Before race day had even gotten underway at the NHRA Winternationals, Alexis DeJoria had already set off two win lights at In-N-Out Burger Pomona Dragstrip in Pomona, Calif.
The SoCal native started her weekend by posting a 3.883 E.T., which was the second-quickest pass of the first round, and held up to be the second-quickest elapsed time recorded during qualifying. On Saturday, DeJoria participated in the Funny Car vs. Top Fuel ‘Supra Showdown’ where she earned her first win light of the weekend, and the second win for the flopper drivers by defeating her opponent Justin Ashley, ensuring Team Funny Car has a 2-0 lead heading into the next showdown event in Las Vegas.
Next up for DeJoria was the Mission #2Fast2Tasty Challenge, which she qualified for by advancing to the semifinals at the NHRA Arizona Nationals the week prior. By defeating Ron Capps during round one of the specialty race, DeJoria collected her second win light of the day. On Sunday, she picked up win light No. 3 during the opening round of eliminations when she sent Jeff Arend to the trailer. Against her former teammate, DeJoria nabbed the starting line advantage and never trailed for the win to take her No. 2 qualified Bandero Premium Tequila Toyota GR Supra into a quarterfinal contest versus Matt Hagan. After powering to back-to-back semifinal finishes at the first two events of the 2023 NHRA Camping World Series season, DeJoria was looking to make it three in a row on Sunday, but her machine started dancing around as she approached the top end, and she was forced to click it off while Hagan made a clean pass for the win.
“Man, to go out in the second round is kind of tough,” said DeJoria, who was first introduced to NHRA Drag Racing when she came out to the Pomona facility with friends as a teenager. “We’ve had a good start to this season. Quick, consistent, semifinal finishes, won the inaugural Mission #2Fast2Tasty Challenge in Phoenix. We qualified second this weekend, made some good runs, and just lost in the second round. I love where our team is at right now. Our Bandero Supra is running good, it’s responding well; we’re just in the groove right now.”
In addition to her two semifinal finishes and #2Fast2Tasty Phoenix triumph, DeJoria has qualified in the No. 2 position for the past two events and has maintained a Top five ranking since the start of the year. The early season success through the first three events shows a lot of promise for the Del Worsham-led DC Motorsports Bandero GR Supra team, and DeJoria is enjoying riding the wave of momentum.
“Really excited about the next race,” she said. “I’ve been excited about every single race this year. I’m really looking forward to Vegas. I feel like this is our year, this is our time. We’ve put in a lot of effort, blood, sweat, and tears. Last year was rough. We had a lot of ups and downs and trial and error, but it seems to have all really paid off.”
DeJoria will begin the upcoming NHRA Four-Wide Nationals in Las Vegas ranked third in the standings. She returns to The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway as a two-time event champion.