Summit Racing driver Greg Anderson added yet another milestone win to his storied career on Sunday, capturing the KB Racing team’s 100th Pro Stock victory and returning the Chevrolet Camaro to a Full Throttle Drag Racing Series winner’s circle by taking home the title at the NHRA SuperNationals in Englishtown, N.J. Starting from the sixth position, Anderson defeated Ron Krisher, Mike Edwards and Allen Johnson in the early rounds before squaring off against teammate Jason Line in the final.
The Summit Racing duo has historically had some of the closest races in the category’s history, and Sunday’s encounter was shaping up to be yet another as the two left the starting line as if welded together. Although Line seemed to be gaining an edge as the two rocketed down the quarter-mile, his progress was suddenly slowed by a rare mechanical malfunction, allowing Anderson to use a 6.560-second, 212.03 mph pass to gain the historic win, an occasion made even more special by the presence of team owners Ken and Judy Black. It was the 74th win of Anderson’s career, fourth of 2012 and fifth at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park, making him the most successful Pro Stock driver in that track’s storied history.
“Once we both won in the semifinals, we were assured of KB Racing’s 100th win, so it was just a matter of which one of us would do it,” said Anderson. “It was something we both really wanted to accomplish, and to be honest, Jason was ahead of me by two hundredths when he broke a valve spring, or else he certainly would have won. It was unfortunate for him, and it’s a sad deal any time we hurt a motor, but it was a great day for Ken and Judy Black and everyone on the team.
“Winning an NHRA national event is not an easy task under any circumstance, so for a brand new car to come out and win in its very first race as we did today with our Summit Racing Camaro is a testament to the talent of the people on this KB Racing team. They’re an incredible group of guys, and it’s a great feeling to share the winner’s circle and take pictures with Ken and the entire crew, especially those who have been here for all 100 wins. It’s just a very special day for me.”
Although Anderson’s victory was not a certainty until he crossed the Raceway Park finish line on Sunday night, there was one very important person who had a premonition about today’s events almost two weeks ago. In fact, team owner Ken Black made a special trip from his home in Las Vegas to join the team in Englishtown just to ensure he would be on hand to not only see their new race car in its first race, but to also hopefully witness the milestone win, which ironically came at the same track where Anderson had recorded the team’s first Pro Stock victory during their first year of existence in 2002.
“A couple of weeks ago, I lost to Allen Johnson in the Topeka final,” recalled Anderson. “I thought I had a better car than he had, and I somehow had a better light than he did in the final, but my car shook the tires and we ended up losing the race.
"When I spoke to Ken later that night I told him that I thought it was a sign that he was supposed to be on hand for his team’s 100th win, and he responded by telling me he was coming to Englishtown. Traveling cross-country is a major effort for him, but he just had a feeling about this race, and fortunately, everything worked out perfectly.”
Further adding to Anderson’s accomplishment was the fact that he did it in a new and virtually untested race car. Since taking delivery just over a month ago, the team had worked feverishly to get it ready for competition, completing it just over a week ago. Following a brief two-day test session last week in North Carolina, they finished their pre-race preparation and headed north to the Garden State, where they would post the first Pro Stock win by a Chevrolet Camaro since the 2000 NHRA Finals in Pomona, Ca.
“We brought our new Summit Camaro to Englishtown with high hopes, but exceeded even those today,” said Anderson. “After all, with everything we had on the line this weekend, it was a bit of a gutsy call to bring a new car out for the first time this weekend, especially as I had just gone to a final in my old car.
“It was a tough decision, but we are so excited about General Motors’ getting back into Pro Stock with a true muscle car. We also felt that the sooner we could get that car on the racetrack, the better off both KB Racing and the class would be. We tested for a couple days last week, gained on it throughout qualifying, and then ran very well today.
“The Pro Stock class is fantastic right now. We have Mopars, Fords and General Motors cars, which were primarily Pontiacs up until now with the introduction of the Camaro, racing in arguably one of the most competitive classes in all of motorsports. I feel very fortunate to have been in General Motors cars for my entire career, and the future looks even brighter. If you think about GM and racing, it’s Chevrolet, and it feels great to get them their first win in their return to Pro Stock drag racing.”
Anderson was also quick to recognize those whose support had made today’s success possible. Finally, with another new car in the works for his teammate and the next race rapidly approaching, he admitted that any post-race celebrations would be kept to a minimum.
“Of course, we would not have been able to reach 100 wins without the support of several outstanding people and companies,” said Anderson. “Naturally, it all starts with Ken, Judy and Kenny Black, who started this team ten years ago. They mean everything to us. Also at the very top of the list is Summit Racing Equipment, who has been such a big part of our team for so many years. In addition, we want to thank Chevrolet, Red Line Oil, Cometic Gaskets, Mac Tools, PAC Valve Springs, Wilson Manifolds, Diamond Pistons, K&N Filters, Speed Dawg Shift Knobs, Oakley and everyone else whose involvement with our race team makes days like today possible. We are glad to share this win with all of them.
“This was certainly a storybook weekend, but with the next race only two weeks away, we won’t have a lot of time to enjoy it. We have to finish and test Jason’s Camaro so we can bring it out in Bristol, fix anything we broke this weekend as well as doing our normal pre-race preparation. It’s a full schedule, but today’s win will give us more than enough motivation.”