J.R. Todd first black winner in NHRA Funny Car history
Jul. 31, 2017
SONOMA, Calif. (AP) — J.R. Todd became the first black winner in NHRA Funny Car history Sunday, beating Tim Wilkerson in the Sonoma Nationals.
The 35-year-old Todd, from Lawrenceburg, Indiana also joined Don Prudhomme as the only NHRA drivers to win at Sonoma Raceway in both nitro categories. Todd won nine time in Top Fuel.
Todd beat Wilkerson with a 4.049-second pass at 323.27 mph in a Toyota Camry.
"Our car showed us a lot of promise in Denver which gave us hope coming into here," Todd said. "We've been struggling so bad this season. I'm just happy to win a Funny Car. I was able to win here last year in Top Fuel and to be able to come back and do it again in Funny Car is pretty special."
Wilkerson's Ford Shelby Mustang went up in smoke in a 6.823 at 100.26.
Steve Torrence raced to his sixth Top Fuel victory of the season, Tanner Gray topped the Pro Stock field for his third win in his rookie season, and LE Tonglet took his fifth Pro Stock Motorcycle victory of the year.
Torrence beat Antron Brown in the final with a 3.784 at 329.42. Gray had a 6.572 at 210.05 in a Chevrolet Camaro to edge points leader Bo Butner. Tonglet beat Matt Smith with a 6.783 at 197.02 on a Suzuki. Tonglet won the Mickey Thompson Tires Pro Bike Battle on Saturday.