Up North: Northlanders Return for NHRA Races in Brainerd

August 23, 2017 10:49 PM

"Brainerd has a lot of history, for me especially, so I love coming back," said Line prior to the weekend races.

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Even with that, the three-time defending Pro Stock champion has never been blessed with a victory in Brainerd. Going into the races, Line sat fourth in the standings, but the season hasn't been what he had expected.

"The season has been mediocre for me at best really, so nothing like last year. I guess such is life. You have some good years and you have some bad years. Right now, it hasn't been great," added Line.

Line and his Summit Racing teammate Greg Anderson, also a Minnesota native, were both eliminated in the semifinals at the Brainerd International Raceway coming in at third and fourth in the Pro Stock races. Instead, it was 18-year old Tanner Gray who took the Pro Stock finals victory.

"If you would have told me, I was going to win four races my first year, I would have told you you were crazy. We've definitely got something going right now and it's clicking at the right time," said Gray.

Beyond the Pro Stock races it was a victory for women at the raceway. Alexis DeJoria walked away the winner of the Funny Car races claiming the 250th win for women in NHRA history.

"It's 2017. It's not as hard as it was for Shirley Muldowney, but obviously you know there's just a handful of us, so it's going to be a big win no matter what when girls do something," said Dejoria.

Following her was Leah Pritchett who claimed her fourth Top Fuel victory of the season with a finals victory at BIR. Two days before, she a ran the quickest pass in NHRA history during qualifying rounds.

To go multiple times, backing up our national record and doing incredible things in Denver, number one, it's absolutely amazing. The only thing that would be better than this is if we can keep this sprint of a marathon up all the way till the end," she said.

The Brainerd race is the 17th of 24 in the NHRA Mello Yellow Drag Racing Series. For Northlanders Line and Anderson, it may not have been a victory this weekend, but with the playoff format they say it's not over until it's over.


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