Team Kalitta enters the final race of the 2020 Camping World Drag Racing Series with Doug Kalitta and the Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster in championship contention. Shawn Langdon in the DHL Top Fuel dragster and J.R. Todd in the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car are battling for top five finishes.
Doug Kalitta and the Mac Tools Top Fuel dragster team will need some help if they are going to secure their first NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series Top Fuel world championship this weekend. Only two drivers are in contention, Steve Torrence and Kalitta, with Kalitta trailing the point leader by 101 points. There are 168 points up for grabs in competition including qualifying points and the 30 points awarded per round win. There are a number of scenarios that lead to a Kalitta world championship but the most realistic is a Torrence loss in the first round and a Kalitta victory.
“We have a chance to get the world championship and that is all we want,” said Kalitta. “It is a long shot but strange things can happen on race day. Nothing is guaranteed. This Mac Tools team is going to go out there and take care of our business. That is all we can do.”
The Mac Tools team has raced to four final rounds this season and picked up two wins. Kalitta started the season with a win at the Winternationals and also won the Midwest Nationals in St Louis earlier this month. In 2019 Kalitta picked up a season opening win at Auto Club Raceway and closed the season with a win there as well. He would like to repeat that bookend victory celebration at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
“We missed the championship by three points last year but won the last race,” said Kalitta. “This year we need to win the last race and I think we could win the champions by about the same margin. I honestly don’t really look at that stuff but our focus Saturday and Sunday will be to put this Mac Tools dragster in the winner’s circle.”
The 49-time Top Fuel winner has some good history at the race track north of Las Vegas. He has two wins, most recently in 2015 and also 2004. He has raced to six total final rounds including four runner-up finishes in 2014, 2007, 2005 and 2003. His streak of four finals in five years and the win in 2015 gives Kalitta confidence.
“I don’t think there are tracks that are lucky for a driver. I do think there are tracks where your team has a good handle on the conditions. This Mac Tools team has a lot of data so I know my crew chief Rob Flynn will be able to make the right decisions when the time comes. We only have two qualifying runs so that makes it tricky but we can’t race with any regrets,” added Kalitta.