Brown, Gray give Don Schumcaher Racing a nitro double-up at Sonoma

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SONOMA, Calif. - Don Schumacher Racing teams produced both finalists Sunday in each of the two premier categories of the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series for the second time in one year.

Antron Brown defeated Spencer Massey for the Top Fuel title of the NHRA Sonoma Nationals in Napa Valley, and Johnny Gray beat reigning Funny Car world champion Matt Hagan for the Funny Car title.

Antron Brown
Antron Brown

Photo by: NHRA

The last time four DSR drivers claimed all spots in two championship rounds at the same event was Aug. 21, 2011, at Brainerd, Minn., when both Brown and Gray won.

Brown and Gray produced the 188th and 189th NHRA national event titles for team owner Don Schumacher, who started the title run in 1970 when he won the prestigious NHRA U.S. Nationals held each year over Labor Day weekend near Indianapolis.

It is the fifth time this season and 37th time overall that a pair of DSR Top Fuelers raced for an NHRA title, and the third time this year and 15th all-time that it's happened in Funny Car.

Brown's fourth victory of the season moved him into a tie for first place with Massey in the Full Throttle standings. Brown also won the title on Aug. 22 near Denver and another victory this coming Sunday near Seattle would enable him to sweep the three-race Western Swing for the second time in four years.

Johnny Gray
Johnny Gray

Photo by: Michael C. Johnson

Although Hagan lost in the championship round, it marked not only the first time this year he advanced to a final round but also the first time he advanced past the second of the four-round elimination.

The following are results for DSR drivers from this weekend's Sonoma Nationals and other notes:

TOP FUEL
Event winner: Antron Brown
No. 1 qualifier: Doug Kalitta 3.785 sec., 321.65 mph

Antron Brown, Matco Tools dragster
Qualified: No. 4
SUNDAY ELIMINATIONS
First round: BROWN (3.782 mph, 322.88 mph) def. Steve Torrence (redlight, 3.788, 323.66)
Second round: BROWN (3.825, 321.12) def. Tony Schumacher (4.465, 192.60)
Semifinals: BROWN (3.817, 320.36) def. Brandon Bernstein (5.126, 142.03)
Final: BROWN (3.814, 318.02) def. Spencer Massey (3.826, 323.50)

FRIDAY QUALIFYING
Session 1: 4.487 sec., 175.52 mph
Session 2: 3.799, 322.27
SATURDAY QUALIFYING
Session 3: 5.021, 143.98
Session 4: 3.871, 315.12

Spencer Massey, FRAM/Prestone dragster
Qualified: No. 6

SUNDAY ELIMINATIONS
First round: MASSEY (3.777 sec., 328.62) def. Terry McMillen (3.991, 294.82)
Second round: MASSEY (3.804, 326.40) def. Shawn Langdon (4.414, 190.92)
Semifinals: MASSEY (3.802, 324.12) def. Doug Kalitta (4.161, 239.70)
Final: Antron Brown (3.814, 318.02) def. MASSEY (3.826, 323.50)

FRIDAY QUALIFYING
Session 1: 3.811 sec., 324.90 mph
Session 2: 7.747, 75.24
SATURDAY QUALIFYING
Session 3: 3.793, 327.43
Session 4: 3.833, 322.04

Tony Schumacher, U.S. Army dragster
Qualified: No. 3

SUNDAY ELIMINATIONS
First round: SCHUMACHER (3.792 sec., 322.88 mph) def. Mike Salinas (4.001, 248.75)
Second round: Antron Brown (3.825, 321.12) def. SCHUMACHER (4.465, 192.60)
FRIDAY QUALIFYING
Session 1: 5.008 sec., 139.24 mph
Session 2: 3.792, 321.19
SATURDAY QUALIFYING
Session 3: 3.799, 322.50
Session 4: 5.124, 133.37

NHRA FULL THROTTLE TOP FUEL STANDINGS
(through Aug. 29, 2012; Sonoma, Calif.; * clinched spots in Countdown)
1. *ANTRON BROWN, 1174
1. *SPENCER MASSEY, 1174
3. *TONY SCHUMACHER, 1048
4. Steve Torrence, 984
5. Doug Kalitta, 828
6. Morgan Lucas, 796
7. Shawn Langdon, 741
8. Brandon Bernstein, 734
9. David Grubnic, 684
10. Bob Vandergriff, 601

FUNNY CAR
Event winner: Johnny Gray
No. 1 qualifier: Cruz Pedregon, 4.028 sec., 307.30 mph

Johnny Gray, Big O Tires/SpeeDee Lube Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 6
SUNDAY ELIMINATIONS
First round: GRAY (4.075 sec., 313.00 mph) def. Tim Wilkerson (5.103, 146.81)
Second round: GRAY (4.115, 303.91) def. Gary Densham (4.574, 198.93)
Semifinals: GRAY (4.092, 307.16) def. Jack Beckman (4.118, 304.19)
Final: GRAY (4.142, 305.15) def. Matt Hagan (5.461, 146.67)

FRIDAY QUALIFYING
Session 1: 4.137 sec., 308.78 mph
Session 2: 4.079, 311.20
SATURDAY QUALIFYING
Session 3: 5.000, 153.68
Session 4: 4.252, 291.95

Matt Hagan, Aaron's Dream Machine Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 12
SUNDAY ELIMINATIONS
First round: HAGAN (4.105, 308.28) def. Courtney Force (4.164, 293.22)
Second round: HAGAN (4.924, 214.36) def. Jeff Arend (5.107, 192.36)
Semifinals: HAGAN (4.231, 291.32) def. Cruz Pedregon (4.293, 233.84)
Final: Johnny Gray (4.142, 305.15) def. HAGAN (5.461, 146.67)

FRIDAY QUALIFYING
Session 1: 4.243 sec., 291.26 mph
Session 2: 4.241, 275.96
SATURDAY QUALIFYING
Session 3: 4.165, 301.40
Session 4: 4.179, 276.69

Jack Beckman, Valvoline NextGen Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 2
SUNDAY ELIMINATIONS
First round: BECKMAN (4.323 sec., 235.47 mph) def. Dale Creasy Jr. (5.514, 128.87)
Second round: BECKMAN (4.922, 214.38) def. Alexis DeJoria (5.214, 168.40)
Semifinals: Johnny Gray (4.092, 307.16) def. BECKMAN (4.118, 304.19)

FRIDAY QUALIFYING
Session 1: 4.394 sec., 209.01 mph
Session 2: 4.042, 311.70
SATURDAY QUALIFYING
Session 3: 4.159, 296.44
Session 4: 4.126, 304.46

Ron Capps, NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 3
SUNDAY ELIMINATIONS
First round: Gary Densham (4.486 sec., 248.16 mph) def. CAPPS (5.118, 162.80)

FRIDAY QUALIFYING
Session 1: 4.146 sec., 297.55 mph
Session 2: 4.046, 317.57
SATURDAY QUALIFYING
Session 3: 4.768, 170.21
Session 4: 4.135, 306.40

NHRA FULL THROTTLE FUNNY CAR STANDINGS
(through Aug. 29, 2012; Sonoma, Calif.; * clinched spots in Countdown)

1.* Robert Hight, 1112
2. *RON CAPPS, 10313. JACK BECKMAN, 943
4. Mike Neff, 899
5. JOHNNY GRAY, 881
6. Cruz Pedregon, 761
7. Courtney Force, 740
8. Jeff Arend, 717
9. Bob Tasca III, 687
10. John Force, 674
-----------------------------
11. Tim Wilkerson, 605
12. MATT HAGAN, 583

Source: Don Schumacher Racing

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About this article
Series NHRA
Article type Race report
Tags beckman, brown, capps, dodge, dragster, funny car, gray, massey, nhra, schumacher, top fuel