VEGAS CHAMP MCCLENATHAN GOES FOR FOURTH ATLANTA TOP FUEL TITLE INDIANAPOLIS (April 22, 2008) -- Cory McClenathan will roll into Altanta Dragway this weekend, home of the NHRA Southern Nationals, as the most recent Top Fuel winner on the 2008...
VEGAS CHAMP MCCLENATHAN GOES FOR FOURTH ATLANTA TOP FUEL TITLE
INDIANAPOLIS (April 22, 2008) -- Cory McClenathan will roll into Altanta Dragway this weekend, home of the NHRA Southern Nationals, as the most recent Top Fuel winner on the 2008 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series tour. The 45-year-old veteran will be looking to score back-to-back titles and his fourth at this event behind the wheel of the FRAM Top Fuel dragster. He enters the sixth event on the 24-race schedule with plenty of momentum after claiming Don Schumacher Racing's 105th national-event win.
McClenathan, known as "Cory Mac" to his fans and friends, won his 30th Top Fuel race at the NHRA Nationals at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on April 13, which marked his 52nd career final-round appearance and second of the season (Pomona1). It was also his first victory since joining Don Schumacher Racing in 2008 and his first national-event win since Richmond in 2006.
"The win in Vegas was really nice," said McClenathan, "but now it's time to get back to reality and back to work. It's been so long since we had a win and that got my attention the most. Everything seems to be coming together for the FRAM team and we're building confidence as we go along. It's been a lot of fun this season and that's one of the biggest changes in the team since reuniting with crew chief Mike Green and joining DSR. It's become fun again, and when racing is fun you're going to do well."
McClenathan's Vegas triumph tightened up the points for the elite group of drivers at the top of the Top Fuel standings. McClenathan remains in fourth going into Atlanta, just four rounds out of first place. The FRAM dragster has been one of the most consistent race cars to travel down the quarter-mile all season.
"Mike Green and his assistant Neal Strasbaugh have both performed an incredible job this season and they're really good at making sure that everything is done exactly the same ever time. They also do a great job reading the track conditions along with the help of Lanny Miglizzi, the DSR track guru (dubbed the 'track whisperer' by Tony Schumacher) who helps all of our teams with information about the condition of the racing surface."
McClenathan has won the Southern Nationals Top Fuel title three times (1995, 1998, 2004), tied for the most of any Top Fuel driver. He would love to win back-to-back races with another victory at Atlanta Dragway. The last time he won back-to-back Top Fuel races was in 1995 (Richmond-Atlanta).
"There is something to be said when you do well at a track like we have at Atlanta in the past," McClenathan reflected. "You feel more comfortable going in there. Obviously, after winning at the last race in Las Vegas I feel even more comfortable. I have confidence in my race car, my crew chief and my entire crew all the way around.
"When you win a race you just want to keep on winning rounds," added McClenathan. "We're hoping to go into Atlanta and qualify really well and then take it one round at a time. The points become more and more important as we get toward the middle of the season, especially when the weather changes. And I think we have a good race car for either good conditions or tricky track conditions. All the way around I'm excited about it."