cruz pedregon–phoenix advance

Cruz Pedregon

NHRA® Arizona Nationals – Phoenix

Pre-Race Report

News of note: 

·       Phoenix is the site of Cruz’s first national event win in an Alcohol Dragster in 1988.

·       Cruz and the team have qualified in the top half of the Funny Car standings during the first two events of the NHRA season.

Quotes and favorite memories of Phoenix – 

Cruz Pedregon, two-time Funny Car World Champion

Phoenix is a historic race for me, it’s the site of my first national event win…ever. It was in the fall of 1988. I remember, like it was yesterday going into the final. It was dusk in an Alcohol Dragster, and I was going up against Jay Payne, who I think was the number one qualifier. We were kind of the underdog. And I remember it was a very close race. I got the jump at the start and won on a hole shot. It was like winning a championship or winning the Super Bowl for me, it meant everything to me to notch that first win there in Arizona. 

Since then, Phoenix has been a good track for us. We’ve won in Funny Car there several times. We have a lot of family in southern Arizona, New Mexico, and southern Texas. So, lots of family and cousins come out and support us. 

It’s such a great fan base there, and it’s a good track. I’m glad they kept it going, revamped everything and they’re keeping the track there because it’s also a great market for Snap-on, our primary sponsor. Lots of interest there with the Snap-on franchisees and a lot of great support there for our hospitality program. 

The Snap-on Dodge is running well, we’re just trying to get dialed-in for the race day. We’ve qualified in the top half for the first two races of the year. We just have to get the consistency locked down. 

Name on the side of Cruz’s car – Snap-on Nitro Franchisee Rusty Houck

·       Rusty worked for Snap-on before getting into his franchise seven years ago. 

·       He’s retiring from the Army in July after 24 years as a Master Sergeant in the Army Reserves.

·       When he was called up, his son ran the Snap-on route for him. 

·       He’s stayed stateside most recently, training the soldiers who were going overseas. 

·       He spends his free time restoring old cars and still gets excited when his customers buy tools from him. 

·       He took Cruz to visit with auto care professionals in several smaller shops before the race as well as the Gila River Indian Reservation to check out some concrete companies he calls on in the area.

·       As Cruz’s primary sponsor, Snap-on is asking NHRA fans to follow Makers and Fixers on Instagram, like those Cruz visits with, where they can submit their own stories to

·       As Cruz’s primary sponsor, Snap-on is asking NHRA fans to follow @Makersandfixers on IG where they spotlight nearly 2,000 global Makers and Fixers doing real work for the real world. From pit crews to gearheads in the stands, they want to hear your stories too.   

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