• Residence: Christiansburg, Va.
• Hometown: Christiansburg, Va.
• Date of birth: Nov. 18, 1982
• Wife: Rachel
• Children: Colby, Penny
• Height/weight: 6-foot-1, 210 pounds
• Hobbies: Hunting, fishing, four-wheeling
• Social media: twitter.com/MattHagan_FC, facebook.com/MattHaganFC, mopar.com, RockyBoots.com
• Category: Funny Car
• Sponsor/car: Mopar/Rocky Boots Dodge Charger R/T
• Team owner: Don Schumacher
• Career event titles: 5
• Career final rounds: 15
• Career No. 1 qualifying positions: 10
• Career best elapsed time: 3.995 (Charlotte 2, 2011)
• Career best speed: 322.27 (Charlotte 2, 2011)
• 2011 NHRA Funny Car world champion
• Owns and operates a 1,000-acre cattle farm in rural Virginia
• All-district center on Auburn (Va.) High School football team
• Drove a 172-mph drag boat in 2012
• Drove a Monster Truck in 2012
• Father David Hagan owns Shelor Motor Mile new car dealerships and the Motor Mile Speedway short-track and drag strip in Radford, Va.
Matt Hagan captured the 2011 NHRA Funny Car Championship for Don Schumacher Racing in just his third full season competing in one of drag racing’s top two categories.
En route to the 2011 championship, Matt qualified No. 1 three times, earned two wins – Charlotte and Pomona – and set a national elapsed time record at 3.995 seconds, which was the first sub four-second run in Funny Car history.
Unfortunately for Matt, history did not repeat or come close in 2012.
After remarkable seasons in 2010 and 2011, the Christiansburg, Va., cattle farmer was unable to recover from a slow start despite making a valiant comeback near the end of the following season in his Aaron’s/Mopar Dodge Charger R/T.
Despite high expectations, his team suffered five first-round losses and did qualify for another race over the first eight events of the season.
But DSR and Matt vow for 2013 to look more like 2011.
Matt will start the season with a new crew chief will start with momentum after rebounding to be one of the strongest Funny Cars over the last 10 NHRA events when he advanced to four championship rounds and three semifinals.
Despite his hard charge, Matt missed making the top-10 by seven points and did not qualify for the NHRA Countdown to the Championship playoff.
Matt has rallied for disappointed before. After missing the Countdown and finishing the season 11th in points, he nearly won the championship in 2010. He narrowly lost the championship by less than two elimination-round wins to John Force. That year, Matt set elapsed-time records twice, the top-speed record en route to winning three event titles in six final-round appearances. His win near Houston was his first in an NHRA Funny Car.
During the spring event at zMAX Dragway in Charlotte, N.C., in 2012, Matt suffered a major explosion caused by a part failure that sent his Aaron’s Dream Machine carbon fiber Funny Car body into the air in many pieces.
Visibly frustrated, Matt climbed out of the car uninjured, tossing pieces of the car aside. The video went viral and was viewed more than 30 million times across the world including in England, Ireland, Spain, Australia and Africa. Hagan also interviewed with BBC radio and television.
In 2009, Matt joined DSR and as a rookie he made it to a pair of final rounds and earned two No. 1 qualifying positions to earn a nomination for the Auto Club Road to the Future award as the pro rookie of the year.
In 2008, Matt tested the NHRA Funny Car waters at four events and qualified No. 1 at the U.S. Nationals near Indianapolis. His early success caught the eye of team-owner Don Schumacher, who called to congratulate Matt after making the cut at the year’s most prestigious event. That conversation and Matt’s ability led to Schumacher hiring him full time for 2009.
Matt was a proven talent in Pro Modified when jumped behind the wheel of a Funny Car sponsored by Shelor.com, his family’s automobile business Shelor Motor Mile in Christiansburg.
As an owner/driver, he had great success in IHRA competition where he placed third in the Funny Car category where he amassed a class-best three event wins.
Matt has been racing for almost half his life. Starting on his family’s quads as a teenager in Virginia, he developed a passion for speed and the thrill of competition to move into circle-track, stock car racing. From them, he began bracket drag racing and later made a huge splash in Pro Mod, earning the 2006 Rookie-of-the-Year honor in the NHRA AMS Pro Mod Challenge.
When not rustling his 8,000-horsepower Funny Car, Matt spends his days on his 1,000-acre cattle farm in Christiansburg where raises more than 400 head of cattle and grows their feed.
Matt is hands-on and can handle every chore on his spread.
He also is an avid hunter and loves spending early morning in a tree stand on his property hunting for deer. He likes to take a couple trips each year out of state to hunt deer and ducks.
If his bounty is too much for family and friends to consume, he shares the meat with groups helping unemployed around his Virginia home.
Matt was an all-around athlete at Auburn High School where he was a defensive lineman and all-district center on the Eagles football team. In the spring, he was the school’s catcher.
He attended Radford University for four years and studied majored in recreation, parks and tourism.
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