SEMA eNews Vol. 17, No. 34, August 21, 2014

NHRA: Lucas Wins in Top Fuel; Funny Car, Pro Stock to Be Completed in Indy

Compiled by SEMA Editors

NHRA News

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LUCAS WINS IN TOP FUEL; FUNNY CAR, PRO STOCK TO BE COMPLETED IN INDY: Morgan Lucas raced to his third Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals Top Fuel victory Sunday to close out the rain-drenched NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series event at Brainerd International Raceway. The Funny Car final round between John Force and Ron Capps, along with the Pro Stock semifinals and final was postponed by NHRA officials due to darkness and inclement weather following a day filled with multiple rain delays. Racing in those categories will be completed during designated qualifying rounds at the 60th annual Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, August 27–September 1, at Indianapolis.

SIX TOP FUEL, SIX FUNNY CAR DRIVERS VIE FOR TRAXXAS NITRO SHOOTOUT FAN VOTES: Only one spot remains open in each of the NHRA Traxxas Nitro Shootout fields for Top Fuel and Funny Car. Those two positions will be determined by NHRA fan votes and a pair of lottery-style drawings. Six drivers in both Top Fuel and Funny Car are eligible for the fan-vote/lottery positions in each class. Fan voting on NHRA’s Facebook page is now open and will remain open until 12:00 p.m. (EDT), Tuesday, August 26.

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TEN MORE DRIVERS CLINCH COUNTDOWN BERTHS IN BRAINERD: Ten more drivers locked up their berths in NHRA's Countdown to the Championship playoffs, thanks to their efforts at the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals in Brainerd. In Top Fuel, Steve Torrence and Spencer Massey clinched their spots in qualifying; Brittany Force, Khalid alBalooshi and Richie Crampton all locked up their spots as the result of eliminations. Their qualification leaves just one spot open in the Top Fuel Countdown field. In Funny Car, Ron Capps, Tommy Johnson Jr., Alexis DeJoria, Courtney Force and Matt Hagan all clinched in eliminations.

He Said, She Said

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"It's just got so much history—and the legends that have raced there in the past. As a kid, I grew up watching all of these people that I looked up to—Shirley Muldowney and Bob Glidden and the ones after them—and it's just been one of those races and one of those facilities that's so awesome and holds so much history. NHRA held the first Junior Drag Racing League National Championship there in 1994. I was part of that. We run it off at that race in the eight- and nine-year-old category and just holds a lot of really special memories there for me. In 2001, we got down to three cars out of 174 in Super Comp. And then in 2012, we were runners-up as well in Pro Stock. So I feel like I've got a lot of unfinished business there, and I'm hopeful we can get it done this year."

—Erica Enders-Stevens on racing at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals and aiming for her first career win at the facility.

Inside the Numbers

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9: Career wins seven-time Top Fuel world champion Tony Schumacher has at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals. His inaugural win at the hallowed dragstrip that sits in the heart of Indiana came a year after his first world championship, and he has gone on to win eight more times including four in a row from 2006–2009.

"Back in ’96, I was hired to drive Top Fuel by the Peek Brothers, and licensed in Denver, Colorado, and got licensed on Sunday, and on Monday we left for the U.S. Nationals," Schumacher said. "Showed up, qualified 16th, and we went to the final round. And I mean very special. It's been this way for nearly 60 years. A lot of people have been able to live some great moments here. And fortunately for me, we're one of the teams that have been blessed with some of the best moments."

He is tied with Bob Glidden for the most career wins at the historic race. Both drivers will be honored for their career achievements during the course of the upcoming race weekend.

Did You Know

TICKETS ON SALE FOR HISTORIC 50TH ANNUAL AUTO CLUB NHRA FINALS: The NHRA will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Auto Club NHRA Finals—the season-ending race of the 2014 season—November 13–16 at Auto Club Raceway at Pomona. Since 1965, the event has launched names into the record books as drivers have celebrated their championship titles during the final weekend of the season. Tickets for the event are on sale now and can be purchased by calling the NHRA Ticket Sales Center at 800-884-NHRA.

View the complete 2014 Mello Yello Drag Racing Series schedule.

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