Memphis: Capps/Johnson Jr eliminations summary

Capps gets to Semis at Memphis; Johnson loses in first MEMPHIS, Sept. 22, 2003 - Ron Capps and Tommy Johnson Jr. went in different directions once the rain-delayed O'Reilly Mid-South Nationals resumed Monday at Memphis Motorsports Park. Capps...

Capps gets to Semis at Memphis; Johnson loses in first

MEMPHIS, Sept. 22, 2003 - Ron Capps and Tommy Johnson Jr. went in different directions once the rain-delayed O'Reilly Mid-South Nationals resumed Monday at Memphis Motorsports Park.

Capps had a more competitive day than his Don Prudhomme Skoal Racing teammate, advancing to the semifinals before losing to eventual race winner and new POWERade Series points leader Whit Bazemore. Johnson battled not only Tony Pedregon but tire shake in the first round and lost to both.

"I thought (crew chief) Todd Okuhara did a great job of tuning the car because there were hit-and-miss conditions (Monday) because of the weather," said Capps, whose 4.862-second time at 311.62 mph defeated Cruz Pedregon in the opening round. It was the third-quickest run of the round.

Capps' Skoal Racing Green Camaro added a 5.020 at 285.11 to defeat Gary Densham's slowing 8.173 at 102.56 in the quarterfinals. Bazemore stopped Capps with a 4.991 to a 5.014.

"We thought the car would run a 4.90 but it spun the tires about 800 feet and slowed down," Capps recalled. He qualified fifth with a 4.857 at 312.57.

Johnson's Blue Skoal Racing Camaro qualified 11th and lost to Tony Pedregon, 4.825 to 4.965.

"We just didn't seem to click this weekend," Johnson commented. "We struggled and the car shook the tires real hard at about 1.2 seconds into the run. It shook like crazy against Pedregon and I pedaled it. The car took off again but I couldn't catch him. Oddly enough, we did run our best speed of the weekend against Pedregon, 316.15 mph."

Johnson jumped to a lead off the starting line with a .048 reaction time to a .085 but couldn't hold it when the tires began shaking.

Capps remained sixth in points with 947. He was able to add to his margin over Johnson, who is seventh at 898. Capps had been seven points in front going to Memphis. Bazemore replaced Tony Pedregon atop the Funny Car standings with 1376 points to 1369 for Pedregon.

Prudhomme's team resumes competition in the CarQuest Nationals, Friday through Sunday at Route 66 Raceway in Joliet, Ill.

Qualified: Capps, No. 5, 4.857 seconds at 313.15 mph; Johnson, No. 11, 4.938 at 249.67 mph

First round: Capps, 4.862 at 311.63 def. Cruz Pedregon, 4.964 at 313.73; Tony Pedregon, 4.825 at 315.76; Quarterfinals: Capps, 5.020 at 285.11 def. Gary Densham, 8.173 at 102.56; Semifinals: Whit Bazemore, 4.991 at 291.82 def. Capps, 5.014 at 299.66.

Pro winners: Tony Schumacher, Top Fuel; Whit Bazemore, Funny car; Greg Anderson, Pro Stock.

Funny Car Standings:
1, Whit Bazemore, 1376
2, Tony Pedregon,1369
3, John Force, 1183
4, Gary Densham, 1079
5, Del Worsham, 1040
6, Ron Capps, 947
7, Tommy Johnson Jr., 898
8, Gary Scelzi, 849
9, Dean Skuza, 829
10, Cruz Pedregon, 820

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Tony Pedregon , Dean Skuza , Del Worsham , Whit Bazemore , Ron Capps , John Force , Tony Schumacher , Gary Scelzi , Gary Densham , Cruz Pedregon , Don Prudhomme , Tommy Johnson Jr.