Last season, Top Fuel driver Greg Carrillo competed in only three NHRA Mello Yello Series events.
However, he took advantage of his opportunities highlighted by his semifinal performance at the Arizona Nationals last February at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park in Chandler.
In only his second career Top Fuel start, Greg Carrillo qualified No. 16 and then did the improbable upsetting multiple-time world champions Tony Schumacher and Antron Brown before having his Cinderella day end with a loss to Scott Palmer in the semifinals.
And now Carrillo is going to race again in 2019 with a simple approach.
“We’re laying back to see what we can do, but we’re going to improve our program ET and speed-wise, I can tell you that,” Carrillo said. “We’re going to make sure the car is quicker and faster every time we go out, which is what we have done.”
Last season at the October race at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway he ran a career-best 3.912-second elapsed time at 315.42 mph.
“At Vegas, I had to run a career-best run to qualify, which I did, then in first round I raced Clay Millican, and made my quickest run ever (3.912 seconds),” Carrillo said. “We have some sponsorship here and there and I’m just trying to improve my program to where we are very competitive and put on a good show and go from there. I had ExxonMobil – Mobil Delvac on the car and TA Truck Series on the car in Vegas and at Bandimere Speedway in Denver we had Santiago’s Mexican Restaurant on the car. I ran a career-best with Exxon Mobil on the car when they were my primary sponsor in Las Vegas and I’m looking to work with them again.”
Carrillo didn’t have a set race schedule for himself – it is a work in progress.
“We went to the semifinals in Phoenix last year and we have some things we are working for Phoenix this year,” Carrillo said. “We ran a five-disc combination and we are going to the six-disc. We have to lighten the car up a little bit and last year we qualified everywhere we went, and we want to qualify a lot better. The cool thing last year is we were able to pull rabbits out of the hat and we showed what we could do. We have good help when we go out and we want to be a solid team. We’re going to race the car. The car isn’t going to race us. What that means is that I’m not going out there to try and perform.”
Carrillo spent years racing in the Super Comp and Super Gas ranks, winning multiple national events and NHRA division titles. He made his Top Fuel debut last year at the 2017 Mile-High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway in Morrison, Colo.
“When you have won races like I have before you’re used to it, but in Top Fuel it is a big task to try and win,” Carrillo said. “You’re going against these big guys and nobody cares if you’re a big guy or little guy. When you pull to the starting line you have to get it done.”
“We’re definitely going to show them what we can do and see if they want to be a partner,” Carrillo said.
— Competition Plus (@competitionplus) January 4, 2019