David Latino doubles, Anthony Bertozzi makes two finals, Sandy Wilkins successfully defends his 2019 event title. NHRA Gatornationals Sportsman results.
All images courtesy of NHRA.tv
GAINESVILLE, Fl. – Although the NHRA postponed the Professional portion of the 2020 Gatornationals, the Lucas Oil Sportsman classes raced to completion on Friday. With the spectator gates closed, racers competed to empty stands but the race was live streamed on NHRA.tv for free.
David Latino was the star of the race as he collected wins in both Super Stock and Stock Eliminator. Anthony Bertozzi, whom Latino defeated in the Super Stock final, also made the final in Top Dragster. There he fell to Ross Laris to seal his second runner-up finish of the race. Sandy Wilkins claimed the Top Sportsman title for the second consecutive season after defeating Ron Riegel in the final.
Latino, Laris, and Anderson were joined in the winner’s circle by Brad Plourd (Comp), Ray Miller III (SC), and Jonathan Anderson (SG).
2020 NHRA Gatornationals Sportsman Final Round Results
Competition Eliminator – Brad Plourd
Bad Brad Plourd collected win #21 at the Gatornationals after turned back Wes Leopold Jr. in the Comp final. Wes grabbed a .03 holeshot off the line but his A/SMA Mopar couldn’t hold off Plourd’s potent AA/AM roadster. Plourd posted a -.574 under 6.346 to eclipse Leopold’s slower -.504 under 7.956 by .0374 at the stripe. The win was Plourd’s second national event Wally in the highly competitive Competition Eliminator class.
Super Stock – David Latino
When Anthony Bertozzi turned it red in the Super Stock final, David Latino became the 27th driver to double in NHRA national event competition. After winning his third national event Wally moments earlier, the Super Stock victory increased Latino’s win total to four. Prior to the final, Latino was wired to the tree with a best light of .004 and a worst of .021.
Stock Eliminator – David Latino
David Latino grabbed the first half of the double when reigning Comp world champ Frank Aragona turned it red in the Stock final. Aragona left -.021 too soon handing the win to Latino and his C/SA Corvette.
Super Comp – Ray Miller III
Just six weeks removed from being hospitalized with health concerns, 2019 Super Comp world champ Ray Miller III rolled through the Super Comp field to collect his eighth national event title. The champ battled Division 1 hitter Ken Moses in the final round. Miller was absolutely deadly laying down a .005-pack in the semifinals to dispose of Troy Williams Jr. and a .012-pack in the final against Moses. Moses was .029 at the tree in the loss.
Super Gas – Jonathan Anderson
Driving a borrowed car, Jonathan Anderson earned his first Super Gas title in Gainesville after stopping Greg Slack and his Maverick in the final. After leaving togther, .017 to .019, Anderson grabbed the brakes at the finish sending Slack across the stripe first. Slack posted a -.016 under 9.884 in the loss while Anderson’s 9.910 secured his fifth national event title.
Top Sportsman – Sandy Wilkins
In a battle of early model Camaro replicas, Sandy Wilkins defeated Ron Riegel to claim his fourth NHRA national event victory. Wilkins, the 2019 Top Sportsman World Champ, grabbed a .03-second advantage off the line and held on for the win. He posted a .011 over 6.741 in his ’69 Camaro to hold off the dead-on lap by Riegel’s ’68 Camaro, 6.962 on his 6.96 dial-in. The win was Wilkins’ second in a row at the Gatornationals as he also won the 2019 event.
Top Dragster – Ross Laris
A year after his son, Holden Laris, won Super Comp at the Gatornationals, Ross claimed his very own Gators Wally. The Laris Motorsports Insurance owner secured his third national event victory after stopping 2019 event champ Anthony Bertozzi in the final. Laris was .013 dead four in the final to shut out Bertozzi who was .029 and one under his dial. Ross was also our pre-race pick to win. To see all of our pre-race picks, click here.
Laris was also in the final the prior week at the Baby Gators. There he also posted a .017-pack in the final but came up short when his opponent laid down .010 total in the other lane.
For the fourth consecutive race, dating back to the 2019 Auto Club Finals, we successfully picked a winner! This week it was Ross Laris who carried the DragChamp flag to the winners circle.
Follow DragChamp for more on the 2020 NHRA Gatorationals. We’ll have full class-by-class results later this week.
DragChamp is your source for NHRA Lucas Oil sportsman news and drag race results.