It all came down to the final race of the 2011 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series in Pomona, California this weekend. Matt Hagan drove his Sears DieHard-sponsored Charger R/T to a Funny Car World Championship, defeating Cruz Pedregon in the semifinals and then went on to defeat Robert Hight in the final round to win the event. As part of Don Schumacher Racing (DSR), Matt captured the first championship for a Dodge Funny Car since DSR driver Gary Scelzi brought home the 2005 NHRA Funny Car crown.
Hagan and his crew stepped up their game by qualifying No. 1 and defeating Jon Capps in the opening round. In the quarterfinals Hagan took out fellow DSR driver and Charger pilot Jack Beckman, who was also in the hunt for the championship, motoring to a 4.107/307.55 run to Beckmans4.142/310.27. Hagan then knocked off Pedregon to clinch the title and eliminate the sour taste in his mouth from the 2010 NHRA Finals at Pomona, in which the championship slipped from his grasp on the final day of the season.
It really is truly amazing this weekend to win the event and the race. We had some phenomenal things happen this year and to win is amazing. I hate the phrase you have to lose one to win one, but that really happened here, said a jubilant Hagan.