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Ron Capps Set to Make Memorable Start to Season at NHRA Gatornationals

As the NHRA Gatornationals get underway this weekend at the historic Gainesville Raceway, anticipation builds around Ron Capps, the driver of the NAPA Auto Care Toyota GR Supra. With an illustrious career that includes four Gatornationals victories (2006, 2007, 2015, 2020), two runner-up finishes, and two pole positions, Capps embarks on the 2024 season with a mix of seasoned expertise and renewed ambition.

The 2024 Gatornationals marks a significant moment for Capps, entering his third year as an NHRA team owner and eyeing a tie with racing legend Don Prudhomme for five Gainesville Funny Car wins. After clinching the pole in 2023 and setting a new speed record at the track in 2022, Capps and his Ron Capps Motorsports team are gearing up for another history-making year.

As the NHRA season opener, the Gatornationals offers a unique blend of pressure and prestige. “This is a race that you want to have on your resume,” said Capps, comparing the event’s historical gravity to that of the Indianapolis races. The 2024 event also welcomes Mission Foods as the new series sponsor, adding to the already palpable excitement and competition.

Under the guidance of crew chief Dean Antonelli, the NAPA Auto Care team has utilized the off-season to refine their strategy and equipment, including their new Toyota bodies. Following promising tests in Bradenton, Capps feels optimistic about the season ahead, acknowledging the increased level of competition. “There are quite a few more cars that have a legitimate shot at not only trophies on Sunday but championship runs,” he noted.

Fans can look forward to connecting with Capps during the Team Toyota autograph session and participating in the Darrell Gwynn “Track Walk for Those Who Can’t,” highlighting the event’s community and inspirational spirit.

This story was originally published on March 8, 2024. Drag Illustrated

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