Pomona: Goodyear finale fast facts

* The NHRA returns to its historic home for Autombile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals at the Pomona Raceway. The same track also hosted the season-opening Autozone Winternationals. Goodyear-equipped cars won six titles at the Feb. 3-6...

* The NHRA returns to its historic home for Autombile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals at the Pomona Raceway. The same track also hosted the season-opening Autozone Winternationals. Goodyear-equipped cars won six titles at the Feb. 3-6 event. Those wins included Gary Scelzi (Top Fuel), Jerry Tolliver (Funny Car), Jeg Coughlin Jr. (Pro Stock), Bob Panella (Pro Stock/Truck), Bryan Morrison (Competition Eliminator), and Don Little (Stock).

* Goodyear will be represented in 11 of the 12 NHRA classes competing at Pomona. They include four Winston Pro classes (Top Fuel, Funny Car, Pro Stock and Pro Stock Truck), two Federal-Mogul (FM Dragster, FM Funny Car) and five Sportsman classes (Competition Eliminator, Super Stock, Stock, Super Comp and Super Gas).

* With 126 event wins in NHRA National competition, Goodyear is the leading tire manufacturer in 2000. The company takes an average of 500 tires to each NHRA National -- 250 for the Winston Pro competitors and 250 for the Sportsman categories.

* Goodyear claimed all four NHRA Winston Drag Racing titles in which it competes. Gary Scelzi and Bob Panella locked up the Top Fuel and Pro Stock/Truck championships at the O'Reilly Fall Nationals in Ennis, Texas, last Saturday. John Force clinched the Funny Car title at Houston Raceway Park one week earlier. Jeg Coughlin Jr., driving the JEG'S Mail Order Racing/Coughlin Bros. Racing Oldsmobile, claimed the first 2000 title for Goodyear, winning the Pro Stock title at Memphis, Tenn.

"Goodyear would like to congratulate Gary Scelzi and Team Winston, John Force and the Castrol Racing crew, and Bob Panella and the entire Panella Motorsports team on their NHRA Winston Drag Racing Championships., but also on their record breaking performance throughout the 2000 season," said Perry Bell, Goodyear operations manager, drag racing. "Each driver raised the level of performance in his class during this extremely competitive season and we are proud that Goodyear was there, establishing new records for class and career that can only set the bar for future racers. We are very proud that Goodyear was the tire of choice for each of these champions and for every driver in the Top Fuel, Funny Car and Pro Stock Truck divisions."

* Goodyear engineers and NHRA drivers have been busy this year developing new Eagle Dragway Specials for competition; in fact, Goodyear will have three rear tires available at Pomona that were not available at the start of the season. The D1230 Eagle Dragway Special, introduced at September's Matco Tools Spring Supernationals, has quickly become a favorite of the Top Fuel division, winning at Reading, Pa. (Joe Amato), Topeka (Scelzi), Memphis (Scelzi), Houston (Cory McClenathan) and Dallas (McClenathan). Bruce Sarver also gave the D1230 a winning run in Funny Car at Reading.

"Goodyear is pleased with the performance of the new D1230 Top Fuel/Funny Car tire," Bell added. "The new D-2A compound has been formulated to provide properties that will reduce or resist the breakdown of the tread rubber composition at elevated tread rubber temperatures. This has been achieved without any loss of starting line performance. In addition to equivalent starting line performance, to the D2807 tire, the new compound appears to have the added benefit of providing more stability down track. The teams are starting to take advantage of this increased stability and are adjusting their tune-ups accordingly. The new tire has performed well in both the warm temperatures at Reading and Topeka and the extreme cold temperatures of Memphis. We expect a similar performance at Pomona this weekend."

* Winston Top Fuel champion Gary Scelzi was one of several drivers to benefit from Goodyear's development program. "The new tire Goodyear has developed is incredible," Scelzi said. "It's a tire we can run and even spin on the top end and it still performs like we need it to. Even though we encounter a lot of slippage in drag racing, this is a tire that is durable and can go rounds. It cleans up great after burnouts and the 60-foot times have been as good or better than ever with this new D1230. It's great to be associated with an industry leader like Goodyear, someone who has set the standard for tires in the motorsports industry. This new tire has helped us to win our third Winston Top Fuel title in four years because it's consistent and it goes rounds. That means it's just one less thing that Alan Johnson has to worry about when he's setting up our Team Winston dragster."

* The drive tires on any race car receive most of the attention and rightly so. The drive tires are the tires doing all of the work by transferring engine horsepower into forward momentum. But that doesn't keep Goodyear engineers from thinking about the other two corners as well. Most of the NHRA Winston Top Fuel Dragster teams have been using the Goodyear Eagle D1121 Frontrunner on their cars. This 22.0x2.5-17 tire routinely endures speeds of 320 mph and higher. However, anticipating the inevitable increase in the speeds and the loading that these tires will see in the near future, Goodyear has taken the proactive step of designing a more robust front tire package. The result is the Eagle D3417 Frontrunner tire. This 22.0x3.0-17 tire has a tread width that is one half inch wider than that of its predecessor. Initial pre-production versions of this tire were tested under race conditions by Cory McClenathan and Joe Amato with very favorable results. This new tire offers a significant increase in tire life and a slightly improved steering response. The larger tread area of the tire also allows it to better withstand the high temperatures and downforce loads associated with Top Fuel dragster quarter-mile runs. Based upon these results, Goodyear plans to make the D3417 Eagle Front Runner tire available, through licensed Goodyear race tire distributors, for the 2001 drag racing season.

* DID YOU KNOW?: That the 17-inch rear tires used on NHRA Top Fuel dragsters and Funny Cars are designed to wear out after six to eight runs, or about two miles.

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Series NHRA
Drivers Bruce Sarver , Jeg Coughlin , Bob Panella , John Force , Joe Amato , Gary Scelzi , Cory McClenathan