Schumacher made history in the most prestigious NHRA drag race at Indy

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Tony Schumacher made history in the most prestigious NHRA drag race Sunday when he drove his U.S. Army ROTC dragster to his ninth Top Fuel Dragster title in the U.S. Nationals.

Schumacher defeated Don Schumacher Racing teammate Spencer Massey's Prestone/FRAM team in the championship round to break a tie with drag racing legend "Big Daddy" Don Garlits with eight titles at Lucas Oil Raceway near Indianapolis in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series.

The canopy in action on Tony Schumacher's Top Fuel
The canopy in action on Tony Schumacher's Top Fuel

Photo by: Don Schumacher Racing

Also in Top Fuel, DSR's Antron Brown driving for Matco Tools lost to Massey in the semifinals but was able to clinch the top-seed for the start of the six-event NHRA Countdown to the Championship that begins next weekend at zMAX Dragway at Charlotte Motor Speedway at Concord, N.C.

In Funny Car, Ron Capps clinched the No. 1 spot heading to the Countdown in his NAPA Shocks Dodge Charger R/T but lost to DSR teammate Matt Hagan in the first round. Although Hagan advanced to the semifinals, his Mopar/Aaron's Dream Machine team fell seven points short of advancing to the Countdown where he would have had a chance to defend his NHRA Funny Car world championship.

(See below for details on the Countdown.)

The following are DSR results from the U.S. Nationals and other notes:

Top Fuel
Winner: Tony Schumacher (DSR)
No. 1 qualifier: Shawn Langdon (Al-Anabi Racing), 3.740 sec., 326.48 mph.

Tony Schumacher, U.S. Army ROTC dragster
Qualified: No. 4
Sunday Eliminations
1st round: Schumacher (3.817 sec., 319.90 mph) def. Hillary Will (3.874, 309.91)
2nd round: Schumacher (3.818, 321.73) def. Morgan Lucas (4.400, 196.82)
Semifinals: Schumacher (3.808, 319.52-holeshot) def. Shawn Langdon (3.801, 317.87)
Final: Schumacher (3.806, 315.34) def. Spencer Massey (3.828, 319.37)

Friday (Aug. 31) Qualifying
Session 1: 3.814 sec., 324.67 mph
Saturday (Sept. 1) Qualifying
Session 2: 3.805, 324.67 (first-round loss in Shootout)
Session 3: 3.772, 326.79 (track speed record)
Saturday (Sept. 8) Qualifying
Session 4: 4.080, 219.04
Session 5: 5.155, 132.92

Spencer Massey, Prestone/FRAM dragster
Qualified: No. 2

Sunday Eliminations
1st round: Massey (3.811 sec., 322.88 mph) def. Clay Millican (3.881, 312.13)
2nd round: Massey (3.802, 323.58) def. Khalid alBalooshi (3.816, 319.98)
Semifinals: Massey (3.807, 315.64) def. Antron Brown (3.829, 313.07)
Final: Tony Schumacher (3.806, 315.34) def. Massey (3.828, 319.37)
Friday (Aug. 31) Qualifying
Session 1: 5.984 sec., 103.69 mph
Saturday (Sept. 1) Qualifying
Session 2: 3.815, 323.74 (Traxxas Shootout first-round win)
Session 3: 3.762 sec., 324.51 mph (Shootout semifinals win; track elapsed-time record)
Shootout final: 3.780, 325.61 (does not count toward qualifying)
Saturday (Sept. 8) Qualifying
Session 4: 3.825, 317.42
Session 5: 3.927, 247.34

Antron Brown, Matco Tools dragster
Qualified: No. 3
Sunday Eliminations
1st round: Brown (3.797 sec., 324.20 mph) def. T.J. Zizzo (3.948, 294.56)
2nd round: Brown (3.802, 319.90) def. J.R. Todd (8.803, 84.02)
Semifinals: Spencer Massey (3.807, 315.64) def. Brown (3.829, 313.07)

Friday (Aug. 31) Qualifying
Session 1: 3.844 sec., 319.37 mph
Saturday (Sept. 1) Qualifying
Session 2: 3.851, 317.42 (first-round loss in Shootout)
Session 3: 3.807, 322.34
Saturday (Sept. 8) Qualifying
Session 4: 4.85, 153.28
Session 5: 3.762, 322.50

Funny Car
Winner: Mike Neff, John Force Racing

Johnny Gray, NTB/Big O Tires/Service Central Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 9
Sunday Eliminations
1st round: Gray (4.591 sec., 199.58 mph) def. John Force (no time)
2nd round: Gray (4.128, 306.26) def. Courtney Force (4.611, 183.92)
Semifinals: Tim Wilkerson (4.145, 295.53) def. GRAY (4.235, 288.21)
Friday (Aug. 31) Qualifying
Session 1: Johnny Gray, 4.079 sec., 310.98 mph
Saturday (Sept. 1) Qualifying
Session 2: 6.107, 108.78
Session 3: 5.758, 119.51
Saturday (Sept. 8) Qualifying
Session 4: 4.286, 247.07
Session 5: 4.080, 317.19

Matt Hagan, Mopar/Aaron's Dream Machine Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 14
Sunday Eliminations
1st round: Hagan (4.101, 307.04) def. Ron Capps (5.699, 156.34)
2nd round: Hagan (4.127, 304.25) def. Robert Hight (4.137, 301.87)
Semifinals: Mike Neff (4.131, 310. 63) def. Hagan (9.428, 73.95)
Friday (Aug. 31) Qualifying
Session 1: 4.225 sec., 294.95 mph
Saturday (Sept. 1) Qualifying
Session 2: 4.119, 307.65
Session 3: 6.145/106.56
Saturday (Sept. 8) Qualifying
Session 4: 6.008, 114.70
Session 5: 8.063, 81.02

Jack Beckman, Valvoline NextGen Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 2
Sunday Eliminations
1st round: Todd Lesenko (5.243 sec., 126.34 mph) def. Beckman (5.822, 123.56)
Friday (Aug. 31) Qualifying
Session 1: 4.051 sec., 302.62 mph
Saturday (Sept. 1) Qualifying
Session 2: 4.056, 310.70
Session 3: 5.799, 117.56
Saturday (Sept. 8) Qualifying
Session 4: 8.116, 73.73
Session 5: 4.063, 310.55

Ron Capps, NAPA Shocks Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 3
Sunday Eliminations 1st round: Capps (5.699 sec., 156.34 mph) def. Matt Hagan (4.101, 307.04)

Friday (Aug. 31) Qualifying
Session 1: 4.122 sec., 308.00 mph
Saturday (Sept. 1) Qualifying
Session 2: 8.031, 87.65
Session 3: 4.064, 312.13
Saturday (Sept. 8) Qualifying
Session 4: 4.136, 282.95
Session 5: 4.053, 313.80

Countdown to the championship

The fields are set for each of the four Full Throttle professional categories heading to the six-event Countdown to the Championship.

The points will be reset at 10-point increments for the Countdown contestants and the points leaders after Indy, which was the 17th event of the year, getting 20-point bonus so they will start the Countdown with 30-point leads in Top Fuel (Antron Brown), Funny Car (Ron Capps), Pro Stock (Allen Johnson) and Pro Stock Motorcycle (Eddie Krawiec).

Only the top-10 drivers can contend for season championships but all drivers entered in the last six events will contend with Countdown drivers for event points and titles. The best season finish for non-Countdown driver can be 11th.

Six in a roll
Postponing the U.S. Nationals by one week means the Full Throttle series will now race on five consecutive weekends beginning next weekend with the first race in the Countdown at zMAX Dragway at Charlotte Motor Speedway at Concord, N.C. Factoring in last week's rainout it actually means teams will have competed six straight weekends.

NHRA full throttle drag racing series standings
(unofficial through Sept. 9, 2012, U.S. Nationals; DSR in CAPS)

Top Fuel Dragster
1. Antron Brown, 1,413
2. Spencer Massey, 1,378
3. Tony Schumacher, 1,321
4. Steve Torrence, 1,171
5. Doug Kalitta, 1,105
6. Morgan Lucas, 1,002
7. Shawn Langdon, 956
8. Brandon Bernstein, 849
9. David Grubnic, 841
10. Bob Vandergriff, 696

Funny Car
1. Ron Capps, 1,268
2. Robert Hight, 1,230
3. Jack Beckman, 1,113
4. Mike Neff, 1,100
5. Johnny Gray, 1,073
6. Courtney Force, 948
7. Cruz Pedregon, 893
8. John Force, 875
9. Jeff Arend, 838
10. Tim Wilkerson, 829
11. Matt Hagan 822

Countdown to the championship
(Points reset for 6-event Countdown; DSR in CAPS)

Top Fuel
1. Antron Brown, 2,110 (includes 20-Point Bonus For Leading Regular Season Stadings)
2. Spencer Massey, 2,080
3. Tony Schumacher, 2,070
4. Steve Torrence, 2,060
5. Doug Kalitta, 2,050
6. Morgan Lucas, 2,040
7. Shawn Langdon, 2,030
8. Brandon Bernstein, 2,020
9. David Grubnic, 2,010
10. Bob Vandergriff, 2,000

Funny Car
1. Ron Capps, 2,110 (includes 20-Point Bonus For Leading Regular Season Standings)
2. Robert Hight, 2,080
3. Jack Beckman, 2,070
4. Mike Neff, 2,060
5. Johnny Gray, 2,050
6. Courtney Force, 2,040
7. Cruz Pedregon, 2,030
8. John Force, 2,020
9. Jeff Arend, 2,010
10. Tim Wilkerson, 2,000

Next event: Sept. 14-16, zMAX Dragway at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Concord, N.C.

Source: Don Schumacher Racing

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Series NHRA
Article type Race report
Tags brown, capps, gray, hogan, indianapolis, massey, nhra, schumacher