Erica Enders-Stevens drove to victory in Pro Stock Sunday in the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA SpringNationals, notching her second win of the season and the 99th by a woman in the history of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series.
Immediately following Enders-Stevens’ win, Antron Brown (Top Fuel) and Robert Hight (Funny Car) each raced down Royal Purple Raceway to secure their third victories of the season.
Enders-Stevens faced Allen Johnson in the Pro Stock final, winning on a holeshot with a 6.594-second pass at 210.60 mph. Johnson, the 2012 Pro Stock world champion, ran a 6.588 at 210.28. Even though Johnson ran the faster elapsed time, Enders-Stevens’ superior reaction time enabled her to keep her slim lead the whole race.
“My team’s been really awesome,” said Enders-Stevens, driver of the Elite Motorsports Chevy Camaro. “I’ve had a really consistent race car. That’s what it takes Sundays, consistency. We had to make last second transmission change and go through the gears to make sure everything was right.”
The win was Enders-Stevens’ eighth career victory and her first in Houston. Enders-Stevens, the current Pro Stock points leader and the only female in Pro Stock history to lead the points, has enjoyed her quick start to the season but knows that she must keep it up to remain atop the Pro Stock class.
“The ball’s in our court,” Enders-Stevens said. “We’ve got to carry the momentum. That’s important in this game, and I know I keep saying that, but it’s huge, and we’re going to keep carrying it as long as we can. Pro Stock really goes in cycles, so I’m really hoping this is our cycle, and we’re going to keep fighting for it.”
Johnson, the 2012 Pro Stock world champion, was the No. 1 qualifier at the event and reached his third final of the season. With two wins on the season at Phoenix and Gainesville, Johnson leaves Houston second in Pro Stock points.