Al-Anabi Racing Team Set For Englishtown

Al-Anabi Racing Team Set For Englishtown

Old Bridge Township Raceway Park

Del Worsham enters the NHRA SuperNationals in first place in the NHRA Full Throttle Top Fuel point standings; he leads second-place Tony Schumacher, by 79 points. With his 613-point total, Worsham is the only NHRA Full Throttle Series driver with more than 600-points this season.

Worsham has advanced to at least the semifinals in five of the seven races this season. In those seven races, Worsham has three wins and two semifinal appearances making him 16-4 in eliminations this year. He won races at Gainesville, Fla., Charlotte and Baytown, Texas.

One year ago at Englishtown, Worsham was the No. 9 qualifier; he defeated Cruz Pedregon, Robert Hight and Jack Beckman before losing to Bob Tasca in the final round of Funny Car eliminations. Worsham won Funny Car races at Englishtown in 1991 and 2005.

... every round is important.

Del Worsham

One race ago in Topeka, Kan., Worsham was the No. 2 qualifier; in eliminations, he defeated Steve Chrisman before losing to Bob Vandergriff in the second round.

When Worsham won his final-round matchup with teammate Larry Dixon in Baytown, Texas May 1, he collected his 400th career round win. He is one of just 17 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series drivers with at least 400-career round wins.

Worsham is one of only five drivers in NHRA history to lead the point standings in both Top Fuel and Funny Car. The others are Kenny Bernstein, Don Prudhomme, Ed “The Ace” McCulloch and Gary Scelzi.

Worsham prior to Englishtown: “We haven’t had the finishes we’ve wanted in the last two races, but we’re not concerned at all. Early in the season, I said a lot of our success was due to us having great runs at the right times. Now, our timing isn’t as good as it was then, but the Al-Anabi car is still making great runs, and it’s just a matter of time before we win another race.

“I’ve said for quite a while that I feel lucky to be leading the points and that the Al-Anabi team is off to a great start. Now we’re a third of the way through the year, and we’re into the regular flow of the season. We’re racing three of the next four weekends so this weekend’s race in Englishtown starts an important part of the NHRA season. After this stretch of races, we’ll only have five races left before the Countdown begins so the playoffs will be here before we know, and every round is important.

“I still feel really lucky to be leading the points. The competition it Top Fuel is unbelievably tough. The top five in points are really tight, and I know it’ll be a battle for the Full Throttle championship all the way to the finals at Pomona. This will be a great championship race that the fans will love watching.”

***

2010 NHRA Full Throttle Top Fuel champion Larry Dixon enters the NHRA SuperNationals in third place in the NHRA Full Throttle Top Fuel point standings. He trails second-place Tony Schumacher by four points and leads fourth-place Spencer Massey by four points.

Dixon has won more races at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park than any other active Full Throttle Series driver. Dixon and Joe Amato each have six Top Fuel wins at Englishtown while Don Prudhomme won six Funny Car races at the suburban New Jersey track. Dixon won races at Englishtown in 1995, 2004, ’05, ’07, ’09 and ’10; he was the runner up there in 1996, 2002, ’03 and ‘06.

Dixon is the two-time defending champion of the NHRA SuperNationals. One year ago, he was the No. 3 qualifier; he defeated Steve Chrisman, Tony Schumacher, Brandon Bernstein and Antron Brown on his way to the winner’s circle; the race concluded on Monday due to late-afternoon showers on Sunday.

Reigning Top Fuel Champion Larry Dixon
Reigning Top Fuel Champion Larry Dixon

Photo by: Ted Rossino

Dixon has qualified in the top four at all seven races this season; his average qualifying position is 2.86. He has been the No. 1 qualifier twice this season and 50 times in his career placing him ninth on the NHRA’s all-time No. 1 qualifier list for all classes. He trails eighth-place Don Prudhomme by two No. 1s; John Force and Warren Johnson head the list with 138.

Dixon has advanced to at least the semifinals at three of the seven races this season including the final round of eliminations at two of the last four races. One race ago in Topeka, Kan., Dixon was the No. 3 qualifier; he defeated Terry Sainty before losing to Doug Kalitta in the second round of eliminations.

Dixon earned six bonus points in qualifying at Heartland Park Topeka giving him a season total of 37, more than any other Top Fuel driver. Last year, the Al-Anabi driver earned 130 qualifying bonus points, more than any other Top Fuel driver and 43 more than the next-highest competitor.

When Dixon raced Tony Schumacher in the second round at Atlanta Dragway on May 15, it was the 73rd meeting between the two Top Fuel titans. Schumacher now leads the career series 37-36. The Atlanta Dragway meeting was the fourth between the two drivers this season with the season series now tied at 2-2. The drivers have 18 career final-round meetings with Schumacher holding a 12-6 lead.

Dixon is still looking for his first win of the 2011 season; he won 12 races last year, more than any other year in his career. He is the first professional driver in NHRA history to win 12 races in 12 final rounds in a season. His 12-win total was also more than any other driver in the four NHRA Full Throttle classes this year. His 12 wins happened at Pomona, Calif., Baytown, Texas, Las Vegas, Atlanta, Joliet, Ill., Englishtown, N.J., Norwalk, Ohio, Sonoma, Calif., Brainerd, Minn., Indianapolis, Charlotte and Reading, Pa.

Dixon prior to Englishtown: “I don’t know why I have the record I do at Englishtown, but I definitely like racing there. You’d have to think the cars and setups I’ve run over the years are conducive to running well there. It’s one of the tracks where my Dad raced so I always enjoy racing there, and I always get some good feelings when I go to a track that’s been on our circuit for a long time. It’s one of the tracks that helped form our sport. It’s no different than a Fenway Park or a Wrigley field, and it’s one of the tracks I grew up wanting to race.

“Points wise and money wise, all the races pay the same, but there are definitely races on the tour that mean more than others. For me, the ones I consider the majors, Pomona, Gainesville, Indy and obviously Englishtown, when I was a kid reading about Don Garlits or Shirley Muldowney, they were racing at these tracks. They weren’t racing at Charlotte or Las Vegas. So these races just mean more to me.

“Would our team like a win by this point of the year? Yes, we would, but with that being said, I race on the Al-Anabi team, and our team has won three of the seven races this year, So our Al-Anabi team has what it takes to win races, we just haven’t gotten it done yet. We know it’s just a matter of time, and we hope Englishtown is our time.”

-source: al-anabi racing team

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Shirley Muldowney , Antron Brown , Larry Dixon , Kenny Bernstein , Warren Johnson , Del Worsham , John Force , Tony Schumacher , Joe Amato , Gary Scelzi , Doug Kalitta , Cruz Pedregon , Don Garlits , Don Prudhomme , Jack Beckman , Brandon Bernstein , Bob Vandergriff , Robert Hight , Steve Chrisman , Spencer Massey , Terry Sainty
Tags del worsham, larry dixon, supernationals, top fuel