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‘This is epic’: Funny Car winner emerges out of stacked final — PHOTOS

Bob Tasca III said he felt the anticipation building Sunday entering the final round of the Funny Car eliminations at the NHRA Four-Wide Nationals.

Tasca was in a final round with Matt Hagan, Ron Capps, and Austin Prock — three of the other top Funny Car drivers on the NHRA circuit — with the win on the line at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

“This is epic. You got to get up for it,” Tasca said. “Your team’s got to get up for it, your crew has got to do its job, and… you get goosebumps for me. It’s a big moment. You have to rise to the occasion.”

Tasca did just that. He narrowly beat his other three competitors to the line with a time of 3.915 seconds at 329.75 mph to claim his second career win at LVMS. He edged Prock in a photo finish.

“That can definitely go down as one of the greatest drag races in Funny Car of all time,” Tasca said.

Top Fuel’s Doug Kalitta (3.715 seconds, 333.58 mph) was the fastest after the first two days of qualifying by winning the final round of his class. Pro Stock’s Jeg Coughlin Jr. (6.616, 207.18) beat a pair of teammates in his final round for his first win in his class since 2020.

“That was a big round in front of the world,” Tasca said. It was a perfect racetrack, no excuses, and you got to go now and get the trophy. It’s the driver, the crew, and the package. We came out on top in this race. It gives you a lot of confidence.”

Tasca said he told his team to have a conservative approach this weekend, with the two fastest drivers in each group of four advancing to the next round of eliminations.

His team listened to him for just a round. Tasca ended Friday as the fastest in his class after beating the top time posted by Prock in the second round of qualifying. Prock topped Tasca’s time in Saturday’s qualifying.

“It’s hard to win an NHRA race when you’re racing one person in the finals,” Tasca said. “When racing three people in the finals, do you know how hard it is to win this race? In the final round, a four-wide victory, it’s the hardest race.”

Last year’s Top Fuel champion, Doug Kalitta, was the fastest in his class after qualifying on both days. In his team’s second event in a new car, Kalitta carried that speed Sunday through all three elimination rounds.

“It was a matter of time before we got more runs with that thing,” Kalitta said. I’m pretty excited about what we’ve got in the second race with this car, and we’ll definitely try to build on it.”

Contact Alex Wright at awright@reviewjournal.com. Follow @AlexWright1028 on X.

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