Brainerd: Larry Dixon preview

* Larry Dixon has clinched the top seed in the Countdown to 1 NHRA Playoffs beginning at the U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis Sept. 3-6, 2010. He enters this week's Lucas Oil Nationals in first place in the NHRA Full Throttle Top Fuel point ...

* Larry Dixon has clinched the top seed in the Countdown to 1 NHRA Playoffs beginning at the U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis Sept. 3-6, 2010. He enters this week's Lucas Oil Nationals in first place in the NHRA Full Throttle Top Fuel point standings and leads second-place Tony Schumacher by 229 points.

* Dixon has won races at Brainerd International Raceway twice, but he has advanced to the final round six times. He won at Brainerd in 1999 and 2001; he was the runner up in 2002, '05, '07 and '09. Last year, he was the No. 2 qualifier; he defeated Scott Palmer, Joe Hartley and Antron Brown before losing to Morgan Lucas in the final round of eliminations.

* Dixon has won all five of the races in which he was the No. 1 qualifier making him a perfect 20-0 in eliminations when competing as the No. 1 qualifier this season. Last month in Denver, Dixon was the No. 5 qualifier; he defeated Morgan Lucas and Tony Schumacher before losing to Brandon Bernstein in the semifinals.

* Dixon has advanced to at least the semifinals in 12 of the 16 events so far this season; he remains undefeated in final rounds with an 8-0 mark and has eight wins in the season's first 16 races: Pomona, Calif., Baytown, Texas, Las Vegas, Atlanta Dragway, Joliet, Ill., Englishtown, N.J., Norwalk, Ohio and Sonoma, Calif.

* Dixon has been an excellent qualifier this season having qualified in the top three at 14 of the 16 races. Dixon's average qualifying position so far this year is 2.63. He has been the No. 1 qualifier five times this season and 45 times in his career.

* Dixon has raced Tony Schumacher in eliminations 10 times this season; Dixon leads the season series 7-3 and has won each of the last five meetings. In nine of their 10 meetings this season, the winning driver has gone on to win the event.

* Dixon is second on the NHRA's all-time Top Fuel final-round appearances list with 100 final rounds. Tony Schumacher leads with 101 final rounds.

* Dixon won the NHRA Top Fuel championship in 2002 and '03. He is second on the NHRA's all-time Top Fuel winner's list with 56 victories; Tony Schumacher tops the list with 65 wins. Dixon is seventh on the NHRA's all-time career victories list for all professional categories; Greg Anderson is in sixth place with 62 wins. Dixon is fifth on the NHRA's career round wins list with 579 round wins; fourth-place Bob Glidden has 597. Dixon was the 1995 NHRA Rookie of the Year.

Dixon prior to Brainerd:

"It was nice to be able to clinch the top seed for the Countdown (Countdown to 1 NHRA Playoffs) for the Al-Anabi Team last race. The hard work from the team, the results and the performance of the car this season over last allowed us to get the No. 1 seed. It feels pretty good to get the No. 1 seed after starting the Countdown as the No. 2 seed last year. For the regular season, we've done as much as we can in terms of positioning ourselves in the Countdown.

"That said, though, we absolutely still want to win at Brainerd. There's still a race up for grabs, and we'll definitely go there to win it. We lost a close final there last year, but I think in 1000 foot racing, there's a lot of close races. Last year, we lost a lot of those close races, and this year, we seem to have won more of them than we did last year.

"As a group going into a race, we're not giving up a race to test anything. This race is a national event with trophies and money on the line, and you wouldn't sacrifice that for testing. And that's one of the things I love about this team: they always play to win. We'll save our testing for the open test at Indy (O'Reilly Raceway Park in Indianapolis) later this month."

-source: al-anabi racing team

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Series NHRA
Drivers Antron Brown , Larry Dixon , Tony Schumacher , Greg Anderson , Bob Glidden , Brandon Bernstein , Morgan Lucas , Joe Hartley