Don Schumacher Racing
Norwalk, OH – Jack Beckman advanced to his third final round of the season and 59th of his career, finishing runner-up in his Dodge//SRT Mopar machine in the 13th annual Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals at Summit Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio.
At the halfway point of the 2019 season, Dodge//SRT Mopar drivers own three of the top five positions in the Funny Car standings.
“Fast Jack” and his Infinite Hero Foundation team closed out an impressive four-race stretch, reaching the semifinals all four races, making two final rounds and climbing from seventh to fourth in the standings. Beckman wasn’t the only Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) driver to make a deep run Sunday. Tommy Johnson, Jr. powered his Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car to the semifinals for the sixth time this season and Leah Pritchett turned on a pair of win lights in her HEMI-powered Top Fuel dragster.
Beckman’s quest for a fourth Norwalk triumph opened with a pass of 3.950 seconds, the second-fastest run of the first round, to defeat Jonnie Lindberg. After dispatching Shawn Langdon with a solid run in round two, it was an all-DSR/Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat battle in the semifinals with Beckman and Johnson. The 2012 Funny Car world champion did lose traction about halftrack, but he kept his machine going down the track to defeat Johnson, who lost traction immediately, and reach his fourth career final at Summit Motorsports Park.
Norwalk, OH – NHRA Nationals
DSR Norwalk Elimination Highlights:
Jack Beckman advanced to the final round on Sunday to lead DSR at the 13th annual NHRA Nationals in Norwalk, Ohio
With his run to the final, Beckman powered to two runner-ups and two semifinal finishes over the past four consecutive events
Tommy Johnson Jr. recorded his fifth semifinal appearance in six events
Leah Pritchett snapped a four-race first-round exit streak by advancing to the Top Fuel semifinals
Johnson, Beckman, and No. 1 qualifier Ron Capps leave Norwalk ranked in the ‘top five’ in the Funny Car rankings
Antron Brown maintained his No. 4 position in the Top Fuel standings
Driver of the Matco Tools Top Fuel Dragster
Qualified: No. 7 (3.742 E.T. at 326.00 MPH)
Norwalk, OH – Ron Capps captured Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) its first No. 1 qualifying position of the season with four consistent runs behind the wheel of his Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car at the 13th Annual Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals at Summit Raceway Park in Norwalk, Ohio.
Capps and his DSR Dodge//SRT Mopar teammate, Jack Beckman, who qualified his DSR Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car fourth, lead seven Mopar-powered Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car drivers that qualified for Sunday’s elimination rounds.
Unseasonably cool temperatures Friday provided Capps, the 2016 Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals winner, and the rest of the field excellent conditions during the weekend’s first two qualifying sessions. After posting the third-best run in session one, Capps closed the second qualifying session with a blazing 3.879-second elapsed time (ET) at 329.18 mph pass. His speed continued Saturday earning a pair of qualifying points in the third session and topping the final session giving the two-time 2019 Funny Car winner a total of 10 bonus points during qualifying en route to his 23rd career No. 1 qualifying position and first in Norwalk.
Capps Clinches Top Honors at Norwalk
NORWALK, OH – Ron Capps will start race day at Summit Motorsports Park from the No. 1 position, marking his first pole at the northern Ohio venue. The 2016 Funny Car world champion’s second qualifying run of 3.879-seconds at 329.18 mph stood strong through Saturday’s two qualifying efforts at the 13th annual NHRA Norwalk event and earned him his first No. 1 qualifier of 2019, and 23rd of his career.
Capps and the Pennzoil Synthetics/NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car team were dominant throughout all four qualifying sessions at the famed facility. Before pacing the field with his Q2 run, Capps powered to the second-quickest pass of the opening session on Friday afternoon. Capps and crew chief Rahn Tobler’s strong qualifying performance carried into Saturday and they continued to demonstrate their command on the stacked 20-car Funny Car field. In Q3 Capps blasted to the second-quickest pass of the round, and in Q4, threw down with a session-best 3.912 E.T., amassing ten out of the 12 possible bonus points up for grabs over the course of the weekend.
NORWALK, OH –Antron Brown qualified seventh in Top Fuel, while J.R. Todd placed seventh in Funny Car to lead Toyota into Sunday’s Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals at the Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio.
Brown was the top qualifier in Friday’s opening session with a 3.742-second run at 326 mph and then ran the third-quickest time in Saturday’s final session to earn four bonus points for the weekend – the second-highest total of the weekend in Top Fuel. Overall, he registered three 3.7-second passes in the four sessions.
“I’m feeling good for tomorrow,” said Brown, who will race Scott Palmer in Sunday’s eliminations. “Our Matco Tools Toyota has been running exceptionally well. Q1 was a really good run, Q3 was another decent run even after losing a belt and then we ran strong again in Q4. We overpowered the track Friday night, but today was key to prepare for eliminations. I believe we have a car that can compete and race with anybody. It will be warmer tomorrow and that will throw a curveball for everybody. We’ve been putting together a car that runs pretty well in the hot weather conditions, now we just need a little luck to go our way.”
Capps #1 in Funny Car at the end of Friday Qualifying
NORWALK, OH – Funny Car racer Ron Capps rocketed to the provisional qualifying lead Friday evening at the 13th running of the NHRA Nationals in Norwalk, Ohio. A two-time 2019 winner, Capps is seeking his first No. 1 qualifier of the season.
The Pennzoil Synthetics/NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car team started the weekend by unloading with a stout 3.965-second pass to earn the No. 2 spot at the conclusion of Q1.
When the Rahn Tobler-led team returned for Q2, they watched as driver after driver improved upon their earlier passes, shuffling the 20-car field. By the time the Pennzoil/NAPA team pulled up to the line they had been bumped back to the No. 9 spot. The team knew they would need to lay down a quick pass to break back into the top half of the field and better their chances at having lane choice come Sunday morning. Tobler turned up the wick, and Capps launched the Pennzoil Synthetics/ NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat down the track in 3.879 seconds at 329.18-mph to capture the provisional pole.
Norwalk, OH – NHRA Nationals
Matt Hagan returns to Norwalk as the defending Funny Car event champion
Jack Beckman leads the Funny Car class in number of victories (three) at the Norwalk track: 2009, 2015, 2017
Leah Pritchett will pull double-duty, competing in both the Top Fuel and Factory Stock Showdown Series categories
Mark Pawuk raced to his career-first Factory Stock Showdown final round at the 2018 event
As a resident of Akron, Ohio, Pawuk considers Norwalk to be his home track
Ron Capps celebrates a birthday on June 20
DSR-Owned Track Records:
Funny Car, E.T.: 3.865 seconds, Matt Hagan (2017)
DSR Driver Information:
Driver of the Matco Tools Top Fuel Dragster