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Jul 28, 2014 - 07:00 AM
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2014 NHRA: Matt Hagan NHRA Sonoma Nationals Event Recap: Semifinal
Posted by: newsla on Jul 28, 2014 - 06:56 AM
2014 NHRA: Matt Hagan NHRA Sonoma Nationals Event Recap: Semifinal

Matt Hagan fell short of honoring the 426 race HEMI 50th Anniversary Tribute Funny Car in the Sonoma winner's circle on Sunday but he is eager for another opportunity next weekend.


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In the opening round of NHRA Sonoma Nationals competition at Sonoma Raceway, Matt, the No. 5 qualifier, defeated Tony Pedregon before defeating Tim Wilkerson in the second round.

The team led by crew chief Dickie Venables and assistant Mike Knudsen had lane choice in the semifinal against Courtney Force but their 10,000-horsepower Dodge Charger R/T lost traction and Force went on to win.

"It was a good race for us this weekend," he said. "We were solid in qualifying that gave us some good data coming into race day and that got us some round wins. We were just pushing it a little too hard there in the semifinal and that's what you have to do out here because competition is so darn tough."

It was the third semifinal finish in 15 races for Matt and the Mopar team who have one event title and a runner-up this season.

Matt was thrilled that the second stop on NHRA's Western Swing that began last weekend near Denver and ends next weekend near Seattle was kind to his Mopar team.

"You know, you roll into Denver and we change so much on the car that it makes it tough to get everything switched back and get back to normal. But Dickie and the guys did an outstanding job coming into here and we came off the trailer fast.

"We'll go on to Seattle where we won last year and try to repeat. That's our goal."

Event Winner: Courtney Force (John Force Racing)
No. 1 Qualifier: Courtney Force (JFR), 4.045, 319.22

MATT HAGAN, 426 Race HEMI 50th Anniversary Tribute Mopar Dodge Charger R/T
Qualifying Position: No. 5
First round: HAGAN (4.140, 305.91 mph) def. Tony Pedregon (4.320, 234.25 mph)
Second round: HAGAN (4.159, 296.89 mph) def. Tim Wilkerson (5.944, 118.14 mph)
Semifinal: Courtney Force (4.235, 293.86) def. HAGAN (6.067, 118.00 mph)
FRIDAY: 4.974 sec., 154.03 mph, (Session 1); 4.075, 307.30 (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 4.169, 297.02, (Session 3); 4.272, 240.68 (Session 4)

(Unofficial after 15 of 24 events; DSR drivers in CAPS)
driver (wins) pts behind
1. Robert Hight (5) 1,216 ----
2. John Force (2) 1,097 -119
3. RON CAPPS (1) 957 -259
4. Courtney Force (2) 941 -275
5. TOMMY JOHNSON JR. (1) 938 -278
6. Alexis DeJoria (2) 883 -333
7. MATT HAGAN (1) 868 -348
8. Cruz Pedregon (1) 840 -376
9. Del Worsham 816 -400
10. Tim Wilkerson 762 -454
11. JACK BECKMAN 743 -473

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