Compiled by SEMA Editors
ARMSTRONG PASSES AWAY: Legendary NHRA crew chief and mechanical wizard Dale Armstrong died November 28 from complications of sarcoidosis at his home in Temecula, California. He was 73. As a driver, Armstrong won 12 NHRA national events—including three victories at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals—with a series of alcohol-burning dragsters, funny cars and altereds during the ’70s, but the ’75 Pro Comp national champion and former nitro Funny Car national record holder is perhaps best known for his many mechanical and technological breakthroughs while serving as crew chief for Kenny Bernstein.
D. SCHUMACHER RECOVERING AT HOME, ON ROAD TO RECOVERY: Don Schumacher is resting at home after successful surgery Wednesday to treat cancer at the back of his tongue and two lymph nodes. The owner of Schumacher Electric Corp. and Don Schumacher Racing underwent a six-hour surgery for Stage 1 Squamous cell carcinoma at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. He is now continuing to recover at home before any further treatments are considered.
"I just want to thank everyone for their thoughts and prayers for me and my family," he said. "There are so many wonderful people in our sport, and I can't tell you how much you all mean to me."
T. SCHUMACHER LOOKS BACK AT HIS RECENT WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP: Tony Schumacher won a record eighth NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Top Fuel championship with his U.S. Army dragster, buoyed by three wins in the six races of the Countdown to the Championship. He took part in a recent NHRA champions teleconference to discuss his season and the championship.
He Said, She Said
"Going up for the flight is really awesome. They have all these practiced procedures and moves they do and it's like clockwork. Then before you know it, you're airborne. I was thinking I'd be somewhat familiar with G forces as we experience 4.5Gs during a run, but that's nothing compared to pulling 9Gs through a long turn. When Maj. Fisher was so calm going through all these moves, I was thinking how incredibly exceptional these men and women are. To handle all that the plane is doing and then carry out a mission at the same time is so mind-boggling. What would it be like to be in a firefight? Just crazy. I've never been more proud to be an American."
—Top Fuel teamowner and racer Morgan Lucas on taking a ride with the United States Air Force Thunderbirds recently. Lucas strapped into the F-16 for the opportunity and was able to join the elite 9G club during his thrilling ride.
Inside the Numbers
5: Number of first-round losses that Shawn Langdon suffered during the 2014 season. He had the fewest first-round exits of any competitor in the Top Fuel category. His career low in first-round losses is four, which he recorded in his championship season of 2013. This year, Langdon finished fourth in points, and it was the third consecutive season he has finished in the top five in points. He has also never finished outside the top 10 in points in his career.
Did You Know
NHRA RACERS TAKE PART IN OPERATION APPRECIATION: NHRA racers Jason Line, Greg Anderson, Eddie Krawiec and Andrew Hines, monster truck racer Dan Runte, NHRA announcer Alan Reinhart, along with Summit Racing Equipment dignitaries, are currently overseas visiting with American troops during Operation Appreciation. This long-running program is a way for the racers to give back to the troops who are protecting the country.
“I look forward to this trip. It isn’t very often that civilians are able to go behind the gates to say thank you to all of our troops who support us,” said NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle rider Eddie Krawiec. “They put their lives on the line, and this is just a small thank you for that. It makes me feel good to be able to thank them personally.” Krawiec is actively Tweeting during the tour and his updates can be found @EddieKrawiec.