NHRA’s Four-Wide Nationals return to Concord

The National Hot Rod Association’s Four-Wide Nationals make their fifth pass at Concord’s zMax Dragway next weekend.

The NHRA’s unique event – four lanes are used instead of drag racing’s traditional two – begins with Friday and Saturday’s qualifying sessions and ends with finals on Sunday.

Four-wide racing has been a staple at the Concord dragway since 2010. Here’s an update on what’s been happening on the NHRA’s Mello Yello Drag Racing Series this season:

Top Fuel Dragster: Doug Kalita leads the standings by a healthy 73 points over Antron Brown. Defending-champion Shawn Langdon is languishing in seventh place without a victory. Tony Schumacher, who won at Las Vegas on March 30, is fourth, 150 points behind Kalita.

Funny Car: Alexis DeJoria leads the division with two victories, but is in third place behind Robert Hight and John Force. DeJoria’s victory at Las Vegas, coupled with a victory by Erica Enders-Stevens in the Pro Stock car division, was the second time in NHRA history two women had won pro classes in the same event. Force, incidentally, won his 16th Funny Car championship in 2013.

Pro Stock Car: Enders-Stevens’ victory at Las Vegas allowed her to take a 15-point lead in the standings over Jason Line. Allen Johnson, who has two victories this season, is third. The division has been without Charlotte’s Greg Anderson (a four-time champion), who has been out all season after undergoing heart surgery earlier this year. He hopes to return in a few weeks. Also, 2009 champ Mike Edwards isn’t competing this year after selling his entire racing operation in the offseason.

Pro Stock Motorcycle: Steve Johnson won at the season’s only race thus far (the Gatornationals in Gainesville, Fla.). Hector Arana Jr., last year’s four-wide winner, is third behind Johnson and Scotty Pollacheck.