Las Vegas II: Jason Line preview

Line trying to clinch NHRA POWERade PS championship LAS VEGAS (October 24, 2006) -- Jason Line, driver of the KB Racing LLC-owned, Summit Racing Equipment-backed Pontiac GTO, could lock up the 2006 NHRA POWERade Pro Stock Championship at the...

Line trying to clinch NHRA POWERade PS championship

LAS VEGAS (October 24, 2006) -- Jason Line, driver of the KB Racing LLC-owned, Summit Racing Equipment-backed Pontiac GTO, could lock up the 2006 NHRA POWERade Pro Stock Championship at the NHRA ACDelco Las Vegas Nationals this weekend.

Line, who leads the NHRA POWERade Pro Stock point standing by 119 points, needs only to maintain his point lead during qualifying and then go one round further than teammate -- three-time and reigning NHRA POWERade champion Greg Anderson -- during eliminations to officially clinch the championship. If Line leaves the ACDelco Las Vegas Nationals with an advantage of 139 points or better, there is no way that Anderson can catch Line.

"We'll just go out and do what we've been doing all season," said Line, as he looked forward to once again visiting The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. "The points always take care of themselves. Do I want to win the POWERade championship? Yes! But the cool thing is that this is the fourth year in a row that the POWERade championship trophy has come home to KB Racing.

"KB Racing is a hard working team with great chemistry and we're already looking to next year. If everything goes right for me this year then next season I'll go after my second (championship) and Greg (Anderson) will be after his fourth. Because of the team that we have behind us, I know we'll be right there in the mix next year."

Anderson feels that with both he and Line in contention for the title, it is good for KB Racing and their sponsors. "If it happens that I don't leave the door opening enough for me to have an opportunity at (the final race) Pomona or Jason should clinch at Vegas, then I'll be happy for Jason," reflected Anderson as the KB Racing team headed for Las Vegas. "The main thing is that the championship will reside with KB Racing, Summit Racing Equipment, and Pontiac for the fourth straight year. That's a win-win situation."

Before joining KB Racing LLC and teammate Greg Anderson, Line had a diverse background in motorsports, coming up through the ranks as the saying goes. For as long as he can remember, Line knew that "he always wanted to be a drag racer."

Line, like his teammate, is a native of Minnesota, but that's where the climb to the seat of a winning Pro Stock car differed. Line started his racing career in 1985 as a bracket racer, racing at Brainerd (MN) International Raceway in a '68 Chevy Chevelle.

After a timeout for military service (U.S. Air Force) from 1987-1991, Line resumed his racing career in 1992 behind the wheel of his 1966 Chevrolet Belair R/Stock Automatic Station Wagon. He won his first NHRA Stock Eliminator national event at Brainerd that year.

Near the start of the new millennium, Line headed to North Carolina where he worked five years at Joe Gibbs Racing working as the chief dynamometer (dyno) engine specialist and was a part of that organization's two NASCAR Winston Cup championships with Bobby Labonte in 2000 and Tony Stewart in 2002.

Following a chance meeting with Anderson, Line moved to KB Racing LLC as an engine tuner on Anderson's car in 2003. But later that year when he had the opportunity to drive a second Pro Stock car for KB Racing LLC, he quickly got behind the wheel probably never thinking that one day he might win a NHRA POWERade Pro Stock Championship.

"I had hoped to be here, but to be honest, I didn't think there was a chance that I would be in Pro Stock competing at this level," said Line. "I was trying to get my Stocker going again, and was kind of getting back into it because I'd been out of it for awhile, and I missed it. To me, drag racing is one of those things that if you can't do it, you don't even want to be around it, you don't even want to see it. Until I met Greg (Anderson) I wanted no part of it, but after that, it kind of changed everything."

After running four races in 2003, in 2004 Line finished runner-up in the first two final rounds of his career to his teammate Anderson, before retuning the favor in the final round at the spring Chicago race by taking the win light over Anderson. In all, Line went to eight final rounds, winning four and earned two top qualifying spots. He finished second in POWERade points. His efforts were rewarded when he was named the recipient of the Auto Club of Southern California Road to the Future award, emblematic of being the top professional NHRA rookie of the year.

Line continued the pace he established in 2004 throughout 2005, winning four events in seven final rounds, posting two more No.1 qualifying positions and finishing runner-up at the King Demon Crown bonus event for top Pro Stock qualifiers. Line ended the year No. 3 in the final Pro Stock point standings.

But the crowning achievement has come about in 2006, as the former 1993 NHRA Stock Eliminator World Champion looks to add another championship. Entering the NHRA ACDelco Las Vegas Nationals this weekend, Line has gone to seven final rounds, winning a class-high four and has earned an additional five No 1s. Line has held the top position in points since the Denver race.

-credit: kb racing

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Bobby Labonte , Tony Stewart , Greg Anderson , Jason Line
Teams Joe Gibbs Racing