Monday, July 22, 2024

2020 NHRA Winternationals Sportsman Preview

2020 Lucas Oil NHRA Winternationals Sportsman Preview. Find all the latest sportsman racing news from the upcoming Winternationals.

POMONA – Just a few months removed from the final race of the 2019 season, the 24-race 2020 NHRA tour hits the road again Feb 6-9 at Pomona Raceway.

The Lucas Oil NHRA Winternationals will showcase over 330 Lucas Oil sportsman racers competing in eight different classes. The schedule includes Competition Eliminator, Super Stock, Stock Eliminator, Super Comp, Super Gas, Super Street, Top Sportsman, and Top Dragster.

The four-day schedule has the sportsman classes making two hits on Thursday. Friday is race-day as Super Stock, Stock, and the Super Classes hit the track Friday morning for first round of eliminations. Comp, Top Sportsman, and Top Dragster will wrap up their third round of qualifying before turning the track over to the professional classes.

Saturday mornings race schedule includes a full dose of Lucas Oil Sportsman racers as all classes are scheduled for two rounds of eliminations. The remaining rounds of eliminations will run to completion on Sunday.

Before we look ahead to the 2020 Winternationals, let’s look back at last season’s champions.

Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series

2019 NHRA Winternationals Champions

Competition Eliminator – Scott McClay

Super Stock – Ryan McClanahan

Stock Eliminator – Doug Gibson

Super Comp – Kevin Wright

Super Gas – Pete Zak

Top Sportsman – Bart Smith

Top Dragster – John Taylor Jr.


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2020 Lucas Oil NHRA Winternationals Predictions

With each NHRA national event DragChamp’s sportsman preview includes an overview of each class. In addition, we select the DragChamp Picks to win the race. Here are this week’s picks.

Competition Eliminator – 16 Car Field

Ryan Warter pic by robert grice
Ryan Warter photo by Robert Grice

The sixteen-car field includes class favorites Tony Mandella, Ryan Warter, and Ralph Van Paepeghem. Also entered in the field is Stock Eliminator and bracket ace Tibor Kadar. It will be interesting to see how Tibor adjusts to the complicated class.

DragChamp pick to win:

Doug Lambeck – Would love to make it two-in-a-row after stopping David Rampy in the season-ending World Finals.

Super Stock – 52 Car Field

Kyle Rizzoli Northwest Nationals
Kyle Rizzoli

Dan Fletcher returns to Pomona looking to avenge his final round loss at the 2019 Finals. Justin Lamb rolls into Pomona with a new paint job, Kyle Rizzoli looks to build on an incredible 2019 season, and Jimmy DeFrank looks to return to championship form in 2020.

DragChamp picks to win:

Cody Lane – Had a big year in 2019, would love to carry the momentum into the new season.

Jimmy DeFrank – Not sure you could call 2019 an off year for Jimmy but I’m sure he’ll be hungry for more starting this weekend.

Mike Cotten – The talented Mopar racer has a tendency of making rounds at Pomona.

Stock Eliminator – 58 Car Field

Pomona- Jeff Taylor 2
Jeff Taylor

The largest class at the Winternationals is loaded with talent. Jody Lang, Justin Lamb, Jeff Taylor, Randi Lyn Shipp, Brad Burton, and more will chase the Stock Eliminator Wally this weekend.

DragChamp picks to win:

Jody Lang – Could this be the year Lang finally wins the championship? A win this weekend would be a great start.

Joe Sorensen – The Oregon-based class racing veteran knows how to turn on win lights.

Leo Glassbrenner – Owns a great record at the fairgrounds.

Super Comp – 51 Car Field

Parker Theobald

It’s seems weird but only one double-digit racer is in attendance this week, that being Division 7 champ Parker Theobald. None of the national top 10 are on the entry list. With that said, the entry list is as stout as usual with just about everyone capable of winning.

DragChamp picks to win:

Kevin Wright – The defending event champion is an easy pick based on his success on the West Coast.

Thomas Bayer – The driving school instructor can win in any class, might teach a few lessons this weekend.

Dan Foley – Texas-based runner would love to make the long haul pay off.

Super Gas – 51 Car Field

Pomona Sg Final 2
2019 Auto Club Finals Super Gas Final

Division 7 champ Mike Boehner leads the talented 51-car field this weekend. Notables on the entry list include Bruno Massel, making what may be his first attempt at Super Gas, and West Coast veteran Ted Seipel.

DragChamp picks to win:

Greg Ventura – Would love to kick off the season with a victory.

Brad Pierce – Consistently parks his classic Corvette in the winners circle.

Linzi Theobald Meserve – Had a big year in 2019, that could be a great sign of bigger things in 2020.

Super Street – 40 Car Field

Francesca Giroux
Frankie Giroux

The 40-car Super Street field could be the most interesting to watch. It’s loaded with talented racers who rarely get a chance to earn a Winternationals Wally.

DragChamp picks to win:

Francesca Giroux – She’s a consistent winner on the West Coast, should be in the mix come Sunday.

Kevin Houmard – Look for the talented D7 racer to take his beautiful Camaro to the win on the big stage.

Top Sportsman – 34 Car Field

Doug Crumlich

Talk about a talented field, the Top Sportsman entry list is loaded from top to bottom. Perennial Top 10 runner Doug Crumlich looks to improve on his #2 finish last season. Bo Butner takes a shot at the Top Sportsman class this weekend in what I believe to be a turbocharged small block Mustang. Should be interesting to watch!

DragChamp picks to win:

Jeff Gillette – Former Comp racer tends to find his way to the late rounds consistently at Pomona.

Joe Roubicek – Talented driver with great equipment. Look for the flamed-Camaro to make some rounds.

Top Dragster – 34 Car Field

James Warden 2019 Arizona Nationals Top Dragster Winner
James Warden

The fast dragster class is always interesting to watch just to see who may dip into the five-second zone, drawing the ire of the NHRA. 2018 World Champ Paul Nero and Steve Casner lead the class into the new year.

DragChamp picks to win:

Ed Oplin – The Utah-based racer has a terrific track record at Pomona.

James Warden – Quickly making a name for himself in the class. Knows how to turn on win lights too!

DragChamp is your source for NHRA Lucas Oil sportsman drag racing news and drag race results.

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