Let the celebration begin.
Jason Line’s last NHRA victory came last fall at Charlotte, but the Minnesota native ended that drought Sunday, Aug. 18, with a final round victory over Erica Enders to win the Lucas Oil Nationals Pro Stock Walley at Brainerd International Raceway.
While its not his first Lucas Oil Nationals, it is the first time the guy from Wright, Minn., was able to hoist the trophy up high in front of his hometown fans.
“As you get older you realize these moments are going to be fewer and farther between and less chance of them happening,” Line said. “It is very special now, but I know it will be more so later on. Super excited and a great weekend and a fun day.
“My dad likes streaks and he makes a big deal about the fact that I have won a race every year that I have raced in Pro Stock and he puts a lot of pressure on me to make sure that continues so to do that in front of him is really cool.”
Line’s last Lucas Oil victory actually happened in Indy as the BIR final was postponed because of weather.
Line dominated qualifying as he held the No .1 spot after both Friday and Saturday. But Enders qualified No. 2.
“We had a great car and mine and Erica’s were head and shoulders above everybody else which means it is a hundred or two hundredths better than everyone which really means nothing,” Line said. “It doesn’t leave you a lot of room for error. I made one error today, but I was fortunate to get by with it.”
The two drivers met twice in 2019 with Enders winning in the second round in Phoenix and Line winning in the second round in Vegas.
Enders grabbed the lead by two thousandths of a second off the tree, running in the right lane, but Line closed that gap quickly to lead by 12 hundreds of a second at the 60-foot mark. He the margin to 6.597 - 6.604, running at a speed of 209.10 miles per hour.
“My goal is not to leave first against her, my goal is to be close,” Line said of Enders. “She is quicker than I am. I have my moments, but she is as good as anybody ever as far as letting her left foot out and I don’t care who it is. She is good as there ever has been so my goal is to get close to her and hope we can out-run her.”
Line’s hands were full with Wally Stroupe in the opening round. Strope won the battle off the light tree, but Line closed the gap to win with a time of 6.589, which was just 12 tenths of a second better than Stroup. In the second round, Line faced No. 9 qualifier Alex Laughlin, who upset Line’s teammate Greg Anderson in the opening round. Line ran an ET of 6.583 to 6.610 to advance to the semifinals against 2018 BIR champion Deric Kramer. Kramer red lit off the start and Line just needed to make it down the strip, which he did with an ET of 6.590 to gain a birth in the finals.
Enders started her journey to the finals with an opening-round win against Shane Tucker. Chris McGaha was her second-round opponent and Enders lowered her reaction time off the tree to just .015 and went on to win by a margin of .029 to advance to the semifinals against Matt Hartford.
Line Summit Racing team leaves for Indiannapolis with a spot clinched for the Countdown. And Line won’t have to field any more questions about how he feels never having won a Pro Stock final at his home track.
“The question definitely got old,” Line said. “You want to win here in front of your friends and family. As fun as it is for me it’s probably as much for them and to see how happy they are it makes it super special.”