Jeff Arend and the Champion spark plug-powered DHL/Kalitta Funny Car captured their first title of the 2011 season with a final-round victory over Mike Neff in the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Spring Nationals at Royal Purple Raceway in Houston.
Arend’s 8,000-horsepower Funny Car qualified 10th but fought its way into the final with victories over Paul Lee, Tim Wilkerson and Bob Bode. Arend, runner-up in last year’s Spring Nationals, was prepared for a tough final-round challenge from Neff, but the Funny Car points leader “double-stepped” on the starting line and fouled out. It was the third win of Arend’s 16-year Funny Car career.
Royal Purple Raceway is a special track for Team Kalitta as it was the location of Scott Kalitta’s first NHRA national-event Funny Car win in 1989.
“We’re thrilled to have helped power Jeff and the DHL/Kalitta Funny Car to this important win,” said Scott Belanger, product manager, Champion spark plugs. “Our latest ignition technologies are playing vital roles in the success of teams in every form of racing, from motorcycle and snowmobile competition to NASCAR Sprint Cup and NHRA Full Throttle Series racing.”
Arend’s Funny Car engines are equipped with Champion N1043Y racing plugs, which feature an unplated 600 alloy ground wire and Federal-Mogul’s exclusive Surefire ceramic material. These plugs are also equipped with shorter shells that increase flashover length for improved performance and increased resistance to arcing and misfire.
For additional information regarding Champion racing plugs, contact your performance parts provider, click on the “Aftermarket Solutions” link at www.federalmogul.com or write: Champion Marketing, Federal-Mogul Corporation, 26555 Northwestern Highway, Southfield, MI 48033.