LARRY DIXON & MILLER LITE DRAGSTER NOW ONLY 78 POINTS OUT AFTER SECOND ROUND FINISH AT COLONEL'S TRUCK NATIONALS MILLER LITE PILOT KNOCKS OUT POINTS LEADER GARY SCELZI IN FIRST ROUND BRAINERD, MN (Aug. 20) - Larry Dixon and the Don ...
LARRY DIXON & MILLER LITE DRAGSTER NOW ONLY 78 POINTS OUT AFTER SECOND ROUND FINISH AT COLONEL'S TRUCK NATIONALS
MILLER LITE PILOT KNOCKS OUT POINTS LEADER GARY SCELZI IN FIRST ROUND
BRAINERD, MN (Aug. 20) - Larry Dixon and the Don Prudhomme-owned Miller Lite Dragster moved to within 78 points of the Winston top fuel points lead after defeating points leader Gary Scelzi en route to a second round finish at the 31st Annual Colonel's Truck Accessories Nationals.
In a battle between the top two point earners in the NHRA's top fuel category, Dixon posted his best reaction time of the season (.457) before turning in a lap of 4.685 seconds at 311.53 mph to defeat Scelzi (4.711 seconds at 312.06 mph) for the first time in five total meetings this season. "That was the biggest round I have been in all year," said Dixon. "If we are going to make a run in the points, we gotta have (Gary) Scelzi go out early as many times as possible. That round was a 40-point swing, so for us to take him out was a big help in the points."
No. 10 seeded Dixon's heroic opening-round win resulted in a second round meeting with No. 2 Seed Doug Kalitta in what would be a re-match of the top fuel final just two weeks ago at the Fram Autolite Nationals in Sonoma, CA. Unfortunately for the Miller Lite Team it would be the MGM Grand Team that would prevail for the second race in a row as Kalitta's lap of 4.643 seconds nipped Dixon's pass of 4.642 seconds at 314.75 mph in a race decided at the start.
"I am really disappointed in myself," admitted Dixon. "I had my best light of the year (.457) against Scelzi and I come back in the next round with my worst (.540). It takes so much concentration up there that the only people who can understand it are the ones who have done it before. I am really pissed off at myself that I let that one get away."
With the finish, Dixon (1,140) now sits in third place in the top fuel point standings, just 78 points behind first place Scelzi (1,213) and 54 points out of second place Tony Schumacher (1,194) heading into the U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis (Aug. 30-Sept. 4). "It is really hard to say how we will do at the next race," said Dixon. "Just because we had a good car here doesn't mean we will have a good car in Indy."
"The tracks are so different. Here it has been really cool and in Indy it is really hot and humid, believe me, I live there so I know." "We are just going to have to go there and see what the weather conditions are like and make our moves. I am confident that Dick LaHaie will look at the conditions and that we will we have a good car."