BECKMAN BUMPED OUT IN TOPEKA OPENING ROUND TOPEKA, Kan. (May 23, 2010) - Despite his first-round loss at the 22nd annual NHRA Summer Nationals at Heartland Park Topeka, Jack Beckman is buoyed by the improvement in performance of the...
BECKMAN BUMPED OUT IN TOPEKA OPENING ROUND
TOPEKA, Kan. (May 23, 2010) - Despite his first-round loss at the 22nd annual NHRA Summer Nationals at Heartland Park Topeka, Jack Beckman is buoyed by the improvement in performance of the Valvoline/Mail Terminal Services Dodge Charger Funny Car he drives for Don Schumacher Racing in the 2010 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series.
Beckman qualified No. 4 for the event with a 4.113/306.26, while his first-round opponent Bob Tasca III posted a 4.256/294.05 to qualify No. 13. When the day dawned surprisingly under cooler 70-degree conditions with cloud cover, Tasca improved in the opening stanza to beat Beckman with a 4.150/305.22, while Beckman's ride slowed to a losing 4.173/302.01.
"You always try to put the best face on your performances," said Beckman, who leaves here fifth in the class point standings. "And in this sport there is only one person at the end of the day who wins and 15 lose, but first-round losses are very tough.
"For a team as well-funded and represented by sponsors as we are, we shouldn't get beat first round. We had the better car in qualifying, Tasca did a great job of stepping up against us. Our car didn't respond to the changes that we put in.
"If there is a silver lining to this, it's nine runs in a row on our new tune-up where the car’s gone down the race track. We're switching chassis going into Chicago, which sometimes could be a cause for concern. But, we're so consistent with the tune-up right now we think that will shorten up the learning curve for us. We'll know in Chicago and Englishtown if we're behind or we're right where we need to be on the tune-up.
"It seems that we've got our consistency back; we have to start stepping the car up. We need a couple of hundredths of a second in the next two races.
"In this sport, any time there's nitro in the tank, nothing is for granted. You saw a lot of the favorites go out in the first round (Ashley Force Hood, Matt Hagan, Tim Wilkerson and Tony Pedregon). We just need to get another win soon. We need to get all of us pulling on the same side of the rope here and we need to get those attitudes back in the winner's circle.
"(Crew chiefs) Rahn Tobler and John Collins are looking at the data, and these guys are so smart. They're going to go back to the DSR shop in Brownsburg, Ind. Tuesday is the crew chiefs meeting, and everybody's got input, everybody's got access to everybody else's data. Those guys are brilliant. They're going to pick away at this thing and they're going to have us back in the winner's circle real soon.”
Next up is the 13th annual United Association Route 66 NHRA Nationals in Joliet, Ill., June 4-6.