After a strong final-round appearance in Richmond last weekend, Cruz Pedregon -- the 1992 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series Funny Car world champion - and his Advance Auto Parts team are headed back to Las Vegas for next week's NHRA ACDelco Las Vegas Nationals at The Strip.  Cruz won The Strip's NHRA Nationals in April and is looking to head back to familiar territory - victory lane - on Oct. 29.

Pedregon moved to ninth place in the 2006 NHRA point standings after Richmond and is looking forward to another good performance in Las Vegas in order to move up in the standings and create a solid foundation for a championship run in 2007.

"The Advance Auto Parts Team is really looking forward to going back to Vegas, for sure," Pedregon said.  "It's where we won our last race, and you always like going back to where you have had success in the past.  We've got every bit as good of a car as we had in April, if not better.  Throughout the summer, because of various things we have learned, we've actually developed a better, faster car than we had in the spring.  We are in much better shape now than we were earlier in the season.  We're confident we can go to Las Vegas, do well, and continue our strong season-ending effort." 

During his rookie season in NHRA Funny Car racing in 1992, Pedregon won the NHRA world championship.  With this accomplishment he became the only racer besides John Force to win a Funny Car championship in the '90s.  In 1997, Pedregon also was the first motorsports athlete to receive the "Premio De Oro," the only national award for Hispanic athletes.   Born into a racing family, Pedregon's father, Frank, raced Top Fuel dragsters in the 1960s.  His brothers Tony and Frank also compete in the Nitro Funny Car ranks.  In 1980, Cruz won his first official drag race at the age of 15, driving a 1953 Kenworth truck.

Tickets for the Oct. 26-29 NHRA ACDelco Las Vegas Nationals may be purchased by calling the LVMS ticket office at (702) 644-4444 or online at