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Matt Hagan’s 3.966 From Friday went unchallenged for the duration of Saturday’s two runs and the field for the second time in the last three races. Hagan ran a 4.00 on Saturday afternoon and he aborted his final round after his Hellcat Charger shook the tires Hagan will race rookie Chris King in the opening round and the winner of that battle will get a bye run into the semifinals.

“We’ll take No. 1 qualifier and take that momentum into Sunday,” said Hagan. “We’ve got to go rounds tomorrow. Our Hellcat Charger was running so strong that the rear end was trying to pass the front end on that last [qualifying] run. We had nothing to lose so we went for it. I cannot wait to put on a show tomorrow for all these awesome fans in Denver.”

Alexis DeJoria also held on to the No. 2 spot with her ROKit/Bandero Premium Tequila Toyota thanks to a 3.982 on Friday night. Saturday’s best run was turned in by No. 3 qualifier Tim Wilkerson, who wheeled the Levi, Ray & Shoup Mustang to a 3.984, which bumped Ron Capps’ 3.986 to fourth.

Sunday’s most intriguing matchup features an intermural scrimmage between teammates John Force and Robert Hight. Force qualified No. 5 with a 4.014 while Hight was No. 10 in his Auto Club Camaro. The match also has huge points implications as Force is No. 2 while Hight entered the Denver race as the No. 4 ranked driver in the Camping World NHRA Funny Car standings.

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Driver of the Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye
 
Qualified:
No. 3 (3.899 E.T. at 327.82 MPH)
 
The Results:
E1: 3.948 E.T. at 324.83 MPH defeated Bobby Bode 4.021 E.T. at 308.50 MPH
E2: 4.086 E.T. at 260.16 MPH defeated by Alexis DeJoria 3.952 E.T. at 317.27 MPH
 
Race Recap:
Matt Hagan and the Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car team were solid during qualifying, earning the No. 3 starting position and three bonus points after recording the third-quickest run of Q1, and second-quickest of Q3. The reigning world champ, and 2018 event champ, lined up opposite Bobby Bode for the first time in eliminations on Sunday morning. Hagan's win-loss record against the rookie driver began with a W when Hagan nabbed the starting line advantage and powered to a 3.948 E.T. for the win. Against Alexis DeJoria, Hagan once again ensured himself an early lead by securing the holeshot advantage. He appeared to be on a good run and was neck-and-neck with DeJoria, who held a slight lead until his machine gave way with a flash and a bang down track, and he was forced to coast to the finish as his competitor drove away with the win.
 
Quotable:
“We still have a great race car here for Dodge and Mopar, and we were running a really tough opponent that round in Alexis (DeJoria). That team has been running well most of the year, and we have to push. In this class, in 2021, there isn’t a car that you don’t have to press hard against. Overall, I feel really great about our team and the direction we’re moving. Obviously, we want to go more rounds, but we’re gathering the data we need to keep moving forward and put this Hellcat in the winner’s circle, and that’s coming real soon. It’s not too far off. I’m excited about the future. We have a few weeks off and that’s nice cause I have a lot of farming to do back home in Virginia. That gives me the time to get focused for the Western Swing and this summer because we have a lot of races coming fast in a row. We’ll have a great chance to see what these guys do against adversity, and I’m excited for that. I hate that we went out second round, but we continue to learn and there’s a lot of racing left.”
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Qualified: No. 1 (3.891 E.T. at 331.53 MPH)
 
The Results:
E1: 3.935 E.T. at 327.11 MPH on a Bye run
E2: 3.983 E.T. at 328.06 MPH defeated by Tim Wilkerson 3.956 E.T. at 324.44 MPH

Race Recap:
Starting race day from the pole for the 41st time in his career and first time this season, three-time defending New England Nationals Funny Car champion Matt Hagan put himself in prime position to vie for a fourth straight Epping win on Sunday. He began his quest for the 2021 New England trophy by powering the DSR Performance Dodge Hellcat down the dragstrip in 3.935 seconds on a Bye run, which held up to be the quickest  E.T. of the round. The defending Camping World Series Funny Car champion then faced Tim Wilkerson in round two where he took his machine on another smooth, solid pass but found himself on the wrong side of a good drag race when Wilkerson was able to outrun to the finish line, recording a 3.956 E.T. to Hagan’s 3.983.
 
Quotable:
“It was a pretty good weekend at Epping. We qualified No. 1 for the first time this year and got that yellow No. 1 Camping World hat. The car ran really well, and we have a really good race car. We were just on the bad side of a good drag race that second round against Tim Wilkerson. You’re going to have those. You lose more than you win, but when you do win them, it makes them that much more special. Our turn for a win is right around the corner, so I’m really looking forward to Norwalk. We’re doing everything right to turn on the win lights, but sometimes you get on the bad side and that’s just racing. Last year we were on the right side of most of those races. You pay your dues, work hard and it will come around for ya, and that’s what we’re doing right now. We’ll roll into Norwalk and be excited for a great weekend. We’re glad to get DSR Performance and the DSR.parts website some good exposure with getting the No. 1 qualifier this weekend. The car looked good and it ran good, too. There’s so much racing left this season. This is only our sixth race in and there’s so much racing left, but it’s all about the finish and we’re a marathoner, not sprinting.”
 

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By no means has Matt Hagan had a bad start to the season. But the defending Funny Car world champ hasn’t had a winning start to the year, either, which means New England Dragway is popping up at the perfect point in the 2021 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series schedule.

Hagan has the last three wins there and he’ll look to make it four straight in Epping at next weekend’s TascaParts.com NHRA New England Nationals presented by Bandero Premium Tequila. For a multitude of reasons — some explainable and others not — Hagan feels right at home at the facility, and it’s brought out the best in his team.

“Some tracks just treat you well and show you a lot of love,” Hagan said. “It’s kind of one of those things where we seem to qualify well and run well there. Our car likes to have that cooler weather and it’s a great racing surface there. When it’s a little cooler, the car just wants to run. That’s the wheelhouse for (crew chief) Dickie Venables. He just wants to throw down.”

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NHRA - As a Funny Car pilot on the weekend, and cattle and hemp rancher during the week, it’s safe to say Don Schumacher Racing’s Matt Hagan is certainly deserved of the moniker of "world’s fastest farmer." The reigning three-time world champion has enjoyed a successful NHRA Drag Racing and farming career for more than a decade, and his two "day jobs" often intertwine. For the last eight years, Hagan has relied on New Holland’s hay and forage equipment on his Christiansburg, Va., property, and will now benefit from New Holland’s support on the racetrack, as he welcomes the global agricultural machinery brand to his Funny Car team as an associate partner.
 
“New Holland has been a crucial partner for me on my farm,” said Hagan, a multi-hyphenate who launched Hagan Cattle Company, a farm-to-table beef delivery service, to his portfolio of businesses, which also includes TruHarvest, a burgeoning CBD company, and a successful cattle sales business. “Over the past four years, I’ve transitioned almost all of my machinery to New Holland equipment, and I’m excited to now be able to represent their brand on the side of our race car. I know many of our fans are farmers themselves, especially in many of the mid-Western states that we visit on the NHRA tour. I always enjoy talking farming at the ropes with people, so it just made sense to now bring New Holland on board with the race team and expand our current partnership beyond my Virginia farm.”
 
When not wrangling his 11,000-hp Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat, Hagan spends his days on his 3,400-acre property, where he raises about 750 “momma” cows that produce calves for the market and is active in cultivating his hemp farming endeavor, which requires many of the same types of processes and machinery as cattle farming. He is hands-on in all aspects, from growing feed to being able to handle every chore on the spread.
 
“There is so much plowing, baling, raking, and cutting involved with operating both of my farming businesses, and using New Holland’s equipment makes my life, and everyone else that works on the farm, so much easier,” added Hagan. “Cattle farming is year-round, and hemp farming is seasonal. I’m fortunate we can use most of the same equipment.”
 
Hagan’s expanded partnership with New Holland will include associate branding on his Dodge Funny Car at all 2021 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series events, and he will fly the company’s signature blue and yellow colors in St. Louis, where New Holland will join the 2020 Funny Car world champ as his primary sponsor at the NHRA Midwest Nationals later this season.

Next NHRA Event

Lucas Winternats 18

FC Points

Camping World Funny Car Top Ten

1 Bob Tasca III 676
2 Matt Hagan 655
3 Robert Hight 636
4 John Force 624
5 Ron Capps 613
6 J.R. Todd 584
7 Alexis DeJoria 577
8 Tim Wilkerson 526
9 Cruz Pedregon 481
10 Terry Haddock 306

Hagan Cattle Co

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