Topeka: Tony Schumacher Racing Saturday notes

SCHUMACHER TO START SEVENTH TOPEKA, Kan., May 31 - Handling the controls of his U.S. Army Top Fuel dragster, Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher pocketed the seventh starting position here Saturday during final qualifying for Sunday's O'Reilly Summer ...

SCHUMACHER TO START SEVENTH

TOPEKA, Kan., May 31 - Handling the controls of his U.S. Army Top Fuel dragster, Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher pocketed the seventh starting position here Saturday during final qualifying for Sunday's O'Reilly Summer Nationals at Heartland Park.

Entering the day in the bottom half of the field (in ninth), Schumacher recorded a couple of solid runs and thus moved up two spots into the top half of the order. "It was pretty hot today, so we just needed to make sure we got a good race day set up under us," said the Chicago-area resident. "I'd say it was mission accomplished for the U.S. Army team."

Schumacher put up the second quickest pass in the third qualifying session before nailing the quickest quarter-mile trip in qualifying session number four. "It was a challenging track to get down given the sun and temperature," he added. "The weather should be about the same on Sunday, so we're as prepared as we're going to get."

For the second straight race, Schumacher will take on 10th-place qualifier, Alan Bradshaw, in the opening round of eliminations beginning at 11 a.m. CT.

At Bristol (Tenn.) Dragway two weeks ago, Schumacher slid by Bradshaw in round one after the latter fouled out. Schumacher parlayed that round win into a race victory.

"Alan's been getting down the track with regularity, so we better be ready for another fight," said the five-time world champion. "As always, focus will be critical if we're going to claim another event win."

Schumacher, who came into the weekend holding a 131-point lead over Antron Brown in the Top Fuel standings, is seeking his first career victory at Heartland Park. "I would be so pumped up if we could finally win here in Topeka," he said.

-credit: dsr

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Series NHRA
Drivers Tony Schumacher