Gainesville: Tony Schumacher final report

SCHUMACHER TAKEN OUT IN QUARTERFINALS GAINESVILLE, Fla., March 15 - U.S. Army Top Fuel driver Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher lost in the quarterfinals of the ACDelco Gatornationals here Sunday at Gainesville Raceway. Schumacher, who was the ...

SCHUMACHER TAKEN OUT IN QUARTERFINALS

GAINESVILLE, Fla., March 15 - U.S. Army Top Fuel driver Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher lost in the quarterfinals of the ACDelco Gatornationals here Sunday at Gainesville Raceway.

Schumacher, who was the defending event champion, dropped a tire-smoking affair to his Don Schumacher Racing teammate, Cory McClenathan.

"That was a tough one to swallow," said the Chicago-area resident. "It appeared like we might get the win light, but he just got around me at the finish line." The six-time world champion left the starting line before McClenathan and was ahead by about a half of a car length at the 330-foot mark before both cars began to lose traction. It was McClenathan who got his dragster to recover first.

"It was definitely a classic pedal fest," added Schumacher. "You have to tip your hat to Cory. He got the job done today."

En route to the match up with his teammate, Schumacher disposed of Del Cox Jr. with a solid 3.920-second pass at 308.14 mph in the opening round of eliminations.

"We really had a good car this weekend," he added. "It's unfortunate our race day ended the way it did, but we'll come back strong in a couple of weeks. Failure is never an option with our Soldiers and it's not with us either."

Despite posting his second quarterfinal loss of the season, Schumacher will hold on to a top five spot in the standings going into the O'Reilly Spring Nationals, March 27- 29, at Houston Raceway Park.

Before traveling to Texas, Schumacher and his team will join NASCAR's Tony Stewart (who owns the No. 39 U.S. Army Sprint Cup Series car driven by Ryan Newman) for a visit to Fort Knox, Ky.

"We'll go up to Fort Knox on Thursday and enjoy our meeting with the Soldiers and then we're going to come out swinging in the Lone Star State," said Schumacher.

-credit: dsr

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Series NHRA
Drivers Tony Schumacher , Cory McClenathan , Don Schumacher