Antron Brown Charges Into Seattle Looking For Second NHRA Northwest Nationals Crown
Antron Brown drives his Matco Tools Top Fuel dragster into this weekend’s 24th-annual NHRA Northwest Nationals here fresh off his third win of the 2011 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series season last week down the coast in Northern California.
A final-round appearance again this weekend would mean three in a row at Pacific Raceways where Brown won in 2009, en route to his sweep of the Western Swing (winning three races on consecutive weekends in Denver, Sonoma and Seattle), before finishing as the runner up last year to then Don Schumacher Racing teammate Cory McClenathan.
Thanks to his win in Sonoma, the 35-year-old DSR hot-rod pilot changed the playoff picture while pressuring the other Top Fuel drivers.
“First we defeated Del Worsham, who’s the points leader, in the quarterfinals,” said the New Jersey native. “And when we won, we went around Del’s teammate Larry Dixon up to the third spot in the standings – and helped our teammates Tony Schumacher and Spencer Massey (second and fifth, respectively) as well.
“We can’t sweep the Western Swing like we did in 2009 when we won this race (Massey won this year’s Denver race after defeating Brown in the semifinals), but we can win two out of three.”
According to Brown, being good at this time of the year is the game plan.
“We’re on a roll,” he said. “We have shown we can beat any dragster in the series, regardless of what team they represent, which is really important as we get ready for the playoffs.
“We want to win races, as many as we can during the season, but our primary goal is winning the championship. That means being ready for the Countdown – mentally as well as mechanically. You don’t want any part of what you are doing to peak too early and we think we’re peaking at the right time.”
Including this weekend’s event, there are three regular-season races remaining before the Countdown to 1 begins (following the Labor Day weekend U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis). The points are then reset for the 10 drivers at the top of the standings who will compete for the championship during the final six races of 2011.
“The competition will resume right away in qualifying,” said Brown about the upcoming event. “There are bonus points for the top three in each of the four sessions (first nitro run scheduled for 2:30 p.m. PT Friday), plus points for your overall qualifying position.
“This group of Top Fuel cars and drivers is so good and so close, that every point matters, so we want to do well on
By: don schumacher racing