The Gatornationals will conclude a swift start to the 2022 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series schedule with this weekend’s NHRA Gatornationals at Gainesville Raceway. Over the course of three of the last four weekends Shawn Langdon and his DHL Kalitta Air Top Fuel team have tested in Phoenix and raced in the first two national events of the season. Langdon will switch liveries this weekend and race a new look CMR Construction & Roofing Top Fuel dragster to kick-off a six-race primary sponsorship relationship with the award-winning national roofing company. Back-to-back races may bother some competitors, but Langdon sees the constant seat time as an advantage to start the season,
“The beginning of the season is tough. You have had two months off and then you make a couple laps in testing and then you go to Pomona,” said Langdon. “Fortunately, this year we went to testing then right to Pomona and then right to Phoenix. I really like the summer months when you are racing almost every weekend. For me as a driver I feel like I am at my best when I am driving week after week. I like getting four weekends at the track in five weeks to start this season. I am feeling really confident.”
That confidence will be on display after he raced to the quarterfinals at the Arizona Nationals and returns to a race where he opened the 2021 season with a runner-up finish. It was the 2013 Top Fuel world champion’s best finish at the Gatornationals and the search for one more win light will begin on Friday with the first round of qualifying.
“It would be awesome to get a win with CMR Construction & Roofing on my dragster since this would be their first race of 2022 as the primary. They are going to be primary for six races so getting off to a strong start would be great. They are going to have a lot of guests at the track over the weekend and it would be great to wind up in the winner’s circle with all of them.”
CMR roofing is also leveraging Kalitta Motorsports VIP Pit-Side hospitality experience to entertain some of their largest customers including West Gate Resorts with members of their senior executive team. Fans will also see West Gate Resorts brand participating as an associate sponsor on Shawn Langdon’s CMR Roofing Top Fuel dragster this weekend.
“We know that West Gate Resorts who are based in Orlando have some avid drag racing fans so what would be better, to come out and see the CMR/West Gate Resorts Top Fuel dragster compete for the win this weekend in Gainesville,” said Steve Soule.
Success on the track is right around the corner as the CMR Construction & Roofing Top Fuel dragster has been making improved runs every time down the track for almost a month. Over the off-season Kalitta Motorsports brought veteran tuner Jason McCulloch onboard to work with Connie Kalitta and Kurt Elliott on Langdon’s race car. The trio of Top Fuel experts led by drag racing legend Kalitta are making positive adjustments every run.
“The car has been running really well through testing, Pomona and Phoenix,” said Langdon. “We had a couple runs where we had some racing gremlins. Those are the kind of things that sometimes happen early in the season when you have a lot of new things going on. We have worked through that very well. Jason McCulloch is a huge addition to our team to work with Connie and Kurt of course. He brings a wealth of knowledge to our team. It has paid big dividends so far this year and we have already made some of our quickest runs over the last couple of years in the first two races.”
Langdon will not only be racing for his first Gatornationals victory, but he will be competing in the inaugural Pep Boys Allstar Callout $130,000 specialty race on Saturday. Eight of the best Top Fuel drivers in the world will be competing for $80,000 first place check. Langdon has experience winning specialty races when he won 2013 Traxxas Top Fuel Nitro Shootout on the way to his first Top Fuel world championship.