Pomona Finals Recap

POMONA, Calif. - Jerry Toliver earned his first career Funny Car victory Sunday at the 35th annual Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals. Mike Dunn, Jeg Coughlin Jr., Antron Brown and Steve Johns were also winners in...

POMONA, Calif. - Jerry Toliver earned his first career Funny Car victory Sunday at the 35th annual Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals. Mike Dunn, Jeg Coughlin Jr., Antron Brown and Steve Johns were also winners in their respective categories at Pomona Raceway during the final of 22 events in the $40 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series. Huntington Beach, Calif.'s Toliver outlasted nine-time NHRA Winston Funny Car champion John Force in a classic tire-smoking battle when he covered the quarter-mile in 6.717 seconds at 300.33 mph in his WWF Racing Corvette, bettering Force's run of 8.897 at 122.31. Prior to Force, Toliver drove past Del Worsham, Tony Pedregon and Dale Creasy Jr. "I'm just so excited that I can't see straight," said Toliver. "This was a dream come true. To live it is amazing. This my home track and I'm glad to be here. I blew the tires off right away. In my peripheral vision I saw (John) and then I saw his smoke go up and I was in the middle of pedaling mine and then I was gone. Then I saw nothing but the finish line." Dunn, from Wrightsville, Pa., completed a sweep of the Pomona events when his Team Mopar Top Fuel dragster sped down the track in 4.668 at 291.35 to hold off Doug Kalitta and his pass of 4.692 at 301.60. Dunn captured his fourth victory of the year as he defeated Larry Dixon, Jim Head and the 1999 NHRA Winston champion Tony Schumacher before meeting Kalitta in the finale. Dunn also won the season-opening event here in February. "I never really had any luck here before," said Dunn. "To come here and win both the races this year was a great achievement for this team and it was our last race with Mopar, but we're plenty happy. The beginning and the end of the year were great but the middle stunk. The middle was one of those things that happened and we can't dwell on it. But, we still want to go out as a winner. I wanted to get that fourth win this year because that is the most races I've won in a year. It was also my 20th career victory." Coughlin, from Columbus, Ohio, had just enough with his pass of 6.876 at 200.29 to hold off the current NHRA Winston Pro Stock champion Warren Johnson and his run of 6.977 at 194.97. Coughlin outran V. Gaines, Jim Yates, Riche Stevens and Johnson to complete his season's sweep of the Pomona events. The victory secured the number two spot for Coughlin in the NHRA Winston points standings ahead of Kurt Johnson. "Anytime you find your way to the winner's circle you've had an excellent day," said Coughlin. "We had nothing handed to us today. Our whole gang fought tooth-and-nail to get the car dialed-in. We made four beautiful straight runs today and had lane choice all day. Running a track record (elapsed time) and going over 200 mph in the final was certainly our goal and we couldn't be happier to do it. We have second place right now with Kurt's early exit today. We are excited to be in second, but we're hoping this is Warren's last year for a victory speech at the awards ceremony." Brown, from Chesterfield, N.J., won his third Pro Stock Motorcycle race this season when Craig Treble fouled at the start. Brown defeated Chris Reuter, Steve Johnson, Greg Underdahl and Treble on his way to the winner's circle for the third time this year. "It was an awesome day," said Brown. "I saw that red light so I didn't do too great of a job driving and I went towards the centerline but that (elapsed time) was awesome. My crew chief and my team did a great job. I set my goals real high. I was going for the championship this year because I knew I had the power to do it. Then I wanted to finish in the top three and we accomplished that. All that hard work paid off and next year we're going after the championship." Earlier in the day Matt Hines clinched his third straight NHRA Winston championship when he earned a quarterfinal victory and Angelle Seeling did not advance. Hines won only three events this year after a 10-win performance last season. He reset the national elapsed time record twice in the latter part of the season to keep his championship hopes alive. After Seeling lost to Greg Underdahl on a holeshot, Hines defeated Tony Mullen to earn the title. "When I saw that (Angelle) lost that round I got a little worried," said Hines. "That has happened to me a couple of times, where she goes out there and loses in front of me and then I lose. Fortunately I was able to keep it together, have a good light, a good run and win the championship. Tony wasn't going to lie down at all, he had a .431 light and a good run. Things worked out well for us today and we got that check. It's unbelievable." Lancaster, Pa.'s Johns was quicker off the line to complete his run of 7.561 at 178.85 to defeat the newly crowned NHRA Winston Pro Stock Truck champion Bob Panella who covered the distance in 7.504 at 178.50. Upstart Johns was able to hold off Scott Perin, Brad Jeter, Mark Osborne and Panella for his emotional win. "We came here with a descent engine in the truck," said Johns. "I can't believe it...I still can't really believe I won this thing. I knew I had to be about perfect to win. Then, you never know in these things, the car could get out of shape or the transmission could break. Nothing is bullet proof. You don't have a winner until that light comes on." The 2000 NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series kicks off with the AutoZone Winternationals at Pomona Raceway, Feb. 3-6.

POMONA, Calif. -- Sunday's final results from the 35th annual Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals at Pomona Raceway. The $1.7 million race is the final of 22 events in the $40 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series:

Top Fuel - Mike Dunn, Wrightsville, Pa., 4.668 seconds, 291.38 mph def. Doug Kalitta, Ann Arbor, Mich., 4.692 seconds, 301.60 mph.

Funny Car - Jerry Toliver, Huntington Beach, Calif., Corvette, 6.717, 300.33 def. John Force, Yorba Linda, Calif., Ford Mustang, 8.897, 122.31.

Pro Stock - Jeg Coughlin, Columbus, Ohio, Oldsmobile Cutlass, 6.876, 200.29 def. Warren Johnson, Buford, Ga., Pontiac Firebird, 6.977, 194.97.

Pro Stock Bike - Antron Brown, Chesterfield, N.J., Suzuki GSXR, 7.257, 180.86 def. Craig Treble, Chandler, Ariz., Suzuki, foul.

Pro Stock Truck - Steve Johns, Mountville, Va., Chevrolet S-10, 7.561, 178.85 def. Bob Panella Jr, Stockton, Calif., S-10, 7.504, 178.50.

Federal-Mogul Dragster - Rick Santos, San Leandro, Calif., 5.448, 251.81 def. Mark Woods, Kingsburg, Calif., broke.

Federal-Mogul Funny Car - Sam Blue, Red Wing, Minn., '97 Oldsmobile Achieva, 5.647, 253.75 def. Bucky Austin, Fife, Wash., '98 Pontiac Firebird, 5.692, 251.91.

Comp Eliminator - Jeff Gillette, Benicia, Calif., Dragster, 7.013, 191.16 def. Clint Sallee, Glendive, Mont., Dragster, 7.624, 173.56.

Super Stock - Bo Butner, Floyds Knobs, Ind., '98 Pontiac Grand Am, 8.734, 156.05 def. Jeff Taylor, Lumberton, N.C., '99 Chevrolet S-10, 9.301, 143.47.

Stock - Chuck Rayburn, Castro Valley, Calif., '71 Dodge Challenger, 10.542, 124.55 def. Al Corda, Elk Mound, Wis., '70 Challenger, 10.521, 126.66.

Super Comp - Damon Dabbs, Garland, Texas, Dragster, 8.885, 165.21 def. John Larsen, Salt Lake City, Dragster, foul.

Super Gas - Mike Ferderer, Buckley, Wash., '96 Pontiac Grand Prix, 9.933, 141.31 def. Bob Herr, Sacramento, Calif., '63 Chevrolet Corvette, 10.007, 160.18.

POMONA, Calif. -- Final round-by-round results from Sunday's 35th annual Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals at Pomona Raceway, the final of 22 events in the $40 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series:

TOP FUEL:

ROUND ONE -- Don Lampus, Garland, Texas, 4.756, 292.46 def. Scott Kalitta, Ypsilanti, Mich., 10.020, 79.54; Kenny Bernstein, Lake Forest, Calif., 4.640, 318.47 def. Bob Vandergriff, Cumming, Ga., 4.700, 287.35; Jim Head, Columbus, Ohio, 4.691, 303.98 def. Cory McClenathan, Anaheim, Calif., 10.887, 67.12; Joe Amato, Exeter, Pa., 5.549, 241.41 def. Tim Gibson, Irvine, Calif., 9.598, 80.32; Gary Scelzi, Fresno, Calif., 4.624, 313.51 def. Randy Parks, Lombard, Ill., 5.121, 201.19; Tony Schumacher, Park Ridge, Ill., 4.707, 304.53 def. Andrew Cowin, Huntington Beach, Calif., 4.920, 272.12; Mike Dunn, Wrightsville, Pa., 4.651, 299.53 def. Larry Dixon, San Diego, 4.839, 275.79; Doug Kalitta, Ann Arbor, Mich., 4.574, 308.00 def. Terry Mullins, Oak Ridge, Tenn., 4.800, 296.96; QUARTERFINALS -- Dunn, 4.640, 303.09 def. Head, 4.712, 302.82; Schumacher, 4.622, 314.68 def. Bernstein, 5.856, 152.64; Scelzi, 4.627, 317.79 def. Lampus, 5.842, 148.71; D. Kalitta, 4.561, 303.64 def. Amato, 4.581, 319.75; SEMIFINALS -- Dunn, 4.710, 297.68 def. Schumacher, 11.054, 79.28; D. Kalitta, 4.553, 314.31 def. Scelzi, 5.192, 184.32; FINAL -- Dunn, 4.668, 291.38 def. D. Kalitta, 4.692, 301.60.

FUNNY CAR:

ROUND ONE -- Tony Pedregon, Gardena, Calif., Ford Mustang, 4.981, 304.74 def. Tommy Johnson Jr., Ottumwa, Iowa, Pontiac Firebird, 5.159, 282.36; Ron Capps, La Costa, Calif., Chevrolet Camaro, 4.970, 291.89 def. Al Hofmann, Umatilla, Fla., Firebird, 5.045, 295.14; Jim Epler, Phoenix, Firebird, 5.056, 300.00 def. Cory Lee, Sierra Del Oro, Calif., Dodge Avenger, 5.209, 267.91; John Force, Yorba Linda, Calif., Mustang, 5.082, 292.27 def. Tim Wilkerson, Springfield, Ill., Firebird, 5.295, 222.03; Jerry Toliver, Huntington Beach, Calif., Chevrolet Corvette, 5.053, 304.87 def. Del Worsham, Costa Mesa, Calif., Firebird, 5.242, 263.15; Scotty Cannon, Lyman, S.C., Camaro, 5.513, 270.81 def. Whit Bazemore, Indianapolis, Camaro, 6.319, 259.86; Dean Skuza, Brecksville, Ohio, Avenger, 5.036, 302.21 def. Bob Gilbertson, Gastonia, N.C., Firebird, 5.391, 212.29; Dale Creasy Jr., Lansing, Ill., Firebird, 5.929, 177.02 def. Frank Pedregon, Alta Loma, Calif., Firebird, 7.248, 119.04; QUARTERFINALS -- Toliver, 5.229, 306.74 def. T. Pedregon, 7.394, 154.71; Creasy Jr., 5.730, 243.85 def. Capps, 7.103, 136.23; Epler, 5.000, 299.13 def. Skuza, 11.609, 82.62; Force, 4.836, 318.09 def. Cannon, 5.168, 289.88; SEMIFINALS -- Toliver, 6.879, 250.41 def. Creasy Jr., 19.531, 51.73; Force, 7.749, 218.58 def. Epler, 8.611, 95.36; FINAL -- Toliver, 6.717, 300.33 def. Force, 8.897, 122.31.

PRO STOCK:

ROUND ONE -- Richie Stevens, New Orleans, Pontiac Firebird, 7.370, 173.83 def. Mike Thomas, Knoxville, Tenn., Firebird, 8.495, 115.90; Bruce Allen, Arlington, Texas, Firebird, 7.012, 196.19 def. Kurt Johnson, Lawrenceville, Ga., Chevrolet Camaro, 6.983, 197.48; Mark Pawuk, Bath, Ohio, Firebird, 6.952, 195.25 def. Steve Schmidt, Indianapolis, Firebird, 7.515, 140.80; Jeg Coughlin, Columbus, Ohio, Oldsmobile Cutlass, 6.917, 198.88 def. V. Gaines, Lakewood, Colo., Camaro, 6.966, 198.17; Warren Johnson, Buford, Ga., Firebird, 6.901, 199.88 def. Darrell Alderman, Morehead, Ky., Dodge Avenger, 7.021, 196.33; Troy Coughlin, Columbus, Ohio, Cutlass, 6.927, 198.29 def. Mike Trumble, Pasadena, Texas, Firebird, 7.045, 196.73; Arturo Delgado, McAllen, Texas, Firebird, 7.017, 196.33 def. Tom Martino, Farmingdale, N.J., Firebird, 7.033, 196.85; Jim Yates, Alexandria, Va., Firebird, 6.936, 197.77 def. Allen Johnson, Greeneville, Tenn., Avenger, 6.968, 197.74; QUARTERFINALS -- Allen, 6.997, 196.24 def. Delgado, 8.478, 116.59; Stevens, 6.980, 195.76 def. T. Coughlin, 8.856, 101.39; J. Coughlin, 6.906, 198.50 def. Yates, 6.992, 197.45; W. Johnson, 6.890, 200.14 def. Pawuk, 6.945, 198.03; SEMIFINALS -- J. Coughlin, 6.884, 199.14 def. Stevens, 6.950, 197.31; W. Johnson, 6.895, 199.85 def. Allen, 6.962, 198.15; FINAL -- J. Coughlin, 6.876, 200.29 def. W. Johnson, 6.977, 194.97.

PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE:

ROUND ONE -- Tony Mullen, Bradenton, Fla., Suzuki, 7.356, 180.60 def. Larry Cook, West Linn, Ore., Suzuki, 7.420, no speed; Angelle Seeling, New Orleans, Suzuki, 7.254, 178.73 def. Fred Camarena, Placentia, Calif., Suzuki, 7.568, no speed; Greg Underdahl, Minneapolis, Suzuki, 7.368, 177.04 def. Ron Ayers, Greenville, N.C., Suzuki, 7.484, 175.39; Matt Hines, Trinidad, Colo., Suzuki, 7.233, 182.65 def. Brian DeLong, Circleville, Ohio, Suzuki, 7.634, 171.34; Antron Brown, Chesterfield, N.J., Suzuki, 7.427, 162.68 def. Chris Reuter, Gretna, Neb., Suzuki, 7.819, 160.16; Craig Treble, Chandler, Ariz., Suzuki, 7.264, 183.05 def. Gary Tonglet, Metairie, La., Suzuki, 7.487, 171.58; David Schultz, Fort Myers, Fla., Suzuki, 7.345, 181.86 def. Brian Ayers, Greenville, N.C., Suzuki, 7.478, 173.14; Steve Johnson, Chatsworth, Calif., Suzuki, 7.430, 184.72 def. Joe DeSantis, Rootstown, Ohio, Suzuki, broke; QUARTERFINALS -- Brown, 7.354, 181.06 def. Johnson, 7.405, 174.44; Underdahl, 7.354, 176.40 def. Seeling, 7.254, 177.35; Treble, 7.273, 181.30 def. Schultz, 7.368, 182.33; Hines, 7.253, 183.54 def. Mullen, 7.345, 176.95; SEMIFINALS -- Brown, 7.319, 182.70 def. Underdahl, 7.341, 178.73; Treble, 7.286, 178.85 def. Hines, 10.840, 72.87; FINAL -- Brown, 7.257, 180.86 def. Treble, foul.

PRO STOCK TRUCK:

ROUND ONE -- Randy Daniels, Grantsboro, N.C., Chevrolet S-10, 7.641, 177.74 def. Brian Self, Houston, S-10, 7.617, 175.02; Brad Jeter, Greenville, S.C., S-10, 7.599, 177.93 def. John Coughlin, Columbus, Ohio, S-10, 7.620, 176.81; John Lingenfelter, Decatur, Ind., S-10, 7.674, 177.37 def. Don Smith, Keller, Texas, S-10, 7.674, 177.28; Mark Osborne, Abingdon, Va., S-10, 7.568, 178.33 def. Craig Eaton, Glendale, Ariz., Dodge Dakota, 7.647, 176.19; Todd Patterson, Augusta, Kan., Dakota, 7.639, 175.82 def. Jerry Haas, St. Louis, S-10, 7.558, 178.71; Steve Johns, Mountville, Va., S-10, 7.559, 178.26 def. Scott Perin, Pen Argyl, Pa., S-10, 7.633, 177.14; Bob Panella Jr, Stockton, Calif., S-10, 7.532, 178.50 def. Mark Whisnant, Stockbridge, Ga., S-10, 7.681, 175.89; Greg Stanfield, Bossier City, La., S-10, 7.565, 177.49 def. Mike Coughlin, Columbus, Ohio, S-10, 7.640, 176.93;

QUARTERFINALS -- Osborne, 7.588, 178.24 def. Lingenfelter, 7.647, 177.04; Stanfield, 7.576, 176.84 def. Patterson, 7.667, 175.62; Johns, 7.569, 178.52 def. Jeter, 7.604, 177.74; Panella Jr, 7.530, 178.26 def. Daniels, 7.677, 177.35; SEMIFINALS -- Johns, 7.574, 178.10 def. Osborne, 7.615, 177.72; Panella Jr, 7.514, 178.24 def. Stanfield, 7.601, 177.81; FINAL -- Johns, 7.561, 178.85 def. Panella Jr, 7.504, 178.50.

Final Point Standings:

TOP FUEL: 1. Tony Schumacher, 1,488; 2. Gary Scelzi, 1,380; 3. Joe Amato, 1,345; 4. Mike Dunn, 1,327; 5. Doug Kalitta, 1,306; 6. Kenny Bernstein, 1,260; 7. Doug Herbert, 1,259; 8. Larry Dixon, 1,210; 8. Cory McClenathan, 1,149; 10. Bob Vandergriff, 1,131. FUNNY CAR: 1. John Force, 2,071; 2. Tony Pedregon, 1,604; 3. Whit Bazemore, 1,413; 4. Frank Pedregon, 1,028; 5. Dean Skuza, 977; 6. Jim Epler, 960; 7. Del Worsham, 928; 8. Jerry Toliver, 923; 9. Ron Capps, 891; 10. Tommy Johnson Jr. 881.

PRO STOCK: 1. Warren Johnson, 1,802; 2. Jeg Coughlin Jr., 1,458; 3. Kurt Johnson, 1,434; 4. Jim Yates, 1,288; 5. Richie Stevens, 1,141; 6. Troy Coughlin, 1,046; 7. Mike Edwards, 1,029; 8. Mark Pawuk, 1,004; 9. Allen Johnson, 916; 10. Greg Anderson, 795.

PRO STOCK Truck: 1. Bob Panella, 1,163; 2. Brad Jeter, 1,042; 3. Mark Osborne, 1,014; 4. Mike Coughlin, 856; 5. Randy Daniels, 817; 6. Todd Patterson, 608; 7. Tim Freeman, 607; 8. Larry Kopp, 580; 9. Craig Eaton, 562; 10. Jerry Haas, 527.

PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE: 1. Matt Hines, 1,208; 2. Angelle Seeling, 1,200; 3. Antron Brown, 1,033; 4. David Schultz, 958; 5. Tony Mullen, 847; 6. Craig Treble, 782; 7. Greg Underdahl, 745; 8. John Smith, 726; 7. 9. Steve Johnson, 659; 10. Gary Tonglet, 590.

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Series NHRA
Drivers Jim Head , Doug Herbert , Antron Brown , Frank Pedregon , Mike Thomas , Matt Hines , Jeg Coughlin , Troy Coughlin , Bob Panella , Larry Dixon , Mike Dunn , Darrell Alderman , Kenny Bernstein , Brad Jeter , Mark Pawuk , Kurt Johnson , Warren Johnson , Bob Gilbertson , Jim Epler , Tony Pedregon , Dean Skuza , Del Worsham , Whit Bazemore , Ron Capps , John Force , Tony Schumacher , Joe Amato , Gary Scelzi , Doug Kalitta , Greg Anderson , Andrew Cowin , Ron Ayers , Todd Patterson , Larry Kopp , Randy Daniels , Mike Coughlin , Rick Santos , John Lingenfelter , Dale Creasy Jr. , Al Corda , Craig Treble , Cory McClenathan , Scott Kalitta , Greg Stanfield , Bruce Allen , Tom Martino , Tim Wilkerson , Fred Camarena , Greg Underdahl , Tim Freeman , Allen Johnson , Don Lampus , Chris Reuter , Steve Schmidt , Tim Gibson , Mark Whisnant , Cory Lee , Bucky Austin , Brian Self , Mike Trumble , Bo Butner , Jerry Haas , Arturo Delgado , Jerry Toliver , Bob Vandergriff , Steve Johnson , Joe DeSantis , Mike Edwards , Steve J , Tommy Johnson Jr.