Schumacher looking to continue winning ways at home JOLIET, Ill., June 1, 2010 - Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher comes "home" this weekend looking to continue his winning ways - and avenge last year's first-round ouster - at the 13th Annual United...
Schumacher looking to continue winning ways at home
JOLIET, Ill., June 1, 2010 - Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher comes "home" this weekend looking to continue his winning ways - and avenge last year's first-round ouster - at the 13th Annual United Association Route 66 NHRA Nationals here at Route 66 Raceway. "I go into every race looking to win, but I especially want to do well here on my turf, on a track just over an hour from where I live," said the seven-time and defending NHRA Full Throttle Top Fuel Dragster champion. "Home cooking has been good for me in the past and, coupled with the great car my U.S. Army crew has been giving me lately, I expect results more like 2008 than 2009."
In 2008 Schumacher qualified first, had the fastest dragster of the weekend and went on to win this race; in 2009 he went out in a first-round upset loss.
Schumacher moved into third place in the championship standings two weeks ago at the latest race in the 2010 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series with his win in Topeka and is 11 points - less than one round - out of second.
"I feel good; love being home among family and friends and really look forward to this race," he said. "It also felt good winning in Topeka and getting the Army's 100th drag-racing win (Schumacher-60, Don Prudhomme-24, Angelle Sampey-10 and Antron Brown-6).
"Driving for the Army is a special honor and responsibility, because I represent the men and women who have dedicated their lives to protecting ours and our freedom. Our team approaches its job the way these Army Strong soldiers do theirs - with resolve to successfully accomplish their mission and to never accept defeat."
Another local driver to race under Army colors
Schumacher's driving made a major impression in 2002 on a 10-year-old Bolling Brook (Ill.) boy when he attended the Joliet race. Corbin Mehrbrodt, who said meeting "The Sarge" sparked an interest in both the Army and drag racing, will drive his Super Comp car - sporting Army livery - this weekend, less than two weeks before reporting for basic training.
"I saw Tony eight years ago and decided a drag racer is what I wanted to be," said the now 18 year old who had been racing since the age of seven (go karts, sprint cars and junior dragsters). "I also saw the soldiers at the race and developed an interest in becoming one of them. I spent the next several years talking to recruiters and at 17 signed up for delayed entry.
"I report to Fort Knox June 30 to begin my Army service and training as a tanker." The Super Comp car, driver suit and crew uniforms will mimic Schumacher's in Army colors and design.
Schumacher's teammate Antron Brown, looks to drive his Matco Tools/U.S. Army Top Fuel dragster higher in the championship standings than his present fifth position. On the U.S. Army NASCAR Racing front, Ryan Newman, who drives the No. 39 Chevrolet for Stewart Haas Racing, competes Sunday in the Gillette Fusion ProGlide 500 presented by Target at Pocono International Raceway in Pennsylvania.