BECKMAN IS RUNNER-UP IN CONCORD, JUMPS TO FOUR POINTS FROM LEAD CONCORD, N.C. (Sept. 19, 2010) - Jack Beckman came within one round of taking over the points lead in the Countdown to the Championship playoffs of the 2010 NHRA Full Throttle Drag...
BECKMAN IS RUNNER-UP IN CONCORD, JUMPS TO FOUR POINTS FROM LEAD
CONCORD, N.C. (Sept. 19, 2010) - Jack Beckman came within one round of taking over the points lead in the Countdown to the Championship playoffs of the 2010 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series Funny Car class, but settled for second place and a runner-up finish to non-Countdown-contender Cruz Pedregon.
Racing the Valvoline/Mail Terminal Services Dodge Charger, Beckman qualified No. 7 at the third annual NHRA Carolinas Nationals, and carved through the field to reach his fifth final round of the season, the 22nd of his career and the second at zMAX Dragway (he won the 2008 inaugural race here). He came out of the ruckus just four points behind leader John Force, who exited in the opening round.
Pedregon, who qualified No. 1, was tough to beat today, posting a solid 4.171-second pass at 299.13 mph in the final, second only to his opening-round 4.161/298.27 today, to grab the victory over Beckman's 4.212/301.81.
En route to the final round, Beckman defeated his Don Schumacher Racing teammate Ron Capps in the opening stanza with a 4.232/302.01, Paul Lee with a 4.239/292.58, and Bob Tasca III with a 4.199/301.13.
"It's frustrating to get one step away from the winner's podium and not be able to get up there," said Beckman.
"Cruz had the best car this weekend for everything but the first session of qualifying. That team absolutely earned it, so hat's off to them. But we made them earn it in the final. We took a good, consistent and quick race car up there.
"Maybe the most important thing we can take from the weekend is that the changes we made to the chassis, after front-halfing it and taking it to Indy and not being satisfied, worked and we have our old car back.
"We look like we have a predictable hot-track combo right now, which had been a little bit of an Achilles' Heel earlier in the season for us. We know when it cools off we're right amongst the top cars.
"We're leaving here four points out of first place. If we keep progressing like this the rest of the year, that car will have a '1' on it . But we're not going to jump to Pomona (Calif., the final race of the year). We're thinking about Dallas (next week), and we're going to test here tomorrow.
"As good as we did this weekend, we still feel like we want to go into Dallas with a better handle on the car. So, we'll test a few things tomorrow, test some back-up parts, and our theory is we want to win the war. And I think we're taking all the right steps."
Up next is the 25th annual NHRA Fall Nationals at Texas Motorplex in Ennis, Texas, Sept. 24-26.