LAS VEGAS, NV — No one in drag racing has enjoyed a better run of luck at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway than two-time Pro Stock champion Erica Enders, who returns to her favorite drag strip this weekend with two chances at glory during the 18th annual Denso Spark Plugs
Thanks to her legion of loyal fans, Enders will be taking part in the K&N Horsepower Challenge, a special race-within-a-race for the top eight Pro Stock drivers from the previous 12 months. Enders earned the final spot in the elite field by virtue of an online fan vote.
“Our fans have proved, once again, to be the best in all of motorsports,” Enders said. “I feel so blessed and I am so thankful for their incredible support. We will do everything we can to show our appreciation by running the wheels off this Elite Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro to try and win this year’s K&N Horsepower Challenge.”
From 2013 on, Enders has been a nearly unstoppable force in Las Vegas. After racing to a runner-up result at the ’13 K&N Horsepower Challenge, Enders reeled off an incredible streak of 23 elimination-round wins at The Strip. The run included victories at the spring and fall national events and the K&N Challenge in both 2014 and 2015. It finally ended in the semifinals of lastyear’s Challenge.
“We had a dream run, for sure,” Enders said. “It got to the point where it seemed like we just wouldn’t ever lose again. That’s pretty darn rare for drag racers because we all know that only one person wins on a given weekend.
“All the credit in the world goes to (team owner) Richard Freeman and this crew. We’ve been through the highs and lows as an unbreakable family and that streak was certainly one of the highlights. It may have looked easy but I assure you it wasn’t. That was some of the toughest racing ever but we came out on top every time.”
A native Texan with the fight to match her Lone Star pedigree, Enders cautions her rivals not to take her team lightly even though they needed the fan vote to make the field of this year’s K&N Horsepower Challenge.
“I feel a lot of confidence with our racecar right now,” she said. “We qualified No. 3 at the last race in Gainesville and had a really great car until we shook the tires in Round 2 of eliminations. We stayed after the event and tested until we got the car completely figured out so we have a good feeling coming to Vegas. My guys are the best and my wonderful fans are giving us this chance to show what we can do. I am one happy girl.”
Pro Stock qualifying sessions for the 18th annual Denso Spark Plugs NHRA Nationals are scheduled for 2 and 4:30 p.m., Friday, and 1:40 and 4:05 p.m., Saturday, with eliminations starting at 1 p.m., Sunday. Television coverage on FOX Sports 1 begins with two qualifying shows, one at 3:30 p.m., Friday, and the other at 4 p.m., Saturday, followed by live elimination action beginning at 3 p.m., Sunday. (All times listed in PDT).