JOLIET, Illinois – Like fine wine, Greg Anderson just seems to keep getting better with age.
The 55-year-old former four-time NHRA Pro Stock champion powered to his sixth win of the season in Sunday’s K&N Filters Route 66 NHRA Nationals at Route 66 Raceway.
Anderson (6.644 seconds at 209.01 mph) defeated teammate Bo Butner (6.667/209.17). Anderson now trails fellow teammate and points leader Jason Line by 80 points.
“We basically out raced them today and we just flat found a way to win each round,” Anderson said. “That’s what it’s all about.
“I couldn’t be more proud of the guys. It is certainly our hardest-fought win of the season. I am looking forward to the battle that’s coming. This Western Swing (Denver, Seattle and Sonoma, which starts in two weeks) should be a real battle.”
There were a number of upsets throughout the first three rounds, including:
* Two-time defending Pro Stock champ Erica Enders continues to struggle this season. Enders (6.686 seconds at 208.36 mph) lost in the first round to Vincent Nobile (6.643/208.55). Nobile (6.658/208.30) then lost in the quarterfinals to Shane Gray (6.622/209.72).
* In turn, Gray (21.336/36.96) lost to Anderson (6.631/209.14) in the semifinals.
* Drew Skillman (6.644/208.52) lost in the first round to former five-time Pro Stock champ Jeg Coughlin Jr. (6.641/208.23). In turn, Coughlin (6.663/207.85) lost in the quarterfinals to Jason Line (6.615/209.62).
* In one of the biggest upsets leading up to the final round, Butner (6.631/209.23) handed Jason Line (6.616/209.56) only his second defeat of the season in the semifinals.
The NHRA enjoys next weekend off before returning to action July 22-24 with the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals at Bandimere Speedway near Denver, Colorado.
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In Pro Stock Motorcycle, it was defending series champion Andrew Hines (6.858 seconds at 194.91 mph) who took his second win of 2016, defeating Angelle Sampey (6.893/193.40) in the final round.
“We had a good motorcycle all weekend, it was just a matter of making the straight, consistent runs that we needed to,” Hines said of his third career Route 66 win. “That’s what allows you to go out there and turn on four win lights.
“I’ve always loved this track and I always seem to excel at the hot racetracks. You have to be on top of your tune-up these days and you can’t cut anyone any slack.”
Among key races during the first three elimination rounds:
* Karen Stoffer (6.895 seconds at 194.77 mph) defeated Jerry Savoie (6.851/195.65) in the first round.
* Stoffer (7.173/161.48), in turn, lost in the quarterfinals to Steve Johnson (6.905/192.93).
* Johnson (8.320/108.61), in turn, fell to Hines (6.877/194.35) in the semifinals.
* Hector Arana (6.882 seconds at 194.97 mph) defeated son Hector Arana Jr. (6.886/193.82) in the first round.
* Eddie Krawiec (6.856/184.14) fell to Sampey (7.022/191.05) in the semifinals.
The NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series continues July 22-24 with the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals at Bandimere Speedway near Denver.