Making a championship run in the PDRA Pro Nitrous class is an intense task — it requires a fast car that’s consistent throughout the season. Jason Harris won the 2018 Pro Nitrous title by having one of the most consistent cars in the class and carrying a lot of momentum throughout the year. Harris begins his title defense at the PDRA East Coast Nationals with a focus on ensuring his Camaro will run fast no matter the conditions.
In 2018 Harris kicked off his season with a big win at the U.S. Street Nationals in the Pro Mod category. He has started 2019 in a similar fashion after a win at the World Outlaw Nationals at Orlando Speed World. Winning early in the year can set the stage for a Pro Mod team to carry a lot of positive momentum through a long season of racing.
“Any time you can start the year off with a big win it helps. We did the same thing last year when we won the U.S. Street Nationals and that just rolled us into the PDRA season with a lot of momentum. Once you get into a routine of winning everything starts to fall into place and it helps you stay positive with your program,” Harris says.
Another hallmark of a top-flight Pro Mod program is the need to constantly find ways to improve. After winning the Pro Nitrous title in 2018 with a consistent car that seemed to always be in the top five during qualifying, Harris and his team wanted to find a way to improve on the overall numbers of his car for the new season.
“We went into Orlando this year with the mindset of trying to improve our 60- and 330-foot times to make the car even more consistent through tuning. I think that consistency is our strong suit and we wanted to carry that forward this season. We see a lot of different conditions during the year with the tight tracks in the spring, and the greasy tracks later in the year so we have to be ready. Part of our game-plan for this year is to be fast on all these different tracks throughout the season,” Harris explains.
Winning a title is one thing, but the true test of a champion is if you can defend the title after you’ve earned it. Harris knows that wearing that number one on your car can be a blessing and a curse at the same time. He’s coming into 2019 ready to defend his title against the toughest group of nitrous Pro Mod racers in the world.
“Well, that number one is a target no matter who you are — it’s like a giant bullseye and people come after you. I also think it can win you some rounds because people try to take a swing against you and miss because they know you’re the best. I think it’s going to be a very tough and competitive season because there are so many good teams out there. Anybody in the PDRA top 10 can win at any time so you have to be ready for every round of racing,” Harris says.
The East Coast Nationals at GALOT Motorsports Park could produce some big numbers from the Pro Nitrous class. Harris understands that an average performance won’t take him far at the first event and this could be a tough year in the Pro Nitrous class with new teams stepping into the mix.
“I think you’re going to see some low numbers and a record broken possibly with really tight racing. There could be a lot of new faces that come out and run towards the front with new equipment for their programs. You’ll always have the fast cars that run at the front but those new guys are going to be faster. There are going to be some teams that win this year that haven’t won before, as well,” Harris says.
The PDRA East Coast Nationals is going to light up GALOT Motorsports Park with great racing April 5-6. If you can’t be in Benson, North Carolina to see the racing, SpeedVideo will have it all live RIGHT HERE. This broadcast is brought to you by presenting sponsor COMP Cams along with Driven Racing Oil, SpeedWire, ATI Performance Products, Flying A Motorsports, SCT, and Jerry Bickel Race Cars.