Old Bridge Township Raceway Park
Matt Hagan Collects Semifinal-Round Finish At NHRA Supernationals
Matt Hagan directed the DieHard Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car to the semifinals here Sunday in the NHRA SuperNationals at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park.
The Christiansburg, Va. cattle farmer was beaten by Cruz Pedregon in the semis after his car began to lose traction right before half-track. Pedregon posted a 4.111-second pass at 284.62 mph to Hagan’s 4.314-second clocking at 257.43 mph.
“It’s tough to swallow that loss,” said the 2010 NHRA Full Throttle Funny Car championship runner-up. “Cruz had a hell of a race car and we tried to step it up, but our car got loose and I had to “pedal” it. You have to do that because it is race day and you just never know what can happen. You have to go for the win.”
It was Hagan’s first semifinal round advancement since the March Gainesville, Fla. race. Ironically enough, it was Cruz Pedregon who disposed of Hagan at that time.
“This was a good outing for us, but we’d like to be running for the money,” said Hagan. “Getting to final rounds with the chance to win is what it’s all about. We’ll get there.”
Hagan’s trip to his meeting with Pedregon included wins over defending world champion, John Force, and Melanie Troxel.
“Getting by John Force was huge,” he offered. “He’s behind us in the standings and we wanted to maintain that advantage. Overall, it was a good weekend and the DieHard car made some improvements from where we’d been. We went some rounds, so we’re definitely making progress.”
Hagan, who is fifth in the points, will now have a weekend off before making trips to Bristol (Tenn.) Dragway (June 17-19) and Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio (June 23-26), respectively.
“Obviously, I’m looking forward to Bristol since it’s near where I live,” he said. “I’m sure I’ll have plenty of family and friends there to cheer us on.”