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Camrie Caruso Races to Quaterfinals at U.S. Nationals

For second year Pro Stock driver Camrie Caruso the 69th NHRA Dodge Power Brokers U.S. Nationals was the conclusion of the NHRA regular season and a chance to build momentum heading into the NHRA Countdown. Through five rounds of qualifying Caruso and her Tequila Comisario Chevrolet Camaro posted consistently quick runs and moved into race day as the No. 9 qualifier.
“Qualifying was tough but we made consistent passes and got a lot of good info,” said Caruso, the 2022 NHRA Rookie of the Year. “Our first run on Friday night got us solidly in the field and then we just raced the track as it got warmer all weekend.”

Today, facing Cristian Cuadra in the first round Caruso was ready to take on the No. 8 qualifier. As both Pro Stock race cars executed their burnouts Caruso began to roll back to the starting line while Cuadra stopped on the track. As NHRA officials began to examine the track behind Cuadra’s race car it became apparent that his car was leaking oil and he was shut off. Caruso took a competition bye and posted a solid 6.630 second pass at 206.51 mph to move to the next round to face No. 1 qualifier Matt Hartford.
“You want to win every round at the U.S. Nationals and every national event, but I hate what happened to Cristian,” said Caruso. “We made a good run on the single and I was really feeling good. I knew it was getting hotter, but these KB Titan Racing and Tequila Comisario guys are doing a great job.”
In the quarterfinals Caruso was racing against the hottest driver on the property at the U.S. Nationals. In a close race she narrowly dropped the race to Hartford. Caruso’ 6.649 second pass was just slightly behind Hartford’s 6.643 second pass at 2-6.76 mph.

“We were right there with Matt in the second round,” said Caruso. “These last few races we have just been losing some close races but we are not going to hang our heads. We are in the Countdown and now there are six races for the championship. I have a lot of confidence moving forward.”
Caruso will head into the Countdown as the No. 9 seed and when the points reset she will be less than one race out of first place. Her first chance to make a move up the ladder will be in two weeks at Maple Grove Raceway, September 15-17.

This story was originally published on September 5, 2023. Drag Illustrated

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