Indy ORP: Antron Brown preview

Antron Brown on Indy "It would be a huge deal if we can do well in this race and put this Matco Tools dragster in the win column in Top Fuel at the U.S. Nationals. I've done it a few times on the bikes, but to do it in Top Fuel would be the icing...

Antron Brown on Indy
"It would be a huge deal if we can do well in this race and put this Matco Tools dragster in the win column in Top Fuel at the U.S. Nationals. I've done it a few times on the bikes, but to do it in Top Fuel would be the icing on the cake on a great season for our MAR Matco Tools team. Our car is running great, so our team has a lot of confidence heading into the U.S. Nationals with Brian (Corradi) and Mark (Oswald) calling the shots for our Matco team. We're ready to rock and roll at ORP (O'Reilly Raceway Park)."

Brian Corradi (crew chief) on Indy
"We're looking forward to getting back to Indy and getting going again after an off week. We're going to concentrate on winning this race and we don't have to worry about the Countdown (to 1). We accomplished our goal of locking up the No. 1 spot and now our entire focus will be on winning the U.S. Nationals for Antron and this Matco (Tools) team."

Antron Brown Indy NHRA Notebook
Two weeks ago at Reading, Pa., Brown powered his Matco Tools dragster to its sixth No. 1 qualifying award of the season with a lap of 3.854 seconds at 315.71 mph. It was the quickest and fastest run of the weekend and earned the Matco team low ET of the meet for the seventh time and top speed of the meet honors for the ninth time this season. On race day, Brown raced to at least the semifinals for the eighth straight race by defeating Brandon Bernstein and Joe Hartley, before losing traction against Rookie of the Year front-runner Spencer Massey in the semifinals. It was Brown's 20th career pole and ninth in Top Fuel.

Brown is a two-time winner of the storied Indianapolis NHRA race. The 16-time Pro Stock Motorcycle winner scored two wins aboard his Suzuki at O'Reilly Raceway Park, including the 50th anniversary U.S. Nationals in 2004. Brown's first U.S. Nationals triumph came in his third try at O.R.P. when he bested John Smith 7.268 to 7.354. Four years later, Brown took home the gold "Wally" trophy by edging Shawn Gann 7.213 to 7.238. In 11 U.S. Nationals appearances, Brown has qualified in the top half of the field nine times and has an average qualifying position of 5.64. His average qualifying position this season is 3.59 and he has qualified in the top half of the 16-car order at 16 of 17 events (Seattle).

Brown secured the top spot in the Countdown to 1 at the Reading NHRA race. The Matco Tools flagship racer will have a 30-point lead entering the Countdown to 1 six-race playoff that begins at the Charlotte race next month. Brown has five wins in eight final round appearances, along with six poles, all category-bests. Last month, Brown made NHRA history becoming just the seventh professional driver to sweep the grueling Western Swing (Denver, Seattle and Sonoma, Calif.). Brown also clocked the fastest run in 1,000-foot racing at 319.75 mph at Bristol, Tenn. in May. Brown has not ranked lower than second this season and has been atop the standings following 12 of 17 races, including the last eight events. The 23-time winner is the only Top Fuel driver to not have lost in the opening round of eliminations this season.

-credit: mar

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Series NHRA
Drivers Antron Brown , Shawn Gann , Brandon Bernstein , Joe Hartley , Spencer Massey