ANTRON BROWN RACES MATCO TOOLS/U.S. ARMY DRAGSTER TO FINAL ROUND AT GATORNATIONALS GAINESVILLE, Fla. (March 13, 2010) - Antron Brown and his Don Schumacher-owned Matco Tools/U.S. Army team used a strong rebound weekend as the 24-time NHRA winner...
ANTRON BROWN RACES MATCO TOOLS/U.S. ARMY DRAGSTER TO FINAL ROUND AT GATORNATIONALS
GAINESVILLE, Fla. (March 13, 2010) - Antron Brown and his Don Schumacher-owned Matco Tools/U.S. Army team used a strong rebound weekend as the 24-time NHRA winner drove to a runner-up finish Sunday afternoon at Gainesville Raceway. Brown improved to fifth place in the NHRA Top Fuel standings with 20 races remaining on the 2010 NHRA schedule.
A day after earning his first No. 1 qualifying award of the season and 22nd of his career with a 1,000-foot blast of 3.803 seconds at 321.04 mph, Brown defeated No. 16 qualifier Todd Paton, young gun Steve Torrence, and 2009 Rookie of the Year runner-up Shawn Langdon, before smoking the tires against seven-time champion and DSR teammate Tony Schumacher in the final round.
At the site where Brown made his professional NHRA debut in 1998, he used a tune-up from crew chiefs Brian Corradi and Mark Oswald to power the Matco Tools/U.S. Army car to a lap of 3.973 seconds at 229.90 mph. Brown's dragster ran 3.038-seconds to half track and broke a pushrod at 600-feet. Paton's car slowed to a run of 7.079 at 94.98. It was Brown's 310th career round win.
Squaring off against the Texas runner Torrence for the second time in two races this season, Brown got the jump at the start to race the Matco Tools/U.S. Army dragster to the win. The bright blue Matco-backed rail cruised to low elapsed time of the round in the left lane at Gainesville Raceway at 3.812 at 318.92. Torrence trailed slightly at 3.862 at 314.66. Brown is now 4-0 against Torrence.
Competing in the semifinals for the first time this season, Brown and Langdon used almost identical reaction times as the 16-time Pro Stock Motorcycle winner sped to the win in the Matco Tools/U.S. Army rail. Brown powered to a performance of 3.801 seconds at 318.24 mph. It was the quickest pass of the season for Brown, eclipsing his No. 1 qualifying mark of 3.803-seconds. Langdon's car posted a run of 3.909 at 304.74 mph. Brown is now 2-1 in three career races against the two-time NHRA Super Comp champion.
Racing in his 49th career final round and 16th in Top Fuel, Brown was defeated by fellow Matco Tools Racing and U.S. Army Racing teammate Tony Schumacher. The Matco/Army car lost traction early and slowed to a run of 6.637 at 101.17, while Schumacher posted a track-record run of 3.797 at 322.04 in his Mike Green-tuned dragster to score his 62nd career Top Fuel win. Brown is now 7-10 against Schumacher and 2-3 in five career final round matches versus "The Sarge."
"All and all, it was a great weekend for our DSR Matco Tools team," Brown said. "We rebounded from the lowest of lows three weeks ago and we're back on track with this Matco Tools car. We won as we kept the win here in the DSR family and it's still a win for Matco and the Army. We're excited and geared up to go to Charlotte and we don't really know what to expect with the four wide, but we know we have a really strong race car."
The next NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series event is the Inaugural Four Wide NHRA Nationals, March 25-28, at zMax Dragway at Concord near Charlotte. Brown competed in the four lane exhibition race at zMax Dragway last September.