Category Archives: Cruz Pedregon

Cruz Pedregon–Brainerd Advance

NHRA® Team Report

NHRA Lucas Oil Nationals – Brainerd, Minn.

Pre-Race Report

Cruz Pedregon and team took the Snap-on Toyota to task at a match race before Brainerd, and it performed the way they plan for it to in the weekend ahead. “This top 10 position feels really good heading into the Playoffs. The car is doing just what we need it to do to move up in the standings in the next two critical races,” Cruz says. “We’ll take it a round at a time. But, running a 3.92 and a 3.93 before getting here has us in a good spot mentally and right where we want to be with our tuning.”

Crew Chief Aaron Brooks says, “We’re ready to get a couple of rounds under our belt and qualify in the top five. As a team, we know we’ve got the Snap-on Toyota right where we want it. Cruz is feeling good, and so are we.”

This weekend, the Snap-on Toyota will be sporting its traditional paint scheme on the “El Jefe” body. Cruz’s El Guapo, the handsome one, body had some nose damage after a trip to the sand earlier this year. Cruz says the team is looking forward to the car living up to its name as “the chief.” To get a feel for what it’s like to go 322 mph in The Snap-on Toyota, check out Cruz’s recent video here.

Cruz Pedregon–Sonoma Advance

NHRA® Team Report

NHRA Nationals – Sonoma, CA

Pre-Race Report

Cruz Pedregon is feeling momentum heading into Sonoma. “Our trip to the semi-finals last weekend demonstrates that things are coming together for the Snap-on Toyota. It’s really exciting for us to be in a Playoff spot, and we’re good with the plan we have for returning to sea level after Denver,” Cruz says. “I always look forward to being back in the state where I grew up and am excited about visiting the Oakland Raiders Team Camp Monday after this weekend’s race. We’d love it if some of those guys would come out to the track and watch the pros in our sport before heading out to the practice field. We have a lot of fun when the NHRA works with us to pay a visit to the Team Camp each year.” Cruz is such a dedicated Oakland fan, he plans to unveil a new Raiders helmet later this season in Indy.

Crew Chief Aaron Brooks says, “We had a little nose damage on the El Guapo body after hitting the sand, so fans will be seeing El Jefe in Sonoma. Everything is running well with the tune up, and we’re expecting great things for the fans at the track and those watching at home on FOX.”

On the side of Cruz’s car –

If you’ll check the side of Cruz’s car this week, you’ll see the name of Snap-on Nitro Franchisee Phil Agnew. Phil was in consumer finance before starting his Snap-on franchise, and he says the two businesses actually have more in common than you’d think. But, he says he likes running his own business, and that’s why Snap-on is a good fit for him. Phil and Cruz have done a “Grill & Chill” event together with his customers, and he says he’ll have some of them here with him at the race this weekend. When he’s not at the track or running his Snap-on franchise, Phil is spending time with his family or doing mountain, road or cyclocross cycling.

Cruz Pedregon–Denver Advance

​NHRA® Team Report
Route 66 NHRA Nationals – Denver, CO

Pre-Race Report

The Funny Car race is on, and Cruz Pedregon and team are looking to advance from 10th place to an even higher spot in the 2017 National Championship Standings this weekend in Denver. “I’m a competitive guy, and so are my team members. We can’t wait for Denver. It’s one of the most difficult tracks on the NHRA circuit, but one of my favorites. Being live on FOX network is going to make it that much more fun,” Cruz says. “We’ve set a record in Denver before, and with the tuning on the car coming together the way we planned for it to, it should be a great weekend for the Snap-on Toyota.”

Crew Chief Aaron Brooks says, “We’re on the upward side of getting the car down the track the way we want, and our round-wins have come about the point in the season we expected them to. So, even with some lower temps and possible rain early in the weekend, we see Denver as the place we’ll move up in the Playoffs lead.”

On the side of Cruz’s car –

If you’ll check the side of Cruz’s car this week, you’ll see the name of Snap-on Nitro Franchisee Justin Aymond. Justin says every role model he’s had, including his dad, grandfather and uncle all used Snap-on tools, and Snap-on has been a part of his life…all of his life. He was a master mechanic prior to owning his Snap-on franchise and says “instead of buying the tools, I wanted to sell them” and help techs make their jobs easier. He held a contest for customers before this weekend’s race, and the 70-plus “giveaways” were tickets to see the Mile-High Nationals. To tell you how much he believes in the brand he represents, his cell-phone voice message is “Have a happy, Snappy day.”

Cruz Pedregon Chicago Advance

NHRA® Team Report

Route 66 NHRA Nationals – Chicago, IL

Pre-Race Report

It’s a big weekend for Cruz Pedregon and team as they head into Chicago working to hold on to a coveted spot in the playoffs. Chicago will mark Cruzer’s 1,000th NHRA round, a milestone for a driver who has grown up in the sport. “Drag racing is a calling for me, not just because it’s my family sport, but because it’s my passion. And, to be staging for the 1,000th time is a real thrill for me personally and professionally…it’s a real nod to our great sponsors who ensure we have the tools to bring this sport to its legions of fans and to the team that keeps the Snap-on Toyota tuned and ready each race,” says Cruz. “I’m looking forward to this weekend, especially since it’s the ‘home track’ of our primary sponsor Snap-on. They will be out here this weekend​,​ and we want to make it count.”

Crew Chief Aaron Brooks says, “We’ve got our eye on the prize, and that’s the playoff berth. Cruz set a track record here in 2015, and we believe we have the momentum to do it again. Each week, we’re seeing gains in the program and Chicago is where we plan to see it pay off.”

On the side of Cruz’s car –

This weekend, you’ll see the name of Snap-on Nitro Franchisee Eric Thomas. In his fifth year as a Franchisee, Eric learned about Snap-on working for the company that makes its mobile stores. Growing up enjoying racing, he used to focus on circle track and dirt racing…he even ran a drag car at a local track one season. His first NHRA race was right here in Joliet. Eric will be enjoying the race this weekend with a large group of friends and family.

Cruz Pedregon Norwalk Preview

NHRA® Team Report

NHRA Summit Racing & Equipment Nationals – Norwalk

Pre-Race Report

Cruz Pedregon and team are moving the points needle in the right direction heading to Norwalk in the number 10 Funny Car spot. “The Snap-on Toyota is responding well on a hot track, something we’ve known about the car for years. But, we’ve made enough changes since last year that we’re working hard to see it even out and respond well under any condition,” says Cruz. “We’re seeing solid runs out of the car, which helps us focus and set our sights on winning a race and moving up in the rankings.”

Crew Chief Aaron Brooks says, “The team and I would love to help Cruz bring home a first-time Norwalk race win. He’s got 35 career wins, and Norwalk would make a nice 36th. It’s a great track, with great fans, and, with the program we’re building, we are confident our best races are ahead of us this season.”

Name on the side of Cruz’s car – Norwalk

On the side of Cruz’s car this weekend, you’ll see the name of Snap-on Nitro Franchisee Doug Poole. He’s known to some in the region as “The Legend,” after 29 years in his Snap-on franchise business. He says his work isn’t selling tools…it’s helping people. He was a drummer for a rock band in his early career and a mechanic, following in the footsteps of his grandfather, who was a body man at a Studebaker plant. His Dad is still wrenching. He surprised his Dad this Father’s Day with his dream car…a 1964 Ford Galaxy.

Cruz Pedregon–Thunder Valley Nationals – Bristol Pre-Race Report

NHRA® Team Report

Thunder Valley Nationals – Bristol

Pre-Race Report

A quarter-final finish is what Cruz and team needed heading into Thunder Valley this weekend. The momentum is moving in the right direction according to Cruz, “We stopped in Indy to take a closer look at the clutch issue that kept us from going past the second round in Englishtown. So, look for us to have a better handle on that in Bristol. We’re seeing the other changes we’ve made throughout the season beginning to pay off, and we’re just seven points away from a place in the Countdown. We’ve really come a long way since the start of the season.”
Continue reading Cruz Pedregon–Thunder Valley Nationals – Bristol Pre-Race Report

NHRA– Epping Preview–Cruz Pedregon

NHRA® Team Report

New England Nationals – Epping, NH

Pre-Race Report

Cruz Pedregon is headed to the New England Nationals encouraged by a career best run in Kansas where a 3.88-second run at 326 and an earlier 3.92 at 324 showed more of what he believes the team and Snap-on Toyota are capable of. “The team is committed to ‘smart’ racing, getting the car down the track consistently and closer to that first win of the season,” Cruz says. “After these really good recent passes, we’re excited to see what the Snap-on Toyota can do for the crowd at Epping and the great NHRA fans watching on FOX.” Continue reading NHRA– Epping Preview–Cruz Pedregon

Cruz Pedregon Kansas Advance

NHRA® Team Report

NHRA Heartland Nationals – Topeka

Pre-Race Report

The Snap-on Toyota has been going through the rigors of testing prior to the race in Topeka this weekend. Something unique about these test runs is not having Cruz Pedregon, the team’s owner and driver, behind the wheel. With changes made after the Atlanta race, the team took advantage of having another licensed Funny Car driver in the Pedregon family to fill in during the runs. Cruz’s brother Tony, a long-time NHRA driver turned FOX Sports commentator, obliged the team by filling in for the runs and marked a career best 3.97.

“It was important to Aaron (Brooks – crew chief) to try out some of the changes we made before we loaded the car for Kansas, and it worked out well to have Tony available, approved and ready to drive the Snap-on Toyota for us while testing near the shop in Indy. I wouldn’t let just anyone drive my race car,” said Pedregon. “Every run this season we’ve been collecting data, and we’re going into Topeka ready to see the winning results we’ve been working towards.

Crew Chief Aaron Brooks says, “Having your driver 2,000 miles away when you need to test does present a challenge, but not one we couldn’t overcome. Just like with the car, we’ve had our challenges this year, but we’re confident the work we’ve done over the past weeks will pay off.”

Cruz has had four previous Topeka wins and set a track record at Heartland Park in 2012.

On the Side of Cruz’s Car – Topeka

Local Snap-on Franchisee Rick Nichols is this week’s Nitro Franchisee. Rick enjoys being his own boss and says he loves supplying customers with “the best tools and the best service.” He’s a pro stock fan, even doing some of his own Quick 8’s racing in Kansas City and Topeka. He likes Funny Car, too, and spent time getting Cruz’s autograph at the races before. This weekend, Rick will get to be in the pit with Cruz, and it will be HIS name of the side of the Snap-on Toyota.

Cruz Pedregon– NHRA Southern Nationals Advance

NHRA® Team Report

NHRA Southern Nationals

Pre-Race Report

After some promising testing results, Cruz Pedregon and team are heading to Atlanta. “The testing we just completed is going to pay off for us in Atlanta. I put down a career best time earlier this week with the changes we made, so we’re excited to see what car will do for us in the weekend ahead,” said Cruz. “We pushed the Snap-on on Toyota during the 4-wide and made some adjustments, but knew testing would offer up some good information before we took on the Atlanta Dragway,” said Pedregon.

Crew Chief Aaron Brooks says, “We’re really proud of what we got out the testing Monday, and we’re confident it’s going to be valuable for Atlanta and beyond. The weather is something we’re watching closely, since it’s supposed to be quite a bit cooler in Georgia. Come out to the track or watch the NHRA race coverage on FOX, because we’re expecting big things from Cruz and the car.”

On the Side of Cruz’s Car – Atlanta

Local Snap-on Franchisee Anthony Christ is this week’s Nitro Franchisee. Celebrating two years as a Snap-on franchisee, Anthony is a previous mastertech who was looking for the perfect career opportunity. The advances in tools and technology really intrigued him, and he found out more about the business from his own Snap-on franchisee. He’s a racing fan, and will be at the track this weekend. But when he’s not working or watching racing, you’ll find him enjoying the great outdoors.

Cruz Pedregon Charlotte Advance

NHRA® Team Report

NHRA 4-Wide Nationals – Charlotte

Pre-Race Report

Cruz Pedregon and team are headed to the Charlotte NHRA 4-Wide Nationals energized after the best weekend of the season for the team and a new career-best 3.897-second pass.

“It’s taking time for things to come together during the early part of the season, but our hard work is starting to pay off,” said Pedregon. “Charlotte will be race number six for this collective team, and we knew early on it would take five or six races to get things moving in our direction. We’re feeling really confident about the way things are going.”

Crew Chief Aaron Brooks says, “We’re ready to be in one of the top spots again this weekend, because it sure felt good in Houston. We think the 4-Wide is a race everyone should experience at least once in a lifetime, and we plan to be part of the good things happening for fans to see Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the track in Charlotte.”

“Charlotte’s been a winner for us before, and we ran a 3.9 there last year, so watch for big things to come from the Snap-on Toyota,” Cruz says.

On the Side of Cruz’s Car – Charlotte

Local Snap-on Franchisee Dwayne Shivers is this week’s Nitro Franchisee. Dwayne’s been working hard as a Snap-on franchisee for the past nine years, but on weekends, he’s driving something other than his Snap-on mobile store. Dwayne is a “die hard” racing fan who has been bracket racing in the point series at his nearby track for almost 25 years. He’ll be here with customers and friends and taking pictures with Cruz in the pits.

Tim Allison Checks In

This past weekend was our first race out for the 2017 season and the weather was great! We had 24 cars on opening night and the track was super fast. We drew lucky 21 to qualify in group 5 and we qualified 2nd quick and then the scoring system decided to quit working so we had to go back to the old pill draw method again. So instead of staring up front on a fast race track, we would start 5th in the first heat race and with a wide open track and no passing hardly, we finished 6th in our heat race.
So for the feature we would start in the 13th position with a lot of work cut out to get to the front.On a fast track the initial start was great as we came out running 6th and wouldn’t you know it, a guy stopped on the track and we had a total restart. The second restart did not go as well and we worked our way up to the 7th position toward the end of the race. We ended up 9th when it was all said and done, so not bad. We went forward and brought the car home in one piece for the first night out. We will improve this week coming up and we will be at Limaland Motorsports Park on Friday night! !
thank you so much for all your continued help and support!! have a great day!

Cruz Pedregon Looks Toward Las Vegas

NHRA® Team Report

NHRA Nationals – Las Vegas

Pre-Race Report

After another round of testing yielding positive results, Cruz Pedregon and Team are Las Vegas bound. “Testing in Gainesville went well, and we ran a 3.98 at 316 mph, so we’re getting the Snap-on Funny Car where we want it to be,” says Cruz. “We are continuing to build a good database of runs for Aaron (Brooks) to work from.”

Crew Chief Aaron Brooks says, “We’ve been purposeful with testing, and we’re seeing good information we can use heading into what we hope will be a ‘wheelie-less’ Las Vegas race.” Brooks is referring to the history-making 700-foot+ wheelie the Snap-on Toyota registered with Cruz safely at the helm last fall at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

El Chingon, the “wheelie car,” sustained enough damage to retire it, so fans can expect to see El Guapo, “the handsome one,” on the track this weekend.

On the Side of Cruz’s Car – Las Vegas

Check out Cruz’s car to see the name of Las Vegas-native and Snap-on Franchisee Steven Herd. Steven was an automotive technician prior to becoming a Snap-on franchisee a year ago. He says he “absolutely loves” working for himself and values the relationships he has with his customers. Steven’s been known to run some wheelies of his own when spending time four-wheeling. This weekend, he’ll be here at the track with his wife and son and spending some time with Cruz and the team.