The Mac Tools Top Fuel team and championship contender Doug Kalitta will be heading to the NGK NTK NHRA Four-Wide Nationals in Charlotte looking to add another zMAX Dragway title to their record book. In 2017 Kalitta grabbed four win lights on the way to victory at the annual fall event at the “Bellagio of Drag Strips” nestled beside Charlotte Motor Speedway. This weekend at the 11th NGK NTK Four-Wide Nationals, Kalitta will be looking for three win lights thanks to the unique quad format for four-wide racing. Hosting national events in Charlotte has opened the sport to thousands of new fans over the years and the race attracts NASCAR fans and drivers who are looking for an exciting alternative.
“The Charlotte facility is one of the nicest tracks we race at all season,” said Kalitta. “The fans are great and I think we have introduced drag racing to a lot of NASCAR fans over the years. We will have Kyle Busch here on Friday from Rowdy Energy drink one of our sponsors so that will be neat.”
Two weeks ago in Atlanta, a race that featured only one day of qualifying, Kalitta and the Mac Tools team had to battle a tough track with limited runs. They made the show but going into the first round they knew they needed to step up on the performance side. The team did just that in the first round posting the second quickest run of the event at the time but it wasn’t enough to get the win light in a race that was decided by about six feet at the finish line.
“We didn’t go as many rounds as we would have liked in Atlanta but that is the tricky thing about the one day qualifying races,” explained Kalitta. “You can get behind the eight ball a little and it takes time to catch up. We made a great run in the first round that if we were racing a different opponent would have advanced us to the next round. That is racing and we just put it behind us.”
The 2021 season has only seen three races contested since mid-March and now that the calendar is turning to summer events will be happening with a higher frequency. The accelerated schedule is a welcome change for Kalitta and the Mac Tools Top Fuel team that has a runner-up finish at the first four-wide race this season.
“We are getting into a racing rhythm which I think will be good for this Mac Tools team,” said Kalitta. “We had a race two weeks ago and now we will be going back to back with Charlotte and then Houston. I love racing this Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster so spending this time at the track is important.”
Kalitta sits in seventh place in the Camping World Top Fuel point standings but he is just one round out of fourth place. zMAX Dragway will host one qualifying session on Friday, May 14, followed by two qualifying sessions on Saturday May 15. Final eliminations will begin at noon ET on Sunday, May 16. Fans can tune in to FS1 for the broadcast on Sunday evening.
2019 NHRA Carolina Four-Wide Nationals Highlights (event not contested in 2020): Qual. No. 4; Beat Richie Crampton and Lex Joon; Lost to Clay Millican and Leah Pruett
Last Event Recap (2021 NHRA Southern Nationals): Qual. No. 9; Lost to Antron Brown
Career Stats: 527 events, 520 starts, 715 round wins, 49 wins, 106 finals, 50 No. 1 qualifiers
Gatornationals: Qual. No. 4; Beat Arthur Allen; Lost to Justin Ashley
Las Vegas1: RUNNER-UP; Qual. No. 3; Beat Troy Buff and Rob Passey, Beat Shawn Langdon and Leah Pruett; Lost to Steve Torrence
Atlanta: Qual. No. 9; Lost to Antron Brown
Kalitta Motorsports PR