(Chris Haverly photo)

Brad Personett arrived in Charlotte this past weekend with a new sub-title attached to his name—U.S. Nationals winner.

When Joe Baker was unable to stage beside him for the Get Screened America (GSA) Pro Mod final at O’Reilly Raceway Park (ORP) in Indianapolis, Personett made a solo run with his twin-tubocharged ’68 Camaro to score his career-first win in the 56th annual Mac Tools NHRA U.S. Nationals presented by Lucas Oil. It also represented the first-ever NHRA pro class win for a turbo-boosted entry.    

“I started (racing turbo cars) with Nero and Bottle (Deliwala) in the Titan Motorsports deal in ’04 and ’05 when it was just a matter of figuring out what else could go wrong, what else could we screw up. So now that things are finally coming around and going the right direction it’s really kind of gratifying,” the native Hoosier said of his historic turbocharged triumph.

That more than 20 close friends and family members were able to share the experience made the win that much sweeter, he added, plus it came on the 80th birthday of his maternal grandmother, Anne Farrell.

“She wasn’t there to see it, but I know she was just as excited and happy for me as everyone who was,” said Personett, who now lives in Orlando, but continues to operate the team out of his father’s race shop in Elkhart, where he grew up.

“Being from Indiana with all the family and friends and everything that goes on and everyone wanting attention and wanting to be there for you and be a part of it, that’s all great, but holy-moly, it’ll drive you into the ground. They were all getting more excited with each round, but I just had to kind of go through my routine.”