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CHANDLER, Ariz. (April 03, 2024) – Behind the wheel of his SCAG Power Equipment Ford Mustang Funny Car, Daniel Wilkerson will make his first pass as a driver down Firebird Motorsports Park at this weekend’s NHRA Arizona Nationals, the third of 20 events on the Mission Foods NHRA Drag Racing Series season schedule.

Despite not having driven Firebird Motorsports Park, formerly Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park, as a crew chief, Wilkerson led Chad Green to a No.5 qualifying position and ultimately semifinal finish at the Arizona Nationals in 2023. He’s also watched his father and now crew chief of the SCAG Ford Funny Car, Tim, navigate the track wearing the hat of both crew chief and driver on numerous occasions.

“It’s cool to be coming back to Arizona. You know last year they said it was going to be the final event, the ‘final pass’ so I’m happy that circumstances changed, and a new opportunity came up that allows us to be racing back at the facility,” Wilkerson said. “I’m excited to get my first lap in on Friday. I’ve been to Phoenix plenty, I know the track, but I’ve never driven it.”

Wilkerson and the SCAG team have started the season with some new equipment and while they’ve been working to get their set up just right, they’ve had two race weekends they’re ready to put far in the rearview. Wilkerson qualified 13th at the season opening NHRA Gatornationals and 11th the NHRA Winternationals both resulting in first round exits.

“I know my dad [crew chief Tim Wilkerson] has a handle on things. His experience both behind the wheel and tuning will be our advantage this season,” Wilkerson said. “Once we find the sweet spot on this SCAG Ford Mustang, which is going to come sooner rather than later, we’ll be golden.”

Nitro competition at the NHRA Arizona Nationals begins with three rounds of qualifying Friday at 4:30 p.m. and Saturday at noon and 3:00 p.m. Eliminations are slated for Sunday at 11:00 a.m. Television coverage of the event will be on FOX Sports 1 (FS1) beginning with qualifying shows Friday at 9:30 p.m. and Sunday at 10:30 a.m. ET. Eliminations for the NHRA Arizona Nationals will air Sunday at 6:30 p.m. ET.

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