Castrol Lone Star Nationals Preview

CASTROL LONE STAR NATIONALS TO CONCLUDE GRUELING EAST COAST SWING ENNIS, Texas -- The first of two NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series events held at the Texas Motorplex this season will also be one of the most pivotal stops on the...

CASTROL LONE STAR NATIONALS TO CONCLUDE GRUELING EAST COAST SWING ENNIS, Texas -- The first of two NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series events held at the Texas Motorplex this season will also be one of the most pivotal stops on the circuit in 1998. The second annual Castrol Lone Star Nationals presented by HiLo/O'Reilly Auto Parts will be the final stop of a grueling three-race East Coast swing, a tour which started April 16 at Atlanta Dragway, moved through the Virginia Motorsports Park and will end at Billy Meyer's state-of-the-art facility May 3. In all, NHRA professional category teams will be on the road for 19 days, covering some 1,703 miles between events. For those teams who are immersed in the chase for Winston championships, a strong effort here could pay big dividends as they work to pull away from the pack. Others will simply be looking for their first win of the season at the $1.7-million race, the seventh of 22 events in the $30-million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series. Defending race winners include Joe Amato in Top Fuel, Randy Anderson in Funny Car and Warren Johnson in Pro Stock. Amato, who has already posted the quickest Top Fuel run in NHRA history this season at 4.523 seconds, and lowered the NHRA elapsed time national record to 4.539 seconds, is still looking for his first win of the season. Those drivers looking to deny the Exeter, Pa. driver a repeat victory include two-time winner, speed record holder (322.92 mph) and Winston points leader Cory McClenathan, defending Winston champion Gary Scelzi, Mac Tools Gatornationals and Winston Invitational winner Kenny Bernstein, and two-time finalists Jim Head and Larry Dixon. Ontario, Calif.'s Anderson will be looking to put an end his sophomore jinx and take his first win of the season. In order to accomplish that, the Parts America Pontiac driver will have to stop seven-time Winston champion John Force and a host of 1998 winners, including Tony and Winston points leader Cruz Pedregon, Ron Capps and Chuck Etchells. Johnson, of Duluth, Ga., hopes to continue his strongest Pro Stock start in several seasons. The GM Goodwrench Performance Pontiac Firebird driver has won three events, established national records for elapsed time (6.873 seconds) and speed (201.20 mph), and leads the Winston standings. Drivers hoping to put an end to Johson's quick start include defending Winston champion Jim Yates, two-time finalist Jeg Coughlin, Kurt Johnson and Mark Osborne.

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Series NHRA
Drivers Jim Head , Jeg Coughlin , Larry Dixon , Kenny Bernstein , Kurt Johnson , Warren Johnson , Ron Capps , John Force , Joe Amato , Gary Scelzi , Chuck Etchells , Cruz Pedregon , Cory McClenathan