HOLLYWOOD, CA — KLR Group driver Erica Enders’ GK Motorsports team repeated as the Full Throttle Hard-Working Crew Award winners for the ultra-competitive Pro Stock class, earning the honor at the NHRA Awards Ceremony Monday night at the Grand Ballroom of the Hollywood & Highland Center.
Enders’ team was nominated for its performance in guiding her to an historic victory July 1 in Joliet, Ill. Enders became the first woman to won a Pro Stock race when he beat Greg Anderson in the final of the Route 66 Raceway.
ESPN’s crew determines the Hard-Working Crew for each national event. After the late October race in Las Vegas, four teams from each of the four professional categories were announced as finalists for the award, and fans voted on the winner.
“Back-to-back is awesome,” Enders said. “I couldn’t be more proud of my guys. They are the reason why we have four trophies on our shelves this year. They work their tails off every day and spend a lot of time away from their families. They deserve this award a lot.”
Led by sponsor Gaston Kearby and team owner Victor Cagnazzi, the GK Motorsports team is comprised of crew chiefs Tommy Utt and Dave Connolly and crew members, Todd Bevis, Johnny Utt, Rich Saulino, Wayne “Turbo” Hasenmayer and Dan Duncan.
The team received a $15,000 check Monday night for winning the award.
“They do need the spotlight,” Enders said. “At the end of the day, I’m the one who gets a microphone shoved in my face when in all reality, all I did was drive the thing. Yeah, that’s a challenging job and you’ve got to be really good at it. But they’re the ones who make it happen. You can be the best driver in the world, but without a good, solid group of people behind you, you’ll go nowhere. I’m really blessed to have them.”
Enders finished her best season as a pro on Sunday when she ended up fourth in the Pro Stock points standings. She won four times, including back-to-back wins at Seattle and Brainerd, reached the final round seven times and won two No. 1 qualifiers.