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Record Crowds Celebrate the AAA Insurance NHRA Midwest Nationals at Gateway Motorsports Park
Courtney Force’s Win Makes Her The Winningest
Woman in Funny Car History
September 28, 2014 – St. Louis Region – Speed junkies of all shapes, sizes and ages came from around the country to watch the fastest cars on land at the AAA Insurance National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) Midwest Nationals at Gateway Motorsports Park this weekend. This was the 21st of 24 events in the 2014 drag racing series and is a key race in the “Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship.
“We had record crowds and we couldn’t be happier with the way the weekend unfolded,” said Curtis Francois, Gateway Motorsports Park President and Owner. “It’s humbling to see our vision transform into a reality like this. We are dedicated to making Gateway Motorsports Park the best track in the country where fans and fun rule. We owe this weekend’s success to motorsports fans, local sponsors and AAA Insurance, and my staff – all who want to see this track live on for decades to come.” Track officials estimate that over 50,000 fans gathered to watch professional drag racing, more than in any year in track history.
The NHRA Countdown to the Championship featured all four professional categories: Top Fuel, Funny Car, Pro Stock, and Pro Stock Motorcycle. Drivers in the Countdown to the Championship work to gather all the points they can at each of the Countdown events as the competition gets tighter and the spirits get more intense in the fight for the 2014 championships.
Winners this year include:
2012 National Top Fuel Champion and four-time Gateway Motorsports Park winner Antron Brown who drives the Top Fuel Matco Tools dragster (3.844, 315.42). This is Brown’s third straight win at Gateway MSP including 2009, 2012, 2013, and 2014. The win snaps a three-race, first-round loss streak for Brown. He moves to fourth in the points standing, 80 points behind series leader Tony Schumacher.
Funny Car driver Courtney Force secured her first win at Gateway Motorsports Park with her Traxxas Ford Mustang (4.094, 313.44). Force is the daughter of drag racing legend John Force, the Babe Ruth of drag racing industry. With her run at Gateway MSP, Courtney Force became the first female to win four Funny Car events in a single season. This is her second consecutive victory in the Mello Yello Countdown playoffs. Force moved to second position in the points standings, 30 points behind her father and leader, John Force. Courtney Force is officially the winningest female in Funny Car NHRA history.
Pro Stock driver Dave Connolly, who beat 2012 and 2013 Gateway Motorsports Park winner Erica Enders-Stevens in the semi-finals, won in his Charter Communications Chevy Camaro (6.562, 211.53). This is Connolly’s second consecutive Countdown victory, and this win put him within 26 points of the series leader. This is his second St. Louis victory.
Pro Stock Motorcycle driver Jerry Savoie secured his first career victory at Gateway Motorsports Park with his Savoie’s Alligator Farm Suzuk, (6.871, 196.53). As a native of Louisiana, he moonlights as an alligator farmer.
The 2013 AAA Midwest Nationals winners at Gateway Motorsports Park include Funny Car driver John Force, Top Fuel driver Antron Brown, Pro Stock driver Erica Enders and Pro Stock Motorcycle driver Matt Smith.
At Gateway Motorsports Park our mission is to provide our fans, racers and sponsors with a first-class, up close and personal racing experience. This includes unprecedented access to the drag strip, the oval, the road-racing track and a nationally-sanctioned karting track as well as special events such as concert and corporate functions for year-round activity at Gateway Motorsports Park. www.gatewaymsp.com