Norwalk: Ron Capps final report

CAPPS ADVANCES TO SECOND ROUND IN NORWALK NORWALK, Ohio (June 28, 2009) - Ron Capps advanced to the second round at the NHRA Nationals at Summit Motorsports Park today, and maintained his third-place position in the point standings. Enjoying a...

CAPPS ADVANCES TO SECOND ROUND IN NORWALK

NORWALK, Ohio (June 28, 2009) - Ron Capps advanced to the second round at the NHRA Nationals at Summit Motorsports Park today, and maintained his third-place position in the point standings.

Enjoying a return to the top half of the field in qualifying for the first time in three events after securing No. 4 in the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Funny Car, Capps defeated No. 13 qualifier Jeff Arend in the opening round of eliminations using a 4.273-second elapsed time at 275.45 mph to do so.

Having lane choice again for his quarterfinal match-up against Ashley Force Hood, Capps, the NAPA AUTO PARTS crew and crew chief Ed "Ace" McCulloch were prepared to begin a march to their fifth national-event win of the season and a return to the top of the standings. But a hot and tricky track, a backfire and an early deployment of a parachute resulted in a victory for Force Hood instead.

Capps took the lead at the starting lights and held it until the backfire. Force Hood then drove around him, also losing traction as her car sashayed down the track for the win. Capps' 4.795/174.23 was no match for Force Hood's 4.703/205.72.

"The bummer is, and I'd rather have it because of the safety aspect," explained Capps, "the 'chute was deployed because the car backfired (part of the NHRA 'safety box' system on each nitro car).

"This has been a tough weekend on everybody, especially crew chiefs trying to get these cars down the track. There were hardly any cars that made it without spinning the tires at the other end and all that does is hurt parts. That's what happened. We got out in front of her and it spun the tires real hard, backfired the engine, and at that point it put the 'chutes out and that was like dropping an anchor.

"Ashley did a great job," he was quick to add. "I tell you, her driving is wonderful right now because she caught the car and was able to get around me and that's tough to do on even a good race track and cool conditions. So, my hat's off to her for doing what she did to get around us.

"We were looking to get back in the points lead and we'll just take it from here and head to Denver. At least we have lane choice on Interstate 70 to Colorado."

Next up is the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals at Bandimere Speedway in Morrison, Colo., outside of Denver, July 10-12.

-credit: dsr

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Series NHRA
Drivers Ron Capps , Jeff Arend