DHL Camry and J.R. Todd Heading to St. Louis with Victory on Horizon

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A strong performance at Maple Grove Raceway two weeks ago moved J.R. Todd and the DHL Toyota Camry up in the Mello Yello point standings and gave the team a big boost with five races left in the Countdown. Back to back semifinal finishes over the past two races has Todd feeling like their next win is right around the corner.

“We were going for three wins in a row at Indy and almost made the final,” said Todd. “Two weeks ago we had a great car on Sunday and just missed another final. I think these Yella Fellas on the DHL team have a great handle on this Camry and I am excited to get back on the track. We tightened up our position in the points and I think with four win lights on Sunday we can make a good move.”

This season has seen Todd defend his Funny Car championship with another win in Las Vegas and runner-up finishes in Phoenix and most recently Richmond. The summer was a tough battle for the DHL team but the past two races have put a lot of the frustration behind the Toyota Camry Funny Car team.

“It is tough to maintain peak performance for a long stretch,” said Todd. “We got hot right about this time last year. We won Reading and had a semifinal in St. Louis. If we can get a win this weekend we will be on track to do some more damage the rest of the Countdown. We have been working really well as a team and I don’t see any reason why we can’t get the job done in St. Louis.”

Last season Todd went on a championship clinching tear after the race at World Wide Technology Raceway. He grabbed runner-up finishes in Dallas and Charlotte before winning out in Las Vegas and Pomona. Five final rounds over the last six races is still an achievable result for Todd who is trying to become the first back-to-back Funny Car champion in over a decade.

“I am not focusing on winning another championship right now,” said Todd. “I am focused on winning in St. Louis and then we will take on the next race. Round wins put you in position for championships this time of the year. We need to get some bonus points in St. Louis and then take care of our business on Sunday. I like our chances because we have been in this position before. I wouldn’t want to be chasing this championship with any other guys than my teammates on this DHL Toyota Funny Car team.”

2018 NHRA Midwest Nationals Highlights:  Qual. No. 7; Beat Shawn Langdon, Cruz Pedregon; Lost to Tim Wilkerson

Last Event Recap (2019 NHRA Reading Nationals): Qual. No. 10; Beat Tommy Johnson Jr., John Smith; Lost to Jack Beckman

Quotable: J.R. Todd on move up in points: “We made a good move two weeks ago and we are right in the mix for this Funny Car championship. We need to keep going rounds and try and knock some of the cars in front of us out early in St. Louis.”

Career Stats: 219 events, 211 starts, 232 round wins, 18 wins, 32 finals, 12 No. 1 qualifiers; in Funny Car: 67 events, 67 starts, 9 wins, 12 finals, 82 round wins, 3 No. 1 qualifiers

2019 Season:
Winternationals: Qual. No. 9; Lost to Bob Tasca III
Arizona Nationals: Qual. No. 5; RUNNER-UP; Beat Terry Haddock, Tommy Johnson Jr., Robert Hight, Lost to Matt Hagan
Gatornationals: Qual. No. 11; Lost to Jack Beckman
Las Vegas1: Qual. No. 4; WINNER; Beat Gary Densham and Jim Campbell in first quad, Matt Hagan and Jeff Diehl in second quad and in the final quad beat Tommy Johnson Jr., Jack Beckman and Tim Wilkerson.
Houston: Qual. No. 4; Beat Jim Campbell; Lost to Robert Hight
Charlotte1: Qual. No. 8; Beat Bob Tasca III and Bob Glibertson; Lost to Shawn Langdon and Robert Hight
Atlanta: Qual. No. 2; Beat Jim Campbell; Lost to Tommy Johnson Jr.
Richmond: Qual. No. 4; RUNNER-UP; Beat Bob Tasca III, Shawn Langdon, Jonnie Lindberg; Lost to Ron Capps
Chicago: Qual. No. 6; Lost to John Force
Topeka: Qual. No. 1; Beat bye; Lost to Robert Hight
Bristol: Qual. No. 5; Beat Terry Haddock; Lost to Jack Beckman
Norwalk: Qual. No. 7; Beat Robert Hight; Lost to John Force
Epping: Qual. No. 1; Beat bye; Lost to Tim Wilkerson
Denver: Qual. No. 11; Lost to John Force
Sonoma: Qual. No. 11; Lost to Matt Hagan
Seattle: Qual. No. 2; Beat Jeff Diehl; Lost to Ron Capps
Brainerd: Qual. No. 10; Lost to Ron Capps
Indianapolis: Qual. No. 5; Beat Cruz Pedregon, Ray Martin; Lost to Jack Beckman
Reading: Qual. No. 10; Beat Tommy Johnson Jr., John Smith; Lost to Jack Beckman

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