Grubnic Ready to Charge Into 2012 NHRA Season with New OPTIMA Batteries Top Fueler
POMONA, California. (Feb. 7, 2012) – Native Australian David Grubnic, driver of the 8,000-horsepower OPTIMA Batteries Top Fuel dragster, has a new outlook and a newly-decorated, nitro-fueled hot rod as the 2012 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series gets rolling with the season-opening NHRA Winternationals this weekend, Feb. 9-12, at famed Auto Club Raceway at Pomona in Pomona, California.
When the action heats up on the 1,000-ft. Auto Club Raceway track this weekend, Grubnic will debut the colors of OPTIMA Batteries as the primary sponsor on his 300+ mph race car. The new digs and recent pre-season testing performances have Grubnic brimming with optimism about the upcoming season.
“You bet, I’m very excited about getting started this season with the OPTIMA Batteries dragster,” Grubnic, a 49-year old resident of Bozeman, Montana, said. “Our race car looks amazing and I think it’s going to put up some great numbers on the score board as well turn some heads in the grandstands. We’ve been working really hard in the offseason to come up with some new tuning combinations and we’ve already seen some great results from that during our pre-season testing last month.
“Pomona is such a special place to everyone that loves drag racing. My first Top Fuel race in the States was at the Winternationals in 1995. I think we have a really great shot at winning the trophy this year, and that would certainly be a highlight of my career.”
Grubnic, an 18-year Top Fuel veteran, earned his first career Top Fuel victory in Topeka, Kansas in 2005, becoming the first racer born outside North America to win an NHRA Top Fuel event. He has two wins in his career with 15 final-round appearances. Grubnic’s OPTIMA Batteries Top Fueler is helmed by drag racing icon and team owner Connie “the Bounty Hunter” Kalitta, who serves as crew chief.
Kalitta won the Winternationals as a driver in Top Fuel in 1967, his first of ten NHRA national event wins. Also in 1967, Kalitta swept the winternational events for the three major drag racing sanctioning bodies at the time by also winning the AHRA and NASCAR event titles.
The NHRA Winternationals begin Thursday for the nitro-fueled classes with one qualifying session at 2:00 p.m. (PT). Another qualifying session takes place at 2:00 p.m. Friday. Two more qualifying attempts will take place on Saturday at 11:30 a.m. and 2:15 p.m. The top 16 qualified cars in each nitro class will race Sunday in final eliminations beginning at 11:00 a.m.
Times and dates subject to change.
ESPN2 TV Schedule
2/11/2012 Qualifying 11:00 PM-1:00 AM (ET)
2/12/2012 Eliminations 7:00 PM-10:30 PM (ET)
Times and dates subject to change.
About Kalitta Motorsports
Based in Ypsilanti, Mich., Kalitta Motorsports is a Top Fuel and FunnyCar drag racing team in the NHRA (National Hot Rod Association) Full Throttle Drag Racing Series. The team was founded and is owned by drag racing icon, Connie “the Bounty Hunter” Kalitta. For more than 50 years, Connie has been involved in the sport as a driver, tuner, and an owner. Kalitta Motorsports is one of the most-successful teams in the history of auto racing with five world championships and over 50 national event titles in five different professional drag racing sanctioning bodies since it was established by Connie in 1959.
Jeff Arend drives the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car for Team Kalitta. Alexis DeJoria pilots the Tequila Patrón Toyota Camry Funny Car. David Grubnic drives the OPTIMA Batteries Top Fuel dragster while Connie’s nephew, Doug Kalitta, pilots the Kalitta Air Top Fuel dragster. Connie serves as head tuner for all Team Kalitta entries. He is assisted by co-crew chiefs Jon Oberhofer and Nick Boninfante on the DHL Funny Car, by Del Worsham on the Tequila Patrón Funny Car, and by Jim Oberhofer on the Kalitta Air Top Fuel dragster. Connie serves as crew chief on the OPTIMA Batteries Top Fuel dragster.
Associate sponsors on Kalitta Motorsports’ race cars include Candlewood Suites, ROCKY Boots, Red Line Oil, Technicoat Companies, OPTIMA Batteries, JEGS, and Mac Tools.
For more info about Kalitta Motorsports including exclusive content suchas videos, photos and more, please visit their website. You can also follow them on Twitter, Facebook and check out videos about Team Kalitta on their YouTube Channel.