Share Download Print Daniels Powers to first NHRA Dodge HEMI® Challenge Pole at U.S. Nationals Three-time consecutive and defending NHRA Dodge HEMI® Challenge champion Jimmy Daniels races 1968 Dodge Dart to No. 1 qualifier position Stephen Comella qualifies his 1968 Plymouth Barracuda second in field of 20 entries 2017 and 2018 No. 1 qualifier and 2018 race runner-up Gary Wolkwitz qualifies third NHRA Dodge HEMI Challenge parade and elimination rounds set for Friday, August 31 at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis Drivers to compete for $15,000 winner’s purse and iconic HEMI Challenge Trophy August 29, 2019 , Indianapolis - After making the fifth-best quarter-mile pass in Wednesday’s opening qualifying session for the 19th annual NHRA Dodge HEMI Challenge, three-time consecutive and reigning champion Jimmy Daniels couldn’t wait to make his second and final qualifying run Thursday afternoon. The 23-year-old driver delivered the best run of the day powering his Super Stock 1968 Dodge Dart to earn his first career No. 1 qualifier position at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis. “I didn’t really think getting that No. 1 position was really possible with the warmer weather today,” said the Yardley, Penn. native, who will vie for his record-setting fourth straight triumph Friday. “We really worked on it coming into today. For us to come back tomorrow and win another Dodge HEMI Challenge, it’s going to take a lot of consistency, a lot of fine tuning by Ray and Dave Barton and I have to do a good job on the tree.” Now in its 19th year, the HEMI Challenge contested during the NHRA U.S. Nationals continues to showcase Mopar-powered 1968 Dodge Dart and Plymouth Barracuda Super Stock cars. Drivers compete for the iconic 42.6-pound NHRA Dodge HEMI Challenge trophy and $15,000 winner’s purse awarded after Friday’s elimination rounds. Daniels held the fifth position following Wednesday’s first qualifying session and admitted some minor adjustments were needed today in order to claim the top spot. Daniels was spot on in the left lane Thursday afternoon after clocking a run of 8.473 to edge Wednesday’s provisional pole holder Steve Comella, who’s run of 8.480 seconds in his 1968 Plymouth Barracuda held up for the No. 2 spot. Comella’s 156.68 mph from Wednesday’s qualifying run topped the field. Gary Wolkwitz, last year’s runner-up and No. 2 qualifier, raced his Super Stock 1968 Dodge Dart to the No. 3 position ahead of Canadian runner Wendell Howes while inaugural 2001 HEMI Challenge winner Bucky Hess completed the top-five in his 1968 Plymouth Barracuda. Qualifying spots sixth through 10 are Doug Fazzolare, Jim Pancake, Rich Locker, Stephen Hebert and Gus Mantas. The field of HEMI Challenge cars will participate in a parade on Friday, August 30, prior to the first-round eliminations, with the championship final round slated for Friday evening, just before NHRA Nitro qualifying. The NHRA Dodge HEMI Challenge showcases Super Stock/A-HEMI (SS/AH) NHRA Sportsman class competitors battling on the quarter-mile in 1968 Mopar package cars, powered by the legendary 426 HEMI engine. The Dodge Dart and Plymouth Barracuda Super Stockers are one of the earliest and most iconic iterations of the purpose-built vehicles created at the factory. The cars feature distinct race packages and are for use solely on the drag strip. The Dodge Dart and Plymouth Barracudas are precursors to the modern-day package car — the Mopar Dodge Challenger Drag Pak. About Dodge//SRT Dodge//SRT offers a complete lineup of performance vehicles that stand out in their own segments. Dodge is America’s performance brand and SRT is positioned as the ultimate performance halo of the Dodge brand, together creating a complete and balanced performance brand with one vision and one voice. For more than 100 years, the Dodge brand has carried on the spirit of brothers John and Horace Dodge, who founded the brand in 1914. Their influence continues today. For 2020, Dodge literally expands its high-performance Charger model lineup, adding a Widebody exterior to America’s only four-door muscle car. Powered by the 707-horsepower supercharged 6.2-liter HEMI® Hellcat V-8 engine, the 2020 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat maintains its reign as the most powerful and fastest mass-produced sedan in the world. The 2019 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye is possessed by the Demon. Its 797-horsepower supercharged HEMI® high-output engine makes it the most powerful, quickest and fastest muscle car, reaching 0-60 miles per hour (mph) in 3.4 seconds, and the fastest GT production car with a ¼-mile elapsed time (ET) of 10.8 seconds at 131 mph. It also reaches a new top speed of 203 mph. Joining the Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye is the 2019 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat, with its more powerful 717-horsepower engine, and the Challenger R/T Scat Pack Widebody, featuring fender flares from the SRT Hellcat Widebody, which add 3.5 inches of width to the 485-horsepower Scat Pack’s standard body. Also new for 2019 is the Challenger R/T Scat Pak 1320 with exclusive drag strip technology from the iconic Dodge Challenger SRT Demon. The Challenger R/T Scat Pack 1320 is a drag-oriented, street-legal muscle car and a blank canvas for the serious grassroots drag racer. The 2019 Dodge Durango SRT, America’s fastest, most powerful and most capable three-row SUV with a best-in-class tow rating of 8,700 lbs., completes the brand's performance lineup. These visceral performance models join a 2019 brand lineup that includes the Durango, Grand Caravan, Journey, Charger and Challenger — a showroom that offers performance at every price point. Follow Dodge, SRT and FCA US news and video on: Company blog: http://blog.fcanorthamerica.com Media website: http://media.fcanorthamerica.com Dodge brand: www.dodge.com Dodge Garage: www.dodgegarage.com Facebook: www.facebook.com/dodge or https://www.facebook.com/FiatChrysler.NorthAmerica/ Instagram: www.instagram.com/dodgemoparmotorsports, www.instagram.com/dodgeofficial or www.instagram.com/FiatChrysler_NA Twitter: www.twitter.com/dodge or www.twitter.com/FiatChrysler_NA YouTube: www.youtube.com/dodge or www.youtube.com/fcanorthamerica About Mopar Mopar (a simple contraction of the words MOtor and PARts) is the service, parts and customer-care brand for FCA vehicles around the globe. Born in 1937 as the name of a line of antifreeze products, the Mopar brand has evolved over more than 80 years to represent both complete care and authentic performance for owners and enthusiasts worldwide. Mopar made its mark in the 1960s during the muscle-car era, with Mopar Performance Parts to enhance speed and handling for both road and racing use, and expanded to include technical service and customer support. Today, the Mopar brand’s global reach distributes more than 500,000 parts and accessories in over 150 markets around the world. With more than 50 parts distribution centers and 25 customer contact centers globally, Mopar integrates service, parts and customer-care operations in order to enhance customer and dealer support worldwide. Complete information on the Mopar brand is available at www.mopar.com. Mopar is part of the portfolio of brands offered by global automaker Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. For more information regarding FCA (NYSE: FCAU/ MTA: FCA), please visit www.fcagroup.com.