In their Second Pro Race, the Alexis DeJoria Racing Team Makes it to the Field for the First Time
Venice, CA (October 18, 2011) – Kalitta Motorsports’ Alexis DeJoria Racing Team performed well in tough conditions at their second professional showing in Phoenix, AZ this past weekend at the 27th Annual NHRA Arizona Nationals.
The sweltering Arizona heat made for a very tricky track this weekend, and likely, the worst conditions crew chiefs have seen all year. Cars were smoking their tires left and right, and there was a lot pedaling down the track. While Alexis, driver of the Tequila Patrόn car for the Kalitta Motorsports team, had her own set of issues during qualifying, including breaking the tires loose at the top end of the track a few times, she was able to pull it out and make it to the elimination round for the first time in the Funny Car ranks. Her best qualifying run was during round two where she ran 4.320-second at 274.27-mph, which put her comfortably in the number eight spot going into the first round.
Sunday’s elimination round was a big milestone for the Kalitta Motorsports driver, as it was her first time ever competing for the Funny Car trophy, and her first time being part of the pro driver introductions. “Just to race on Sunday was so huge,” said DeJoria “We didn’t just qualify; we qualified in the top half of the field. I’m so proud of our team and this race was definitely a step in the right direction.”
Alexis started out strong in the first round against Bob Tasca, but the car dropped the cylinders on both sides, costing her the round. Alexis’ Assistant Crew Chief radioed in and told her to lift off the throttle, in order to prevent more damage to the motor. Although Team Patrόn was out after the first round, Alexis and the team count this weekend as a success. They displayed improvement since their previous race in Dallas, and worked well together as a team. Alexis, who handled the track well despite the rough conditions, said “I like to have these sorts of curveballs. They provide for more lessons learned and only help to better prepare us for the future.”
The team was scheduled to test today, but because of the extreme track conditions opted to test in Las Vegas the Monday after the Vegas Nationals. Alexis DeJoria and the Kalitta Motorsports Tequila Patrόn Toyota Camry Funny Car team will compete next at the 11th annual Big O Tires NHRA Nationals in Las Vegas, NV, October 28th-30th. Before the weekend gets underway, Alexis will be signing autographs at the Fremont Street NHRA Driver Autograph Session on October 27th, 5PM-7PM.
On a separate note, Alexis and the Tequila Patrόn team would like to express their condolences for the loss of Dan Wheldon and Rick Huseman. On behalf of the entire team Alexis says, “Our prayers go out to their families and loved ones. It’s so hard to lose members of the racing community- we’re such a family, and to lose one of your own out there, it affects everyone very deeply.”