GAINESVILLE, Fla. --
Sun, 18 Mar 2018, 20:22 PM
Smith Victorious in First Pro Mod Event of 2018 Season at Gainesville
Courtesy of NHRA Communications
Photo copyright 2018 Auto Imagery, Inc.
Rickie Smith celebrates his 12th Pro Mod win.
Rickie Smith drove to victory Sunday during the E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series
presented by J&A Service portion of the Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals at Gainesville
Dragway. This weekend's Pro Mod racing, presented by Jerry Bickel Race Cars, is the first of 12
events this season.
Smith ran a 5.794-second pass at 249.76 mph in his Chevrolet Camaro to take down Mike Janis in the
final round and earn his first victory since Englishtown in 2017 and the 12th of his career. Smith
defeated Bob Rahaim, Jim Whiteley and Mike Castellana on his way to the win.
"To be able to come out here after not having a sponsor all winter and not knowing what we were
going to do this season and then end up getting a win in the first race is really special," Smith
said. "I started winning championships in 1976, and to keep winning races at this age is just
Janis secured the fifth runner-up finish of his Pro Mod career, as he chases his first victory
since the 2015 season.
Smith finished the 2017 season ninth in the standings and leaves the season-opening event as the
points leader in pursuit of his fifth championship.
The E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by J&A Service continues at the NHRA
SpringNationals in Houston, Tex. on April 20-22.
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