend didn't end the way we wanted it to with it being a Mopar race," Matt said. "We wanted to be holding the trophy at the end of the day and celebrate with our Mopar family but it just didn't happen that way."

The Mopar team was able to move up one spot in NHRA Mello Yello points to seventh. The points will be reset at the conclusion of the U.S. Nationals near Indianapolis, just four races away, for the six-race Countdown to the Championship playoff.

"We did manage to move up a spot in the points which was great," he said. "That's our goal while we're out here on this Western Swing and this weekend was a step in the right direction for that."

The MOPAR Mile-High NHRA Nationals is the first stop of the annual Western Swing with three races in three weeks. After Denver, the Swing shifts to Sonoma, Calif., and closes with a stop near Seattle.

"We'll move on to the next one and try to get back to normal. We had to change so much for this race we'll get our normal tune-up back in it and go on to Sonoma where we qualified number one last year. I'm excited to get back there."

Event Winner: Robert Hight (John Force Racing)
No. 1 Qualifier: John Force (John Force Racing) 4.049 sec., 318.39 mph (track records)

MATT HAGAN, 426 Race HEMI 50th Anniversary Tribute Mopar Dodge Charger R/T
Qualifying Position: No. 8
First round: MATT HAGAN (4.200, 281.60) def. Alexis DeJoria (4.930, 172.61)
Second round: John Force (4.202, 305.36) def. MATT HAGAN (4.832, 190.46)
FRIDAY: 8.243 sec., 84.39 mph, (Session 1); 4.111, 300.73 (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 4.320, 287.23 (Session 3); 4.111, 311.41 (Session 4)

(Unofficial after 14 of 24 events; DSR drivers in CAPS)

driver (wins) pts behind
1. Robert Hight (5) 1,179 ----
2. John Force (2) 998 -181
3. RON CAPPS (1) 921 -258
4. TOMMY JOHNSON JR. (1) 882 -297
5. Courtney Force (1) 817 -362
6. Alexis DeJoria (2) 811 -368
7. MATT HAGAN (1) 794 -385
8. Cruz Pedregon (1) 781 -398
9. Del Worsham 780 -399
10. Tim Wilkerson 711 -468
11. JACK BECKMAN 708 -471

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