Two-time and reigning Pro Stock champion Erica Enders will return to her Sportsman racing roots this season driving the ORTEQ Energy Technologies Super Gas car for Buddy Wood and Cody Ortowski at select races.
Enders earned her first NHRA national event victory in the Super Gas class in 2004 before moving into the professional ranks.
“ORTEQ has been a big part of our success with the Pro Stock car the last few years, and when Buddy and Cody asked if I wanted to drive their Super Gas car I jumped at the chance,” Enders said. “It’ll be great to get back to my Sportsman roots a little and to visit with and race all my friends that run Super Gas. I’m just going to have some fun with it. The car is good, it can win any race we enter, so I’ll do my best to put it in the winner’s circle.”
Wood is longtime friends with Elite Motorsports owner Richard Freeman, car owner of Enders’ Elite/Mopar Dodge Pro Stock Dart. The Wood Racing shop is 15 minutes from Elite’s headquarters in Wynnewood, Okla.
“It’s pretty awesome to have a driver of Erica’s caliber get behind the wheel of our car,” Wood said. “She’s a killer on the Christmas Tree, and we have no doubt she’ll be great in our car. It’ll be great to see what Erica can do.”
“We are ecstatic to have Erica drive our ORTEQ hot rod,” Ortowski said. “When I think about success, I think about character and execution. Erica displays both, week in and week out. We are proud to be aligned with the future of drag racing.”
Sportsman ace Tommy Phillips drove the same car to one national event and two divisional race victories in 2015.
“It won’t be easy; the Super Gas category is very tough and I’m sure my competition will be more than ready for me every race,” Enders said. “It’ll be no different than what we see every round in Pro Stock. You have to earn everything.”
Enders’ Super Gas schedule will be determined at a later date, though she’ll compete in eight to 10 national events in conjunction with her Pro Stock activities.
“My teammate, Jeg Coughlin Jr., has run two cars a number of times in the past, and he said it makes for a busier weekend for sure but that it also allows you a better chance to lock in on the Tree and make a bunch more passes, which keeps you in race mode,” Enders said. “By doubling up I’ll actually be cutting down on the distractions we all face at national events. I’ll be too busy.”