Columbus: Scott Kalitta preview

NHRA's Scott Kalitta remains calm and collected heading to Columbus COLUMBUS, Ohio (May 16, 2006) -- From his Kalitta Motorsports teammates to his friends and peers at the race track, all have noticed that Kalitta Air Monte Carlo Funny Car...

NHRA's Scott Kalitta remains calm and collected heading to Columbus

COLUMBUS, Ohio (May 16, 2006) -- From his Kalitta Motorsports teammates to his friends and peers at the race track, all have noticed that Kalitta Air Monte Carlo Funny Car driver Scott Kalitta has a new attitude toward drag racing this year in the 2006 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series. His positive outlook has helped him and his nitro Funny Car team keep their lofty spirits even though they have struggled with everything from banging the wall a couple of times in pre-season testing to lackluster performances on the drag strips.

This weekend, May 18-21, as Kalitta and his team go to Columbus, Ohio, for the Pontiac Performance NHRA Nationals at National Trail Raceway, he remains upbeat and optimistic and ever-determined to get into the winner's circle at an NHRA national event and move into the top ten in POWERade championship points before the season ends.

"I'm still very happy we made the move to Funny Car this year," Kalitta, who raced in the NHRA's Top Fuel class last season, said. "I love the challenge, and it has certainly been that.

"Sure, I miss being more competitive like we were in the dragster, but it was time for me to change and take another direction in my career. I think as we keep getting better and better in the Funny Car, we'll look back on the struggles we've had at the beginning of this season and it'll just make us even stronger. My goals have changed a little bit, but I still think we can win a race or two and climb into the top ten before the season ends."

Kalitta won the annual Columbus event consecutively in 1994-95 in Top Fuel.

Scott, a 43-year old resident of Palmetto, Fla., and 25-year drag racing veteran, made the switch from Top Fuel to Funny Car this season. Scott has one NHRA national event win in his career in nitro Funny Car and that was at the Houston event in 1989 while driving with a broken left foot. In Top Fuel, Scott scored two world championships (1994-1995) and 17 NHRA national event wins.

The Pontiac Performance NHRA Nationals begins Friday, March 31, for the Funny Car class with two qualifying sessions at 5:30 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. (ET). Two more qualifying sessions follow on Saturday at 1:00 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. The top sixteen qualified cars will race Sunday in final eliminations beginning at 11:00 a.m.

All times and dates subject to change.

The Pontiac Performance NHRA Nationals is the 8th of 23 national events in the 2006 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series.

-km-

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Series NHRA
Drivers Scott Kalitta