Gonzalez Captures E3 Spark Plugs Pro Mod Win at Gainesville
Veteran Pro Mod driver Jose Gonzalez made the quickest run in E3 Spark Plugs Pro Mod drag racing history on Sunday at the 52nd annual Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals with a 5.621 ET. After qualifying third fastest behind Khalid Albalooshi and number one qualifier Justin Bond, the Dominican born Gonzalez (aka The General) posted his record setting run during the first round of eliminations against Jerico Balduf. Missing its familiar bright orange body color, Gonzalez powered his flat gray Q80 Racing/EGR ProCharger-powered Chevrolet Camaro, to elimination round wins over Clint Satterfield and Khalid Albalooshi enroute to his sixth career final round matchup against Bond.
Justin Bond posted a 5.638 ET at 253.80 mph to qualify number one for the first time in his ProCharger-powered JBS/Bahrain 1 Racing Camaro. In elimination rounds, Bond defeated Jim Whiteley with a 5.720 ET, Jeffrey Barker with a 5.710 ET, and Jonathan Gray with a 5.711 ET to reach his third career final round in NHRA’s Pro Mod division. Jerico Balduf had the fastest reaction time of the event with a .011 RT in his opening round against Gonzalez, who recovered from his slower .036 RT to set an E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod record elapsed time at 5.621 seconds. Gonzalez caught Bond at the 60-foot mark and captured the win in the righthand lane, which had caused other competitors problems throughout the day at Gainesville Raceway.
In 2018, Gonzalez became the first Dominican driver to earn a victory at a NHRA national event when he won the E3 Spark Plugs Pro Mod division at Charlotte’s zMAX Dragway over Stevie “Fast” Jackson. A year later, Gonzalez captured a Pro Mod win at the Thunder Valley Nationals in Bristol TN by defeating Bob Rahaim with a 256.06 mph pass, which was the fastest Pro Mod speed recorded at the Bristol National. Sunday’s event was the first of twelve Pro Mod drag racing events scheduled for the 2021 season. E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by J&A Service returns to action April 30-May 2 at the 40th annual NHRA Southern Nationals at Atlanta Dragway.
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