TIME, SPEED CONTINUUM BROKEN BY GOODYEAR-SHOD NHRA CARS AT zMAX

Goodyear blimp
Goodyear blimp

Photo by: Eric Gilbert

CONCORD, N.C. (Sept. (18, 2011) – It was a record-blasting weekend in the NHRA’s Full Throttle Drag Racing Series and Goodyear tires were in the middle of the action. Every track record in the professional categories for four-wheel racers fell during the O’Reilly Auto Parts Nationals at zMax Speedway and national records fell victim as well.

The dynamic racing finished a weekend that began with an important effort by Goodyear to benefit America’s finest.

Goodyear kicked off the Support Our Troops campaign during major racing events at two tracks in different parts of the country. In North Carolina, the Top Fuel and Funny Car teams sported tires with Support Our Troops printed on the sidewalls. The tiremaker produced tires with a similar sidewall for the NASCAR Sprint Cup competitors who were scheduled to race on the same day 800 miles away in Joliet, Ill.

Goodyear announced a number of initiatives aimed at supporting American military families, using the company’s involvement in racing to drive consumer awareness.

It was a weekend of stunning performance at zMax Raceway. Matt Hagan became the first Funny Car driver to duck under the four-second mark since the nitro classes started racing to 1,000 feet when he was clocked at 3.995 seconds during qualifying. He backed that time up to make it an official national record when he also turned in the fastest Funny Car run in history, a pass at 322.27 mph. Earlier in the weekend, Jack Beckman established a Funny Car speed record, only to see Hagan eclipse his mark.

Tony Schumacher established new national record for elapsed time in Top Fuel (3.771 seconds) and a track record for speed (325.92 mph). Jason Line set a track record for elapsed time in Pro Stock (6.510 seconds) and teammate Greg Anderson set a track speed record (212.69 mph).

“The cool temperatures and cloudy conditions played a big role in all that performance,” said Bryce Jones, Goodyear’s sales account manager for drag racing. “The warmest track temperatures we saw all day Saturday was 78 degrees and Friday was about the same. Saturday was a little warmer at 91. Our Goodyear Eagles provided plenty of grip for the competitors and a stable racing platform.”

The professional winners at zMax were Antron Brown (Top Fuel), Hagan (Funny Car) and Kurt Johnson (Pro Stock).

The race was the first in the NHRA’s post-season Countdown to the championship. Brown leads Top Fuel with 2,187 points. Spencer Massey is second with 2,171.

Mike Neff, who lost to Hagan in the Funny Car final, leads that category with 2.209 points. Hagan is next with 2,187.

Johnson did not qualify for the Pro Stock Countdown. Jason Line, who lost to Johnson in the final round, maintained the lead in the standings. Line has 2,186 points. Greg Anderson is next with 2,155.