POMONA, CA (November 12, 2023) —- Completing her second season battling the toughest door-slammer competition in the country Camrie Caruso exited in the first round with her Powerbuilt Tools Tequila Comimsario Pro Stock Chevrolet Camaro at the In-N-Out NHRA Finals today. Through two days of qualifying Caruso steadily improved through four rounds of qualifying entering race day as the No. 9 qualifier. Twenty-two Pro Stock drivers were vying for 16 spots in the field. Caruso opened qualifying as the No. 14 driver after the first round and ended Saturday night sitting No. 9 with a solid 6.517 second pass after her previous two runs lit up the scoreboard in 6.518 seconds. The consistency of her Powerbuilt Tools Tequila Comisario Chevrolet Camaro had the third generation drag racer confident going into race day.
Camrie Caruso and Powerbuilt Tequila Comisario Chevrolet Camaro, photo credit NHRA/National Dragster
“We switched motors after Las Vegas and we saw immediate improvement,” said Caruso, who races with KB Titan Racing power under the hood. “I knew we had a race car that could compete with anyone. The conditions were pretty good and the track was fast. It was great to have the support of the KB Titan Racing team behind me this weekend and all year.”
Going into the opening round today Caruso drew No. 8 qualifier veteran driver Bob Butner, who she had a 5-0 career head-to-head record against coming into race day. She beat Butner earlier this year in Arizona at the Arizona Nationals on the way to her first Pro Stock victory and she also defeated him at the Thunder Valley Nationals, Mile High Nationals and Menard Nationals this season. Butner, knowing he needed a Herculean effort to get around Caruso, cut a nearly psychic .006 second reaction giving him just enough of an edge to get his first win over the 2022 NHRA Rookie of the Year. At the finish line Caruso’s 6.541 second pass at 210.11 mph wasn’t enough to get the win over Butner’s 6.549 second run at 210.31 mph.
“Bo was definitely ready for us and you aren’t going to beat tough competitors every run,” said Caruso. “We will keep working in the off season and we will be ready for Bo and all the competitors next year. I got a lot better this season, but I am still learning. This Powerbuilt Tools Tequila Comisario Chevrolet Camaro as a lot more wins in the future.”
At the end of the season Caruso made huge strides becoming just the second female to win a Pro Stock race and winning the first NHRA Pro Stock Allstar Callout race. Those two wins couple with the No. 1 qualifier effort at the historic Winternationals showed that Caruso was worthy of the Rookie of the year honors and future consideration for the Pro Stock world championship. Caruso picked up multiple round wins in the Countdown and showed that she will be a force to be reckoned with in future seasons.
“We made big strides this season and race day just didn’t go our way today,” said Caruso. “We won rounds in the Countdown which is not easy to do and we held our own against the competition. I hate that we didn’t win more rounds today, but I am going to learn from every race and get better in 2024. I want to thank all my sponsors from Powerbuilt Tools, Tequila Comisario, Big Jeff Audio, DENSO and VP Racing Lubricants for all their support.
Throughout the season Caruso received support from Powerbuilt Tools and Tequila Comisario as well as Right Trailers, Gallegos Family Racing, Popa Pools, SFG Promotions, True Brands, SACO Professionals and Genevieve Aesthetics in addition to Big Jeff Audio and DENSO. The marketing relationships were highlighted by at track hospitality as well as charity endeavors with the National Breast Cancer Foundation during the month of October. Caruso cultivated these relationships beginning in her rookie season and continued to grow then in 2023.
“We wouldn’t be able to be out here race after race without all our support team,” said Caruso. “My family are my biggest supporters but these companies big and small have helped us turn on win lights across the country. The biggest thing we have offered them is a solid return on their investment as well as a very positive fan and customer experience throughout the season. We are looking forward to expanding our role and also introducing more people to the Mission Foods Drag Racing Series in 2024.”
Caruso will start her 2024 season at the PRO Superstar Shootout at Bradenton Motorsports Park, February 8-10 and she will start her third season on the NHRA Mission Drag Racing Series at the historic Gatornationals at Gainesville Raceway, March 7-10.
Q1: 6.546 sec, 211.00 mph; Qual. 14
Q2: 6.518 sec, 210.54 mph; Qual. 8
Q3: 6.518 sec, 211.16 mph; Qual. 8
Q4: 6.517 sec, 211.33 mph; Qual. 9
Bonus Points: 0
Bo Butner, Johnson Horsepower Garage Chevrolet Camaro, (.006), 6.549, 210.31 mph def. Camrie Caruso, Powerbuilt Tools/Tequila Comisario Chevrolet Camaro, (.053), 6.541, 210.11 mph
Pro Stock Camping World Top Ten
1. Erica Enders 2695
2. Greg Anderson 2591
3. Matt Hartford 2564/2594
4. Aaron Stanfield 2509/2539
5. Troy Coughlin Jr 2450
6. Dallas Glenn 2446
7. Kyle Koretsky 2375
8. Deric Kramer 2332
9. Bo Butner 2301
10. Cristian Cuadra 2293
11. Camrie Caruso 2286