BROWNSBURG, IN – September 5, 2016 – (Motor Sports Newswire) – Tony Schumacher sprinted to victory on Labor Day at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis.
Matt Hagan (Funny Car), Chris McGaha (Pro Stock) and Andrew Hines (Pro Stock Motorcycle) also were winners in their respective categories at the 18th event of 24 on the 2016 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series schedule. The Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals was the final race of the regular season.
Schumacher claimed his 82nd career win when he powered his U.S. Army dragster to a 3.806-second pass at 317.64 mph to beat Steve Torrence’s 3.803 at 325.06 in his Capco Contractors / Torrence Racing dragster during the final round on Monday. The winningest Top Fuel driver in NHRA Top Fuel history also became the winningest driver in Lucas Oil Raceway history by tallying his 10th career victory at the venerable track. Schumacher outran Tripp Tatum, reigning world champ Antron Brown and Sonoma, Calif., event winner J.R. Todd in the earlier rounds before facing Torrence.
“I didn’t see (Steve Torrence) for one second but I heard him,” said Schumacher. “It was a great final round, live on FOX and I had my chance to win my 10th at Indy. The fans got a close race. It’s been such a great career and it’s been so much fun. I’ve had great teams, one after another, and it’s a blessing to be a part of this and have a chance. I love my job and I love drag racing cars.”
Schumacher, who also won the Top Fuel portion of the lucrative NHRA Traxxas Nitro Shootout this weekend, will enter the NHRA Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship six-race playoff as the No. 4 seed.
Torrence, competing in his sixth final round of the season, beat Bruce Litton, Shawn Langdon and Doug Kalitta in the earlier rounds. He is a three-time runner-up at Indianapolis and has two wins so far this season, which came at Pomona, Calif., and Englishtown, N.J. Torrence will enter the Countdown as the third seed.
Leah Pritchett, driver of the Papa John’s dragster, clinched the 10th and final spot in the Countdown to the Championship after Terry McMillen redlighted in the first round in his Amalie Motor Oil dragster. Pritchett, who also lost in the first round, had a one-point lead over McMillen entering eliminations.
Hagan pushed his Mopar / Rocky Boots Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car to a 3.964 at 327.43 to better reigning world champion Del Worsham’s 3.958 at 324.20 in his DHL / Mello Yello Toyota Camry. This is Hagan’s 21st career win and first at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals. The two-time world champ has three wins so far this season and enters the playoffs as the third seed. Hagan sprinted past John Bojec, Robert Hight and Tommy Johnson Jr. en route to making his fifth final round appearance of the season.
“It’s incredible,” said Hagan. “This is something for the last nine years that I’ve been driving for Don Schumacher Racing we have been trying to accomplish and it’s not an easy task. I have the parts and pieces and people around me, especially (crew chief) Dickie Venables. I’m just proud to be a part of it. The fans got what they paid for today. I’m tickled to death to be up here right now. This is something that I’ve wanted to check off for a long time.”
Worsham, who won four of the six Countdown races last year en route to his first Funny Car world championship, beat Alexis DeJoria, Dave Richards and points leader Ron Capps in the earlier rounds. Worsham has one win this season and enters the Countdown in the No. 2 slot.
Alexis DeJoria, driver of the Tequila Patron Toyota Camry, clinched the final Funny Car spot when Chad Head lost to Capps in the second round.
In Pro Stock, McGaha tallied his first win in 2016 by racing his Harlow Sammons of Odessa Chevy Camaro to a 6.688 at 207.15 to defeat Allen Johnson’s 6.715 at 207.09 in his Marathon Petroleum Dodge Dart. McGaha, who was the runner-up at Phoenix earlier this year, has four wins in his career. This was his first final round appearance at Indianapolis. The Texan will enter the Countdown as the No. 7 seed. He outlasted Matt Hartford, Curt Steinbach and two-time 2016 runner-up Vincent Nobile en route to the final round.
“We got to keep doing what we were doing today,” said McGaha about his chances of winning the championship. “If we keep doing what we were doing today, we’ll definitely have a shot. I botched a lot of runs along the way. We shouldn’t even be in seventh. Between tire shaking and making bad calls and flat getting our butt kicked, we should be a lot higher. It’s not impossible at this point. Just got to keep winning.”
Johnson, making his third final round appearance of the season, raced past Brainerd winner Drew Skillman, seven-time 2016 event winner Greg Anderson and Shane Gray in the earlier rounds.
Gray, McGaha, back-to-back world champ Erica Enders and five-time world champ Jeg Coughlin penciled their names into the final four Countdown to the Championship spots in Pro Stock.
Hines took over the Pro Stock Motorcycle points lead by riding his Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson to a 6.682 at 194.63 in the final round to beat Hector Arana Jr., who redlighted on his Lucas Oil Buell. He earned his 47th career win, fifth of the 2016 season and second at Lucas Oil Raceway with the effort. The winningest Pro Stock Motorcycle racer in NHRA history beat rookie Melissa Surber, alligator farmer Jerry Savoie and Sonoma winner LE Tonglet in the earlier rounds.
“I’ve had a good motorcycle as of late, but it hasn’t been qualifying well,” said Hines, a five-time Pro Stock Motorcycle champion. “I knew the potential of my Harley. I knew I had a bike that could go rounds and we just had to pick on it here and there. We’re getting closer to something that will work for us in the heat. We got to the final round and figured out the tune-up that needed to be in there. I’m happy I made my best run of the weekend in the final round.”
Arana Jr. made his first final round appearance of the season by riding past Michael Ray, Chip Ellis and rookie Cory Reed in the first three rounds. The 2011 Indianapolis winner will head into the playoffs as the No. 7 seed.
LE Tonglet, Chip Ellis, Hector Arana Sr., Matt Smith and Reed all clinched spots into the Countdown to the Championship.
The 2016 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series will continue with the NHRA Carolina Nationals, Sept. 16-18, at zMAX Dragway in Charlotte, N.C. The event is the first race of the six-race NHRA Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship playoffs.
BROWNSBURG, IN — Final finish order (1-16) at the 62nd annual Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Raceway Park at Indianapolis. The race is the 18th of 24 events in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series.
1. Tony Schumacher; 2. Steve Torrence; 3. Doug Kalitta; 4. J.R. Todd; 5. Antron Brown; 6. Shawn Langdon; 7. Brittany Force; 8. Clay Millican; 9. Pat Dakin; 10. Tripp Tatum; 11. T.J. Zizzo; 12. Bruce Litton; 13. Richie Crampton; 14. Morgan Lucas; 15. Leah Pritchett; 16. Terry McMillen.
1. Matt Hagan; 2. Del Worsham; 3. Tommy Johnson Jr.; 4. Ron Capps; 5. Chad Head; 6. Courtney Force; 7. Robert Hight; 8. Dave Richards; 9. John Force; 10. Jim Campbell; 11. Bob Bode; 12. John Hale; 13. Jack Beckman; 14. Alexis DeJoria; 15. Tim Wilkerson; 16. John Bojec.
1. Chris McGaha; 2. Allen Johnson; 3. Shane Gray; 4. Vincent Nobile; 5. Greg Anderson; 6. Alex Laughlin; 7. Jason Line; 8. Curt Steinbach; 9. Aaron Strong; 10. Matt Hartford; 11. Drew Skillman; 12. Erica Enders; 13. Deric Kramer; 14. Jeg Coughlin; 15. Kenny Delco; 16. Bo Butner.
PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE:
1. Andrew Hines; 2. Hector Arana Jr; 3. LE Tonglet; 4. Cory Reed; 5. Eddie Krawiec; 6. Jerry Savoie; 7. Angelle Sampey; 8. Chip Ellis; 9. Matt Smith; 10. Karen Stoffer; 11. Michael Ray; 12. Melissa Surber; 13. Jim Underdahl; 14. Hector Arana; 15. Steve Johnson; 16. Scotty Pollacheck.
BROWNSBURG, IN — Monday’s final results from the 62nd annual Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Raceway Park at Indianapolis. The race is the 18th of 24 in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series:
Top Fuel — Tony Schumacher, 3.806 seconds, 317.64 mph def. Steve Torrence, 3.803 seconds, 325.06 mph.
Funny Car — Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger, 3.964, 327.43 def. Del Worsham, Toyota Camry, 3.958, 324.20.
Pro Stock — Chris McGaha, Chevy Camaro, 6.688, 207.15 def. Allen Johnson, Dodge Dart, 6.715, 207.08.
Pro Stock Motorcycle — Andrew Hines, Harley-Davidson, 6.862, 194.63 def. Hector Arana Jr, Buell, Foul – Red Light.
Pro Modified — Von Smith, Chevy Corvette, 11.726, 73.67 def. Troy Coughlin, Corvette, Foul – Red Light.
Top Alcohol Dragster — Dan Page, 5.352, 270.32 def. Shawn Cowie, 5.369, 270.27.
Top Alcohol Funny Car — Jonnie Lindberg, Chevy Camaro, 5.673, 263.00 def. Annie Whiteley, Camaro, 10.210, 92.40.
Competition Eliminator — Kevin Self, Bantam Roadster, 7.796, 168.58 def. Jason Coan, Bantam, 8.224, 158.52.
Super Stock — Ryan Haag, Chevy Camaro, 9.821, 126.16 def. Sean Cour, Chevy Cobalt, 9.497, 138.96.
Stock Eliminator — Jeff Lopez, Chevy Camaro, 9.395, 141.03 def. Charlie Downing, Ford Mustang, 10.383, 127.74.
Super Comp — Gary Stinnett, Dragster, 8.888, 186.05 def. Greg Kamplain, Dragster, Foul – Red Light.
Super Gas — Tommy Phillips, Chevy Corvette, 9.973, 149.55 def. Ray Miller III, Chevy Camaro, 10.071, 145.36.
Factory Stock Showdown — Chris Holbrook, Ford Mustang, 8.314, 163.00 def. Stephen Bell, Chevy Camaro, 8.442, 161.67.
BROWNSBURG, IN– Final round-by-round results from the 62nd annual Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Raceway Park at Indianapolis, the 18th of 24 events in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series:
ROUND ONE — J.R. Todd, 3.718, 326.56 def. Morgan Lucas, 4.373, 181.64; Tony Schumacher, 3.746, 327.19 def. Tripp Tatum, 3.825, 323.66; Clay Millican, 3.739, 323.66 def. Terry McMillen, Foul – Red Light; Steve Torrence, 3.743, 326.79 def. Bruce Litton, 3.976, 308.50; Brittany Force, 3.758, 323.81 def. Pat Dakin, 3.795, 321.58; Antron Brown, 3.750, 325.30 def. T.J. Zizzo, 3.843, 319.22; Doug Kalitta, 3.745, 327.35 def. Richie Crampton, 4.351, 223.65; Shawn Langdon, 3.737, 330.31 def. Leah Pritchett, 6.130, 97.03;
QUARTERFINALS — Schumacher, 3.788, 320.81 def. Brown, 4.000, 275.34; Kalitta, 3.833, 289.26 def. Force, 4.791, 163.43; Todd, 3.773, 326.40 def. Millican, 4.814, 158.46; Torrence, 3.772, 327.74 def. Langdon, 4.127, 265.12;
SEMIFINALS — Schumacher, 3.981, 298.87 def. Todd, 4.174, 257.63; Torrence, 3.808, 324.98 def. Kalitta, 3.849, 285.83;
FINAL — Schumacher, 3.806, 317.64 def. Torrence, 3.803, 325.06.
ROUND ONE — Dave Richards, Ford Mustang, 4.132, 307.44 def. Jack Beckman, Dodge Charger, 8.238, 80.59; Matt Hagan, Charger, 3.894, 327.59 def. John Bojec, Toyota Solara, 11.329, 73.25; Ron Capps, Charger, 3.927, 321.96 def. Bob Bode, Solara, 4.107, 283.19; Courtney Force, Chevy Camaro, 3.939, 322.27 def. Jim Campbell, Charger, 4.023, 315.93; Tommy Johnson Jr., Charger, 3.944, 317.87 def. John Hale, Charger, 7.385, 86.73; Chad Head, Toyota Camry, 3.953, 285.95 def. John Force, Camaro, 3.983, 316.00; Del Worsham, Camry, 3.897, 325.92 def. Alexis DeJoria, Camry, 9.304, 94.02; Robert Hight, Camaro, 3.931, 326.56 def. Tim Wilkerson, Mustang, 10.657, 86.91;
QUARTERFINALS — Capps, 3.957, 322.19 def. Head, 4.001, 325.77; Hagan, 3.942, 324.59 def. Hight, 4.572, 183.42; Johnson Jr., 3.966, 320.74 def. C. Force, 4.072, 276.41; Worsham, 3.986, 321.19 def. Richards, 5.348, 144.06;
SEMIFINALS — Worsham, 3.976, 321.96 def. Capps, 4.059, 308.71; Hagan, 3.945, 323.81 def. Johnson Jr., 3.970, 321.65;
FINAL — Hagan, 3.964, 327.43 def. Worsham, 3.958, 324.20.
ROUND ONE — Chris McGaha, Chevy Camaro, 6.659, 207.75 def. Matt Hartford, Camaro, 6.664, 206.64; Allen Johnson, Dodge Dart, 6.668, 206.83 def. Drew Skillman, Camaro, 6.666, 208.65; Alex Laughlin, Camaro, 6.647, 208.71 def. Kenny Delco, Camaro, 6.734, 206.35; Jason Line, Camaro, 6.634, 208.26 def. Aaron Strong, Camaro, 6.662, 207.46; Shane Gray, Camaro, 6.644, 208.14 def. Erica Enders, Dart, 6.680, 207.02; Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.633, 208.62 def. Jeg Coughlin, Dart, 6.696, 206.61; Curt Steinbach, Camaro, 6.827, 204.39 def. Bo Butner, Camaro, Foul – Red Light; Vincent Nobile, Camaro, 6.653, 208.23 def. Deric Kramer, Dart, 6.684, 206.89;
QUARTERFINALS — McGaha, 6.695, 206.60 def. Steinbach, 6.753, 203.65; Gray, 6.663, 208.01 def. Laughlin, 6.662, 207.72; Nobile, 6.673, 208.52 def. Line, Foul – Red Light; Johnson, 6.683, 207.21 def. Anderson, 6.655, 207.91;
SEMIFINALS — McGaha, 6.705, 206.48 def. Nobile, 6.807, 206.99; Johnson, 6.701, 206.35 def. Gray, 6.673, 208.17;
FINAL — McGaha, 6.688, 207.15 def. Johnson, 6.715, 207.08.
PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE:
ROUND ONE — Jerry Savoie, Suzuki, 6.859, 195.48 def. Scotty Pollacheck, Buell, 10.400, 74.01; Chip Ellis, Buell, 6.867, 195.93 def. Jim Underdahl, Suzuki, 6.922, 193.16; Hector Arana Jr, Buell, 6.866, 195.56 def. Michael Ray, Buell, 6.910, 194.16; Cory Reed, Buell, 6.931, 194.21 def. Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 7.064, 192.11; Angelle Sampey, Buell, 6.865, 195.76 def. Hector Arana, Buell, 7.044, 194.44; LE Tonglet, Suzuki, 6.847, 197.25 def. Matt Smith, 6.856, 195.00; Eddie Krawiec, Harley-Davidson, 6.835, 195.93 def. Karen Stoffer, Suzuki, 6.892, 194.58; Andrew Hines, Harley-Davidson, 6.875, 193.13 def. Melissa Surber, Buell, 6.916, 193.49;
QUARTERFINALS — Hines, 6.883, 193.49 def. Savoie, 6.897, 195.11; Arana Jr, 6.930, 193.65 def. Ellis, 6.939, 194.30; Reed, 6.883, 193.68 def. Sampey, Foul – Red Light; Tonglet, 6.883, 194.69 def. Krawiec, 6.879, 195.19;
SEMIFINALS — Arana Jr, 6.913, 194.44 def. Reed, Foul – Red Light; Hines, 6.918, 192.85 def. Tonglet, 6.925, 194.41;
FINAL — Hines, 6.862, 194.63 def. Arana Jr, Foul – Red Light.
BROWNSBURG, IN — Point standings (top 10) following the 62nd annual Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Raceway Park at Indianapolis, the 18th of 24 events in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series –
1. Antron Brown, 1,504; 2. Doug Kalitta, 1,370; 3. Steve Torrence, 1,367; 4. Tony Schumacher, 1,290; 5. Brittany Force, 1,247; 6. J.R. Todd, 1,090; 7. Shawn Langdon, 1,049; 8. Clay Millican, 908; 9. Richie Crampton, 889; 10. Leah Pritchett, 684.
1. Ron Capps, 1,532; 2. Del Worsham, 1,330; 3. Matt Hagan, 1,295; 4. Courtney Force, 1,282; 5. Jack Beckman, 1,200; 6. Robert Hight, 1,118; 7. Tommy Johnson Jr., 1,112; 8. John Force, 1,055; 9. Tim Wilkerson, 964; 10. Alexis DeJoria, 812.
1. Jason Line, 1,843; 2. Greg Anderson, 1,772; 3. Bo Butner, 1,269; 4. Allen Johnson, 1,192; 5. Vincent Nobile, 1,121; 6. Drew Skillman, 1,000; 7. Chris McGaha, 969; 8. Shane Gray, 939; 9. Erica Enders, 788; 10. Jeg Coughlin, 775.
Pro Stock Motorcycle
1. Andrew Hines, 1,026; 2. Eddie Krawiec, 985; 3. Angelle Sampey, 752; 4. Jerry Savoie, 743; 5. LE Tonglet, 631; 6. Chip Ellis, 535; 7. Hector Arana Jr, 526; 8. Hector Arana, 505; 9. Matt Smith, 449; 10. Cory Reed, 410.
About National Hot Rod Association
Headquartered in Glendora, Calif., NHRA is the primary sanctioning body for the sport of drag racing in the United States. NHRA presents 23 national events featuring the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series and NHRA J&A Service Pro Mod Drag Racing Series. NHRA provides competition opportunities for drivers of all levels in the NHRA Summit Racing Series and the NHRA Drags: Street Legal Style presented by AAA. NHRA also offers NHRA Jr. Street for teens and the Summit Racing Jr. Drag Racing League for youth ages 5 to 17. In addition, NHRA owns and operates five racing facilities: Atlanta Dragway in Georgia; Auto-Plus Raceway at Gainesville in Florida; National Trail Raceway in Ohio; Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis; and Auto Club Raceway at Pomona in Southern California. For more information, log on to NHRA.com, or visit the official NHRA pages on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.
Source: National Hot Rod Association