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Funny Car’s Matt Hagan Has Sights Set on Win at NHRA Winternationals

Matt Hagan is more than ready to get his first win of the season. The four-time Funny Car world champion is also looking to get the first win in his Johnson’s Horsepowered Garage Dodge//SRT Hellcat Funny Car at the NHRA Winternationals at the In-N-Out Burger Pomona Dragstrip.

Currently sixth in the Funny Car standings and trailing the leader J.R. Todd by 59 points, Hagan is no stranger to the pressures of high-stakes racing. With a storied history that includes being the defending event winner, he brings a wealth of experience and a proven track record of success to Pomona.

Not only is he the defending event winner with four career wins at the Winternationals, but he also holds the current track record for elapsed time at Pomona, set in 2017. A victory at this event could place him among the legends of the sport as the 17th pro driver to achieve 50 tour victories.

“We’re coming off of Gainesville, where we thought we could have won three races in a row. But at the end of the day, we have to stay positive,” said Hagan. “We have a great team and a great tune-up with an awesome group of guys that are wrenching on the car. I feel confident that we will start the season strong. The Gatornationals were kind of a weird race for everyone, so you have to knock the dust off and keep moving forward. I’m looking forward to Pomona since we have such a good track history there. The car always runs pretty good, so I’m looking forward to seeing what we can do.”

He also highlighted the significance of winning for Johnson’s Horsepowered Garage, emphasizing the deep bond and familial ties that have been forged with Jason Johnson and the entire JHG team.

“To have Johnson’s Horsepowered Garage and Jason (Johnson) in Pomona is big,” he added. “I have yet to win for Jason with JHG on the car, so I’d really like to pull a win down. They’re really great people that have become family. If we can get a win, I want to get one for them very soon.”

This story was originally published on March 22, 2024. Drag Illustrated

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