Thursday, May 23, 2024

NHRA Toyota Nationals Sportsman Preview

LAS VEGAS – The NHRA traveling road show rolls into Las Vegas this week for the NHRA Toyota Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.  Over 300 of the nation’s best NHRA sportsman racers will compete for points, monies, and the coveted NHRA Wally in five classes including Competition Eliminator, Super Stock, Stock Eliminator, Super Comp, and Super Gas.

The event kicks off on Thursday with three rounds of time trials for Super Comp and Super Gas, two qualifying shots for Competition Eliminator, Super Stock and Stock Eliminator, and finally class eliminations for Super Stock and Stock competitors.  Friday’s action will include one round of final eliminations.  Saturday will be a full day of racing action as each of the sportsman classes will run four rounds of eliminations.  Sunday’s schedule includes the semifinal and final rounds of each class.

Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series

The 2017 event winners include:

Greg Kamplain – Competition Eliminator

Ryan McClanahan – Super Stock

Justin Lamb – Stock Eliminator

Marko Perivolaris – Super Comp

Val Torres – Super Gas


With each national event DragChamp’s sportsman preview includes an overview of each class along with the now famous DragChamp Picks.  Beginning with the U.S. Nationals we have successfully picked at least one of the sportsman winners at each NHRA national event.  We look to extend our streak this week with the following picks.


Competition Eliminator – 25 Car Field

The top story in Comp Eliminator is David Rampy’s chase to 100 national event wins.  Currently sitting at 99 wins, Rampy has two races left to capture win number 100 this year.

Team DragChamp Pick to Win:

Jeff Lane – Jeff wins just about every Comp LODRS on the West Coast but has not has as much success at the national level.  I expect him to be a tough out this week.

Super Stock – 75 Car Field

While the Super Stock national championship will probably be decided at the LODRS race next weekend at Las Vegas, Tyler Bohannon will make the trip from Kentucky to take his shot at the national championship.  Tyler is 37 points behind current leader and defending national champion Justin Lamb and will need a semifinal finish to pass Lamb this weekend.

Team DragChamp Picks to Win:

Jimmy DeFrank – Former world champ has had a quiet year, look for him to make some noise this week.

Dan Fletcher – Fletch has won more in Vegas than most win in their career, should be a sure thing this week.

Jody Lang – A win this weekend could vault him into the championship picture and we know Lang can get it done at Vegas.

Stock Eliminator – 78 Car Field

Brian McClanahan comes into the event looking to improve a 3rd round loss.  If he can go the distance like he did in Dallas a few weeks back, he may be able to lock down the national championship and spare himself a lot of drama next weekend.

Team DragChamp Picks to Win:

Larry Gilley – The former U.S. Nationals champ is always a tough out at The Strip.

Justin Lamb – Not sure you can bet against Lamb this week as he has owned The Strip in recent years.

Brad Burton – The former world champ is due for another national event win.

Super Comp – 77 Car Field

The Super Comp national championship chase will be in full swing this weekend as a number of competitors will be on hand and looking to improve their current points totals.  Current points leader Don Nichols will be in attendance along with contenders Steve Williams, Ray Miller Jr., Mark Grame, and Robert Naber.  It should be an interesting weekend to watch the 8.90 crew do their thing.

On a side note, I have to give Nichols credit, he has racked up a gazillion miles recently as he continues to chase the championship.  It seems like he’s raced every weekend for the last few months.  He’s been to Minnesota, Texas, Missouri (twice), his home state of Kansas, and now Las Vegas.  We’ll know in the next few weeks if all of his traveling pays off.

Team DragChamp Picks to Win:

Bradley Johnson – Tough racer out of Division 5, had a great couple of weeks at Vegas earlier in the year, would like a repeat of that this weekend.

Ryan Herem – High Gear Herem is one of the best in the business, sure to make a splash this week.

Ray Connolly – Been quiet on the national level, due for a breakout weekend.

Super Gas – 75 Car Field

Aaron Kinard, Michael Miller, and Casey Plaizier will all try to chase down current points leader Devin Isenhower this weekend.  Kinard is replacing a first round loss so he could take the lead with a late round finish this week.  Like Super Comp, it should be fun to watch this weekend unless your Devin Isenhower who I’m sure will be watching intently from Indiana.

Team DragChamp Picks to Win:

Aaron Kinard – His only decent finish at the national level came earlier in the year at Vegas, could do the same this weekend.

Steve Collier – Big Steve started the year on fire until his Top Alcohol crash sidelined him for most of the season.

Michael Miller – It’s been a great year in Super Comp and Super Gas for Miller, should finish strong this weekend.

And that’s a wrap for the sportsman preview, visit DragChamp daily for the latest sportsman drag race results from the NHRA Toyota Nationals.  Dragchamp is your source for NHRA sportsman drag racing news and race results.

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