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Enders, Torrence, Tasca and Oehler Win NHRA Four-Wide Nationals in Vegas

Back-to-back world champ Erica Enders went from nearly not qualifying to collecting her first victory of the 2021 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series season, grabbing the Pro Stock win on Sunday at the DENSO Spark Plugs NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

Steve Torrence (Top Fuel), Bob Tasca III (Funny Car) and Ryan Oehler (Pro Stock Motorcycle) also won in their respective categories at the second race of the 2021 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series season.

In her 300th career start, Enders, a four-time world champ, picked up her 30th career win by going 6.656-seconds at 205.88 mph in the final round in her Melling Performance/Elite Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro to beat teammate Aaron Stanfield, Deric Kramer and Mason McGaha. Enders, who won her second straight race at Las Vegas and eighth overall at the facility, slipped into the qualifying field at No. 13 on her last attempt on Saturday, becoming the first Pro Stock competitor to win from 13th since 2006. She stayed perfect over her last six final-round appearances and became the first driver to win a four-wide race from the bottom half of the field.

“I guess today is all about threes,” Enders said. “I really want to give a big thank you to my guys. It is frustrating to go out and shake your butt off (the first two qualifying) rounds. They got down to business today and that’s all that matters. I’m so proud of my team and I freaking love Las Vegas.”

Enders was second in both of the first two quads, using a holeshot to advance in the second round, before the final-round win. Stanfield won his second-round quad and went 6.667 at 205.26 in the finals to finish as runner-up.

In Top Fuel, Torrence capped off a memorable stretch with his fifth four-wide victory, going 3.823 at 321.73 in his 11,000-horsepower Capco Contractors dragster in the final round to beat Doug Kalitta, Clay Millican and Antron Brown. It gives Torrence his first victory of 2021 and 41st in his career. The win for Torrence, who has won three straight world titles, comes after celebrating the birth of his first child less than two weeks ago, his birthday on Saturday and his mother’s birthday on Sunday. After qualifying second, Torrence won his first two quads and cruised to the win in the final round against three standout drivers.

“There’s nothing better than being a dad, and happy birthday to my mom, and we had Dom Lagana standing on the starting line with me. There’s a lot of cool stuff that happened today,” Torrence said. “I’m taking my little girl home her very first Wally. We had to work hard to get it done today, but we got it done and I’m proud of it.”

Kalitta finished as the runner-up in the class, going 3.866 at 270.75 in his 106th career final round. He won his first quad and finished second to Torrence in the second round to advance to the finals.

Tasca III picked up his first Funny Car victory in nearly two years and his seventh overall thanks to a run of 3.938 at 328.46 in his 11,000-horsepower Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Mustang in the finals. In a loaded Funny Car final, Tasca outlasted defending world champ Matt Hagan, Tim Wilkerson and Ron Capps, narrowly slipping past Hagan at the finish line. Tasca also earned his first career four-wide win in the process, with it coming on the weekend where the Ford Mustang celebrated its 57th birthday.

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“It’s so special. My dad hasn’t been out here in a long time and it’s great to have him out here,” Tasca said. “Happy birthday to Mustang, and I’m so privileged to be able to drive the quickest and fastest Mustang on the planet, so thank you to Ford.”

Hagan went 3.955 at 324.98 to finish as the runner-up. He was second in the first-round quad and won his second-round quad to move to his 66th final. Wilkerson’s 3.922 at 320.43 was the quickest run of the final round, but Tasca and Hagan were both quicker on the starting line.

Oehler was in a celebratory mood after earning his second career Pro Stock Motorcycle victory on his Flyin’ Ryan Racing EBR, going 6.911 at 194.83 in the final round to beat Cory Reed, Steve Johnson and a red-lighting Scotty Pollacheck. He overcame significant adversity throughout the weekend to gain his first four-wide victory, winning his first-round quad and finishing second a round later to Johnson to move to the final round. Oehler, who earned his first career win last season, was impressive in the final round, posting a great reaction time and picking up the strong wire-to-wire win.

“We started the weekend off in the sand at the end of the track and round one, we basically ruined the engine,” Oehler said. “We changed motors and made a rapid turnaround, and I can’t thank my family, my team, my crew and my sponsors enough. This is awesome. We got our second Wally and there’s going to be more.”

Reed finished as the runner-up after going 6.948 at 193.10, advancing to his second career final round. He took second in all three quads on Sunday.

The NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series returns to action April 30-May 2 with the Lucas Oil NHRA Southern Nationals at Atlanta Dragway, marking the final event at the facility.

LAS VEGAS — Final finish order (1-16) for professional categories at the 21st annual DENSO Spark Plug NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The race is the second of 22 events in the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series.

1. Steve Torrence; 2. Doug Kalitta; 3. Clay Millican; 4. Antron Brown; 5. Brittany Force; 6. Shawn Langdon; 7. Leah Pruett; 8. Billy Torrence; 9. Troy Buff; 10. Justin Ashley; 11. Greg Carrillo; 12. Jim Maroney; 13. Cameron Ferre; 14. Rob Passey; 15. Todd Paton.

1. Bob Tasca III; 2. Matt Hagan; 3. Tim Wilkerson; 4. Ron Capps; 5. Robert Hight; 6. John Force; 7. J.R. Todd; 8. Alexis DeJoria; 9. Blake Alexander; 10. Bobby Bode; 11. Terry Haddock; 12. Cruz Pedregon; 13. Chris Morel; 14. Jim Campbell; 15. Jonnie Lindberg; 16. Chad Green.

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1. Erica Enders; 2. Aaron Stanfield; 3. Deric Kramer; 4. Mason McGaha; 5. Greg Anderson; 6. Kyle Koretsky; 7. Dallas Glenn; 8. Chris McGaha; 9. Troy Coughlin Jr.; 10. Matt Hartford; 11. Aaron Strong; 12. Val Smeland; 13. Alex Laughlin; 14. Kenny Delco; 15. Cristian Cuadra; 16. Fernando Cuadra.

1. Ryan Oehler; 2. Cory Reed; 3. Steve Johnson; 4. Scotty Pollacheck; 5. Chip Ellis; 6. Angelle Sampey; 7. Angie Smith; 8. Matt Smith; 9. Karen Stoffer; 10. Jerry Savoie; 11. Freddie Camarena; 12. Kelly Clontz; 13. David Barron.

LAS VEGAS — Sunday’s final results from the 21st annual DENSO Spark Plug NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The race is the second of 22 in the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series:

Top Fuel — Steve Torrence, 3.823 seconds, 321.73 mph def. Doug Kalitta, 3.866 seconds, 270.75 mph and Clay Millican, 3.914 seconds, 290.88 mph and Antron Brown, 4.728 seconds, 157.83 mph;

Funny Car — Bob Tasca III, Ford Mustang, 3.938, 328.46 def. Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger, 3.955, 324.98 and Tim Wilkerson, Mustang, 3.922, 320.43 and Ron Capps, Charger, 3.978, 316.75;

Pro Stock — Erica Enders, Chevy Camaro, 6.656, 205.88 def. Aaron Stanfield, Camaro, 6.667, 205.26 and Deric Kramer, Camaro, 6.659, 205.57 and Mason McGaha, Camaro, foul;

Pro Stock Motorcycle — Ryan Oehler, EBR, 6.911, 194.83 def. Cory Reed, Suzuki, 6.948, 193.10 and Steve Johnson, Suzuki, broke and Scotty Pollacheck, EBR, foul;

Top Alcohol Funny Car — Doug Gordon, Chevy Camaro, 6.352, 242.50 def. Kris Hool, Camaro, 6.839, 162.24 and Sean Bellemeur, Camaro, 10.056, 88.48 and Nick Januik, Camaro, broke;

Top Alcohol Dragster — Shawn Cowie, 5.218, 276.86 def. Jackie Fricke, 5.229, 275.28 and Julie Nataas, 5.263, 273.22 and Casey Grisel, 5.297, 270.10;

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Competition Eliminator — Joe Mozeris, Dragster, 7.031, 181.23 def. John Edwards, Camaro, 7.462, 183.12.

Super Stock — Brad Rounds, Chevy Cobalt, 9.355, 126.67 def. Jimmy DeFrank, Cobalt, 10.029, 140.78.

Stock Eliminator — Conner Statler, Chevy Camaro, 10.754, 104.11 def. Greg Stanfield, Camaro, Foul – Red Light.

Super Comp — Michael Miller, Dragster, 11.420, 112.29 def. Jack DeRencin, Dragster, Foul – Red Light.

Super Gas — Craig Maddox, Prowler, 10.061, 163.00 def. Marko Perivolaris, Chevy Camaro, 10.095, 166.87.

Top Dragster presented by Vortech Superchargers — Ryan Carlson, Dragster, 6.313, 203.43 def. Thomas Bayer, Dragster, 6.927, 188.75.

Top Sportsman presented by Vortech Superchargers — Jeff Connelly, Chevy Camaro, 6.192, 231.20 def. Paul Mitsos, Dodge Stratus, 6.724, 204.57.

LAS VEGAS — Final round-by-round results from the 21st annual DENSO Spark Plug NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, the second of 22 events in the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series:


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ROUND ONE — Clay Millican, 3.758, 326.16 and Billy Torrence, 3.765, 330.47 def. Jim Maroney, 4.201, 223.17 and Todd Paton, broke; Doug Kalitta, 3.751, 314.39 and Shawn Langdon, 3.756, 320.89 def. Troy Buff, 3.839, 284.99 and Rob Passey, 5.236, 131.29; Brittany Force, 3.722, 330.80 and Antron Brown, 3.827, 313.15 def. Justin Ashley, 3.899, 268.22 and Steve Torrence, 3.756, 325.14 and Leah Pruett, 3.808, 315.27 def. Greg Carrillo, 4.107, 223.21 and Cameron Ferre, 4.143, 225.97;
SEMIFINALS — S. Torrence, 3.773, 322.04 and Kalitta, 3.768, 325.22 def. Langdon, 8.558, 88.61 and Pruett, 10.921, 55.03; Brown, 3.761, 316.23 and Millican, 3.816, 320.13 def. Force, 3.815, 315.27 and B. Torrence, broke;
FINAL — S. Torrence, 3.823, 321.73 def. Kalitta, 3.866, 270.75, Millican, 3.914, 290.88 and Brown, 4.728, 157.83.


ROUND ONE — John Force, Chevy Camaro, 3.925, 332.02 and Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger, 3.932, 329.42 def. Blake Alexander, Ford Mustang, 3.958, 320.97 and Chris Morel, Charger, 4.200, 294.24; J.R. Todd, Toyota Camry, 3.955, 319.37 and Robert Hight, Camaro, 3.980, 311.34 def. Cruz Pedregon, Charger, 4.285, 283.85 and Jonnie Lindberg, Mustang, 7.263, 91.03; Tim Wilkerson, Mustang, 3.919, 327.19 and Alexis DeJoria, Camry, 3.950, 321.73 def. Terry Haddock, Mustang, 4.069, 309.42 and Chad Green, Mustang, broke; Bob Tasca III, Mustang, 3.917, 329.18 and Ron Capps, Charger, 3.932, 316.38 def. Bobby Bode, Mustang, 3.993, 313.66 and Jim Campbell, Charger, 5.899, 114.18;
SEMIFINALS — Hagan, 3.927, 325.06 and Wilkerson, 3.947, 325.14 def. Force, 4.049, 304.60 and DeJoria, 4.257, 220.30; Capps, 3.935, 321.50 and Tasca III, 3.934, 331.77 def. Hight, 3.951, 318.24 and Todd, 3.983, 319.29;
FINAL — Tasca III, 3.938, 328.46 def. Hagan, 3.955, 324.98, Wilkerson, 3.922, 320.43 and Capps, 3.978, 316.75.


ROUND ONE — Dallas Glenn, Chevy Camaro, 6.658, 204.85 and Erica Enders, Camaro, 6.661, 205.60 def. Troy Coughlin Jr., Camaro, 6.646, 205.10 and Kenny Delco, Camaro, 6.684, 204.98; Chris McGaha, Camaro, 6.685, 205.41 and Kyle Koretsky, Camaro, 6.660, 205.57 def. Aaron Strong, Camaro, 6.672, 205.10 and Alex Laughlin, Camaro, 6.676, 204.85; Mason McGaha, Camaro, 6.693, 204.76 and Deric Kramer, Camaro, 6.676, 205.00 def. Matt Hartford, Camaro, 6.659, 204.63 and Cristian Cuadra, Ford Mustang, 6.725, 204.60; Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.632, 205.72 and Aaron Stanfield, Camaro, 6.652, 204.98 def. Val Smeland, Camaro, 6.690, 204.70 and Fernando Cuadra, Mustang, 7.211, 151.97;
SEMIFINALS — Kramer, 6.660, 205.26 and M. McGaha, 6.718, 203.09 def. Koretsky, 6.692, 205.57 and C. McGaha, 6.726, 204.29; Stanfield, 6.663, 205.22 and Enders, 6.659, 205.44 def. Anderson, 6.655, 205.44 and Glenn, 6.683, 204.82;
FINAL — Enders, 6.656, 205.88 def. Stanfield, 6.667, 205.26, Kramer, 6.659, 205.57 and M. McGaha, foul.


ROUND ONE — Scotty Pollacheck, EBR, 6.920, 194.10 and Angelle Sampey, Suzuki, 6.889, 192.22 def. Jerry Savoie, Suzuki, 7.071, 189.73 and David Barron, EBR, broke; Ryan Oehler, EBR, 6.971, 193.68 and Angie Smith, EBR, 6.944, 195.76 def. Kelly Clontz, Suzuki, 7.219, 186.72 and Chip Ellis, Harley V-Rod, 6.952, 192.96 and Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 6.938, 191.87 def. Freddie Camarena, Suzuki GSXR, 7.156, 187.83 and Matt Smith, EBR, 6.888, 196.87 and Cory Reed, 6.985, 192.17 def. Karen Stoffer, 6.924, 192.82;
SEMIFINALS — Johnson, 6.931, 191.62 and Oehler, 6.984, 192.69 def. Ellis, 7.063, 191.00 and A. Smith, 7.196, 189.12; Pollacheck, 6.936, 193.27 and Reed, 6.972, 191.70 def. Sampey, 7.077, 162.68 and M. Smith, 7.722, 128.29;
FINAL — Oehler, 6.911, 194.83 def. Reed, 6.948, 193.10, Johnson, broke and Pollacheck, foul.

LAS VEGAS — Point standings (top 10) for NHRA professional categories following the 21st annual DENSO Spark Plug NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, the second of 22 events in the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series –

Top Fuel

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1. Steve Torrence, 184; 2. Shawn Langdon, 149; 3. Antron Brown, 145; 4. Doug Kalitta, 128; 5. Billy Torrence, 118; 6. Josh Hart, 113; 7. (tie) Clay Millican, 105; Leah Pruett, 105; 9. Justin Ashley, 104; 10. Brittany Force, 99.

Funny Car

1. Bob Tasca III, 187; 2. J.R. Todd, 166; 3. Robert Hight, 152; 4. Ron Capps, 139; 5. (tie) Matt Hagan, 129; Tim Wilkerson, 129; 7. John Force, 118; 8. Alexis DeJoria, 117; 9. Cruz Pedregon, 106; 10. Chad Green, 66.

Pro Stock

1. Greg Anderson, 188; 2. Erica Enders, 155; 3. Deric Kramer, 150; 4. Mason McGaha, 145; 5. Troy Coughlin Jr., 128; 6. Aaron Stanfield, 127; 7. Kyle Koretsky, 114; 8. Matt Hartford, 98; 9. Chris McGaha, 87; 10. Dallas Glenn, 84.

Pro Stock Motorcycle

1. Ryan Oehler, 209; 2. Matt Smith, 183; 3. Steve Johnson, 152; 4. Scotty Pollacheck, 151; 5. (tie) Cory Reed, 124; Angelle Sampey, 124; 7. Angie Smith, 91; 8. Karen Stoffer, 88; 9. Kelly Clontz, 64; 10. Jerry Savoie, 63.

This story was originally published on April 18, 2021. Drag Illustrated

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