NHRA heads to Florida for Gatornationals: Destination race for fans
· Bob Tasca’s next round win will be his 100th in the NHRA Mello Yello Series Funny Car category. Since Tasca’s rookie year in 2008, he has more round wins (8) in Gainesville, Fla. than any other driver except for Tony Pedregon, who has nine.
· Tasca, who this month joined 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion Brad Keselowski as a regular columnist to Autoweek’s motorsports section, www.autoweek.com/racing, will go straight to the Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, Ky. after the NHRA Gatornationals.
· He is currently fourth in the NHRA Mello Yello Series point standings.
Pedregon, who won the storied race in 2008 and was the runner-up in 2009 to Tasca, who earned his first career Funny Car win against him, has nine round wins at Gainesville Raceway in the last five years. Tasca, with that win and a runner-up of his own in 2010, has eight.
It’s no wonder Tasca is happy the University of Florida-area track is next on the schedule, especially since his next round win will be his 100th in the NHRA Mello Yello Series Funny Car category.
“It’s the closest race we have to the Daytona 500,” said Tasca, who also ran the quickest lap in Alcohol Funny Car history at 5.451 seconds in Gainesville in 2007. “I have so many memories as a kid there, watching (Ford NHRA Pro Stock legend) Bob Glidden and John Force, and now I have so many memories from my own career there.
“Winning round 100 will be such a cool milestone and I’d be happy to get it at the Gatornationals. It’s amazing how fast things fly by over the years, but that’s a big deal, and winning races is a big deal. We really want to get this Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Shelby Mustang back to the winner’s circle where I got my first win. Our goal is to leave with 104 (round wins.”