Gainesville: Cruz Pedregon preview

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (March 12, 2007) -- Cruz Pedregon, the 1992 NHRA Nitro Funny Car world champion, and his Advance Auto Parts Nitro Funny Car Team are headed to Gainesville Raceway in Gainesville, Fla., on March 15-18, for the next round of the...

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (March 12, 2007) -- Cruz Pedregon, the 1992 NHRA Nitro Funny Car world champion, and his Advance Auto Parts Nitro Funny Car Team are headed to Gainesville Raceway in Gainesville, Fla., on March 15-18, for the next round of the 2007 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, the third of 23 powerhouse events this year. Pedregon finished 10th in the 2006 NHRA point standings, accumulating one win early in the year in Las Vegas.

The traditional East Coast opener is one of the sport's most revered with a rich tradition of history-making performances. This hallowed quarter-mile has entertained spring-break-loving fans for decades with such notable occasions as the first 260-mph Top Fuel and Funny Car runs in 1984 and the first 270-mph and 300-mph Top Fuel passes, in 1986 and 1992, respectively. Its 675-foot concrete launchpad is one of the longest on the tour.

"Our Advance Auto Parts team has been working very hard over the last couple weeks in preparation for the Gatornationals," stated Pedregon. "We certainly did not do well in Phoenix, but Wayne (Dupuy, Crew Chief) has identified parts that limited us in Phoenix and we will make the proper adjustments.This race has such history and I am looking forward to a big weekend for the Advance Auto Part race team."

During his rookie season in Funny Car in 1992, Pedregon won the NHRA world championship. With this accomplishment he became the only racer other than John Force to win the championship in the 90s. In 1997, Pedregon was also the first motorsports athlete to receive the "Premio De Oro," the only national award for Hispanic athletes. Born into a racing family, Pedregon's father, Frank, raced Top Fuel dragsters in the 1960s. His brothers Tony and Frank also compete in the Nitro Funny Car ranks. In 1980, Cruz won his first official drag race at the age of 15, driving a 1953 Kenworth truck.

-credit: pr

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Series NHRA
Drivers John Force , Cruz Pedregon