Alexis DeJoria press release
Alexis DeJoria Debuts Tequila Patrόn Funny Car with Great Fanfare in Dallas
Ennis, TX September 24, 2011- NHRA Driver Alexis DeJoria made her long-awaited Nitro Funny Car debut this weekend at the 2011 Texas Fall Nationals, proudly racing her brand new Tequila Patrόn Toyota Camry Funny Car for the first time.
The weekend started off on a great note for the newest member of Kalitta Motorsports. Alexis kicked off her career on Friday afternoon. She was the first pair out the gate and had a good solid run, driving right down the middle of the track, resulting in a 4.281-second, 294.37-mph run. At the end of the first round, Alexis sat comfortably in the number eight spot.
With the support of friends and family by her side, Alexis and the team were feeling good going into the next round. She started off well off the line, but at about halfway through the run, the fuel line separated, causing an engine malfunction. A small burst of flames came from under the car and the engine went silent. The car suffered minor body damage, including a cracked windshield. She ran 4.310-sec at 238.38-mph, dropping her to the number fourteen spot at the end of the round.
Day two, and Alexis’ birthday, began with an air of celebration and anticipation. In the third qualifying round of the weekend, Alexis again looked to be good out the gate, but the car dropped a cylinder, pushing her over to the wall. The car smoked the tires at around 300 feet and Alexis shut the car off, resulting in a 5.349-sec at 137.50-mph lap, which put her at number sixteen- aka the ‘bump spot.’
The fourth qualifying run of the weekend was the last chance for Team Patrόn to advance to day three. She needed a 4.98 to qualify, but the Tequila Patrόn car lost traction. Knowing it was her last chance, Alexis tried to get the car down the track, pedaling it once, but the tires broke loose a second time and the car got out of shape. While she was forced to shut the car off, she did a good job managing it and keeping it in her lane. Although the weekend was cut short for Team Patrόn, Alexis leaves the track in high spirits.
“We’re a new team, and Alexis is a new driver. This weekend was all about getting more time under our belt,” Jim Oberhofer, crew chief, said. “I take full responsibility for the car and what happened, but we had some gremlins in the car bite us a couple of times this weekend and that certainly didn’t help. We’re testing on Monday which will help better prepare us for our next race.” He added, “I’m very proud of Alexis and how she drove the car. She did a great job throughout the entire weekend.”
“Overall, I was pleased with how my first race went, and really happy we have such a great group of people working with us. I thank my entire team for all their hard work this weekend and am looking forward to our next race,” said Alexis.
Alexis DeJoria and the Tequila Patrόn Toyota Camry Funny Car team will compete next at the NHRA Nationals in Phoenix, October 14-16th.