The Alexis DeJoria Racing Team Looks to Pomona to Set the Tone for the 2012 Season
Venice, CA (November 9, 2011) – As the 2011 NHRA season comes to an end, Kalitta Motorsports’ driver Alexis DeJoria, and the Tequila Patrün Toyota Camry Funny Car team look to finish with a bang! In what will be their fourth race, the newly formed Nitro team hopes to finish out the year in Pomona leaving fans wanting more. In order to preserve Alexis’ rookie status for the 2012 season, their first full season, Team Patrün was only able to compete in four races this year, with Pomona being the fourth and final event.
While this is a huge event for all race teams, it is especially meaningful to Alexis. Born and raised in Los Angeles, Alexis counts Pomona as her ‘home track.’ Friends and family members will be out at the track in full force showing their support as the black and green stunner zips down the track, in what should be four solid qualifying rounds, putting her into Sunday’s eliminations.
“I’m looking forward to finishing the year strong,” said DeJoria. “I’m absolutely thrilled for this weekend! But of course, I’m crossing my fingers like everyone else that we don’t get rained out.”
Rain could be a factor this weekend, but according to Kalitta Motorsports’ VP of Operations and Alexis’ crew chief, Jim Oberhofer, the rain “looks like it’s clearing up and shouldn’t cancel the show. Ideally, the clouds will stick around, but the rain will hold out. The clouds keep the track at a much cooler temperature, so if we’re able to run with track temps between 75 and 85 degrees, that gives us the potential to lay down some good numbers,” adding, “We’re pretty happy with how the car ran in Vegas, and looking at the weather forecast, the potential to run much better in Pomona is there.”
Alexis ran her best numbers to date at a test session in Dallas earlier this year (4.12-seconds), but the team feels confident that they could blow those numbers away this weekend and their goal is to get her elapsed time under 4.10-sec. “We really didn’t change much since our last race. The only change will be the way we attack the tune up. We’ll be a little more aggressive with the way we run the clutch, but for the most part, we plan on running it pretty hard,” said Oberhofer.
Alexis, who has never sent a Nitro car down the Pomona track, is looking forward to doing so for the very first time. “I’ve raced my Alcohol car here plenty of times, but never Nitro. This is a great track, but every track is different and each one is a different learning experience for me. Here, it’s all about being on your toes. The shutdown area is the shortest on the entire circuit, plus it’s downhill, so you really need to be on your [para] ‘chutes in case something happens, so you have time to fix it or react.”
While this weekend is all about the points for many other teams, for Team Patrün, this weekend is about showing fans what’s to come in the 2012 season. “Of course next year I hope to be in the Countdown, but as for this year, I’m just so excited to be a part of it, although it would be pretty sweet to play the spoiler for the Championship!” said DeJoria. “Driving a Funny Car has long been a dream of mine, and it still feels so surreal that I’ll finally have the chance to run a Nitro car right here in Pomona, which is where I first fell in love with the sport back when I was a teenager.”
“At the end of the day, this race will be the last thing people remember over the winter, and it’s our last chance to prove ourselves and show people that we’re competitive.”