Memphis: Gary Scelzi preview

DEFENDING MEMPHIS CHAMP SCELZI READY TO DO IT AGAIN FRESNO, Calif. (Sept. 24, 2008) - Gary Scelzi is a two-time titlist at the NHRA Mid-South Nationals at Memphis (Tenn.) Motorsports Park: once in Top Fuel in 2000 and again last year in Funny ...

DEFENDING MEMPHIS CHAMP SCELZI READY TO DO IT AGAIN

FRESNO, Calif. (Sept. 24, 2008) - Gary Scelzi is a two-time titlist at the NHRA Mid-South Nationals at Memphis (Tenn.) Motorsports Park: once in Top Fuel in 2000 and again last year in Funny Car.

In a tough 2008 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series season, the four-time NHRA world champion has struggled with the performance of the Mopar/Oakley Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car. But with more input from the Don Schumacher Racing crew-chief brain trust, including Richard Hogan who is helping Todd Okuhara while Okuhara recovers from an inner-ear infection, and a new chassis, the team has shown promise in the last few events.

This season has been one of the most competitive in many years, with fields boasting as many as 21 cars trying to make it into the top 16 in order to race on Sunday. While it's exciting competition for the fans, seeing their favorite drivers not qualify on Saturday or lose early on Sunday could be frustrating, but not more than it is for the drivers.

Scelzi is confident that the Mopar/Oakley Dodge team is ready for a comeback this weekend as the season winds down to the final four events. "We won it last year. It's normally hot there, and it's going to be a lot cooler the way the weather looks right now," he said.

"There's four races to go, and if winning the event last year means anything, which it probably doesn't but we're hoping it does, we're ready. The Mopar/Oakley Dodge is getting better every race, so maybe we can pull something off there and maybe get our first win of the season."

In 2000 in Memphis Scelzi defeated Larry Dixon in Top Fuel, and last year he sent his DSR teammate Jack Beckman packing.

-credit: dsr

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Larry Dixon , Gary Scelzi , Jack Beckman , Don Schumacher