'The women in NHRA are very powerful,' she says
The Kalitta Motorsports Patrón XO Cafe Toyota Camry Funny Car team is headed south for the seventh race of the 2014 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series. All eyes will be on Atlanta Dragway this weekend as the chase for the title of ‘100th Female Win’ continues. With 99 ‘wins by women’ in the books, No. 3 ranked Funny Car pilot Alexis DeJoria is hoping she can claim that piece in NHRA history when she competes for the Wally at the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals, May 16-18 in Commerce, Ga.
DeJoria is no stranger to making NHRA history having recently earned the title of ‘first woman to make a sub-four second Funny Car pass’ (Pomona, February 2014). Just six races into the 2014 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing series, and DeJoria is riding high with three trips to the final round, powering her Patrón XO Cafe Toyota Camry Funny Car to victory at two of them (Phoenix, February; Vegas, March). She hopes to pick up her third career Funny Car win this weekend, and claiming the title of ‘100th Female Win’ would make the moment that much sweeter.
“Having 100 female wins is very impressive for our sport- especially when you compare it to other forms of motorsports that have very few [female wins] or none at all,” said DeJoria, a nine year NHRA competitor who can also add ‘only driver to have won in Funny Car, Top Alcohol Funny Car, and Super Comp’ to her impressive racing résumé. “The women in NHRA are very powerful. We win a lot of races out here, and I feel honored to have two wins on that list.”
“There are more women racing in NHRA than any other form of motorsports. Shirley Muldowney opened the door for all of us and proved that once you put that helmet on, and you’re strapped into your car; whether you’re male or female, none of that matters- we’re all equal out here. My goal has never been to be the ‘fastest or quickest female Funny Car driver,’ rather I want to be known as a ‘successful Funny Car driver,’ period. That being said, getting the 100th female win would be a huge accomplishment, and I would be honored to claim that place in NHRA history. There are seven women registered amongst the four pro classes this weekend, so there’s a very good chance that the 100th win could happen at Atlanta Dragway. Tommy [DeLago], Glen [Huszar], and the guys have had this Patrón XO Cafe Toyota Camry running well all season. Hopefully we’ll put this hot rod back in the Winner’s Circle this weekend, and grab the coveted title of ‘100th female win’ while we’re at it.”