Atlanta: Toyota Motorsports final report

DIXON PUTS TOYOTA IN ATLANTA WINNER'S CIRCLE COMMERCE, Ga., (May 16, 2010) -- After leading every qualifying session on Friday and Saturday, Larry Dixon's domination continued on Sunday -sweeping through Sunday's eliminations on the way...

DIXON PUTS TOYOTA IN ATLANTA WINNER'S CIRCLE

COMMERCE, Ga., (May 16, 2010) -- After leading every qualifying session on Friday and Saturday, Larry Dixon's domination continued on Sunday -sweeping through Sunday's eliminations on the way to his fourth victory of the season at the NHRA Full Throttle Series' Summit Racing Equipment Southern Nationals.

The dominating weekend gave Dixon his 52nd career Top Fuel victory, tying him for second all-time with Joe Amato. It's Dixon's third victory in the last four races and gives him a commanding 112-point lead in the Top Fuel championship race.The victory marked the sixth time in eight races this season that Dixon advanced to the semi-finals or further -- and his pole on Saturday marked his eighth straight top-three qualifying effort this season.

Fellow Toyota-sponsored Top Fuel driver Morgan Lucas advanced to the second round before being eliminated. The first-round victory gave Lucas five consecutive elimination round wins at Atlanta dating back to his first-ever Top Fuel victory here a year ago.

Antron Brown was defeated in the first round after a whole-shot victory by Pat Dakin. Shawn Langdon struggled during the weekend and went out in the first round, as well.

In Funny Car competition, both Del Worsham and Cruz Pedregon were defeated in the first round after qualifying fifth and tenth, respectively.

The NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series heads to Topeka next weekend for the O'Reilly Auto Parts Summer Nationals at Heartland Park, May 21-23.

NOTES:

- Today's victory is the fourth of the season for Larry Dixon and the 52nd Top Fuel win of his career, tying him with Joe Amato for second on the all-time Top Fuel win list. Dixon has now won 14 of his last 15 elimination rounds.

- Today's win is the fourth for Larry Dixon at the Atlanta Dragway.

- Larry Dixon's victory marked his sixth semi-final or better appearance in eight races this season and his fourth in a row. He continues to lead the Top Fuel title chase by 112 points.

- Larry Dixon posted the fastest time in all four qualifying sessions this weekend, securing all 12 NHRA bonus points for qualifying. It was just the second time the feat's been accomplished since NHRA implemented the bonus points last September with Dixon also sweeping all four sessions at Memphis last season.

Larry Dixon, Al-Anabi Racing Toyota Top Fuel Dragster: "Our Al-Anabi Racing Toyota dragster was just a great car this weekend in every run. It did everything we wanted. We drove well and the car ran flawlessly.

(On his consistency) It really goes back to Brainerd or Reading last summer. At that point, we really came together and our qualifying was consistently good and we were contenders every race. Even though we didn't end up winning the championship at the end of the year, we were already really excited to get back on the track for this season. Now it feels like we've just picked up where we left off last season. This car been really good since last summer."

Morgan Lucas, GEICO Powersports/Lucas Oil Toyota Top Fuel Dragster: "We were strong in the first 300 feet and able to run stay with a Larry Dixon and (Doug) Kalitta up to that point, but we missed a little bit in the middle of the race track. As far as the heat, I think it was actually a little easier to adjust this year for us (track temperatures increased by approximately 25 degrees in the hour prior to the first-round to the conclusion of his second-round run). Right now, we're making some small improvements and we're headed in the right direction and we're not that far off. Our goal is to put it all together later in the year and contend for the championship."

Shawn Langdon, Lucas Oil/Speedco Toyota Top Fuel Dragster: "We fell behind a little in qualifying and never really caught up. Our pass today was pretty good (in losing to Cory McClenathan), but our qualifying position put us in a tough spot to come through the field."

-source: toyota motorsports

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Series NHRA
Drivers Antron Brown , Larry Dixon , Del Worsham , Joe Amato , Cruz Pedregon , Cory McClenathan , Morgan Lucas , Shawn Langdon , Pat Dakin