Minnesota native Jason Line won a race for an NHRA-record 16th straight season on Sunday, racing to the wire-to-wire victory at his home track during the 38th annual Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals at Brainerd International Raceway.
In other racing, it was a double-up victory for Don Schumacher Racing for the first time in 2019, as Leah Pritchett (Top Fuel) and Ron Capps (Funny Car) won in their respective categories at the 17th of 24 events on the 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series schedule.
Line, the No. 1 qualifier, used a run of 6.597-seconds at 209.10 mph in his Summit Racing Equipment Chevrolet Camaro to beat Erica Enders’ 6.604 at 207.59 in the final round. It is Line’s 49th career victory and first in 2019. It is his second career Brainerd win, but Sunday marked the first time he could celebrate at his home track, as his 2014 event win was completed in Indy after a rain delay.
Line knocked off Wally Stroupe, Alex Laughlin and Deric Kramer to reach the final round. Enders, the No. 2 qualifier, beat Shane Tucker, Chris McGaha and Seattle winner Matt Hartford to reach her 48th career final round, but Line edged her out to grab the memorable win in front of family and friends.
“This is very cool,” Line said. “As we get older, you realize these moments are going to be few and far between and less chance of them happening, so it’s very special. Right now it feels special, but it’s going be feel more special later on, for sure. It was just a great weekend and a fun day. We had a great car and you want to win here in front of your friends and family. To see them and see how happy they are, it’s super special. This place has been a big part of our lives.”
In Top Fuel, Pritchett picked up her first win of the season and eighth in her career thanks to a 3.732 at 321.04 in her MOPAR Dodge dragster, sending her past Mike Salinas in the final round. Pritchett, who earned her second career Brainerd win, knocked off Kyle Wurtzel, defending event winner Billy Torrence and Seattle winner Austin Prock to reach the final round.
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