Infinenon Raceway Sears Point
Johnny Gray Expects His Return To Top 10 Will Begin At Fram/Autolite NHRA Nationals
Johnny Gray heads to Infineon Raceway here for this weekend’s 24th-annual FRAM/Autolite NHRA Nationals determined to fight his way back into the top 10 of the 2011 NHRA Full Throttle Funny Car standings.
Five points – less than one race-round win – separates the Service Central Racing Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car driver from Tim Wilkerson, who holds the 10th and final position for the Countdown to 1 playoffs.
“Despite what happened in the Denver race (a first-round loss to Wilkerson), I’m am still very confident we will claw our way back into the top 10 and then show the entire Funny Car category just what this Service Central car can do,” said the 58-year-old Don Schumacher Racing driver. “We knew Denver would be difficult, because it is for every team, and we knew the results there really wouldn’t tell us much about our car.
“We had a great test in Indy prior to last week’s race on the mountain and this car now responds to changes and adjustments like it’s supposed to, which is an improvement from the first half of the season.”
Including the Sonoma contest, second leg in the grueling Western Swing of three races on consecutive weekends, Gray has four races to move into the playoff pack.
“Between Rob’s (Wendland, crew chief) abilities, plus the resources of the entire DSR organization, I know we’ll get the job done,” Gray said. “I’m coming into Sonoma (nitro set to begin 4 p.m. PT Friday) with my head held high. What happened in Denver (he dropped a cylinder just after the start of the round, which took him out of the groove), was not indicative of an issue with the car – it was just something that happens in racing.
“I believe we now have a good car and we’ll show it in the next couple of events!”
By: don schumacher racing