Erica Enders and Angie Smith Cap 2020 Season with a Wally
While winning a NHRA Camping World event is a perfect way to cap off any season, Erica Enders came to the Dodge NHRA Finals at The Strip in Las Vegas looking to clinch a fourth Pro Stock world championship. On the other hand, Angie Smith came to Las Vegas Motor Speedway trying to win her way to the final elimination round with hopes of claiming a Wally against her husband, Matt Smith, who was trying to clinch his fourth NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series world championship in Pro Stock Motorcycle. Driving the Melling Performance/Elite Performance Camaro, Enders won the Pro Stock championship after her first-round win at the 20th annual Dodge NHRA Finals at The Strip. Conversely, as a member of the DENSO 200-mph Club, no one in Pro Stock Motorcycle takes Angie Smith for granted, and she certainly proved why they shouldn’t at Sunday’s finals.
Koretsky Reaches First Career Final Round Against Enders
Although Enders entered the finale of the 2020 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series with a good chance of claiming her fourth Pro Stock world title, a poor qualifying effort left her in 12th place on Saturday and put the defending class champion on the defense. However, Enders rallied with a Round One holeshot victory over Alex Laughlin, while Jeg Coughlin and Jason Line (tied for 2nd in the Pro Stock championship) were upset by Aaron Stanfield and Cristian Cuadra, respectively. This handed Enders her fourth NHRA world championship to make her the winningest female competitor in National Hot Rod Association history ahead of Top Fuel driver Shirley Muldowney and Pro Stock Motorcycle racer Angelle Sampey (with 43 NHRA wins). In the final round of 2020, Enders faced first-time finalist Kyle Koretsky who promptly red-lighted in his Nitro Fish Camaro handing Enders a season-ending Wally.
Angie Smith Finishes on Top in NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle
While the weekend was suppose to be all about Matt Smith clinching his fourth world championship in NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle, Angie Smith stayed focused on the task at hand of working her side of the ladder with the goal racing beside her husband in the final round of the Dodge NHRA Finals. While DENSO Pro Stock Motorcycle racer Angie Smith was waiting for her semi-final round matchup with Hector Arana Jr., her teammate (and husband) Matt had to overcome a .005-second reaction time by Andrew Hines to post a winning ET of 6.875-seconds. By advancing to the semi-final round Matt Smith clinched his fourth NHRA world championship title, which was a good thing as his DENSO EBR failed to start giving Steve Johnson a free pass to the final round of the Dodge NHRA Finals. With 446 starts under his belt, no one in the pits has more experience than the veteran Suzuki racer. Nonetheless, Angie Smith was not to be denied and claimed the second NHRA Wally of her career.
Provided the coronavirus restrictions that haunted the 2020 season are gone, the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series returns to action at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway twice in 2021 with the DENSO Spark Plugs NHRA Four-Wide Nationals, April 16-18, and the Dodge NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil, Oct. 29-31.
Photo Credit Erica Enders Racing