Brainerd: Larry Dixon preview

Defending Brainerd champ Larry Dixon hopes to drive his Miller Lite dragster to his 400TH career round of NHRA competition. BRAINERD, Mn. (Aug. 12) - Defending Brainerd Top Fuel champion and current NHRA POWERade points leader Larry Dixon will...

Defending Brainerd champ Larry Dixon hopes to drive his Miller Lite dragster to his 400TH career round of NHRA competition.

BRAINERD, Mn. (Aug. 12) - Defending Brainerd Top Fuel champion and current NHRA POWERade points leader Larry Dixon will hopefully drive his Miller Lite / Don Prudhomme Racing dragster to a new milestone at the running of the 21st annual Rugged Liner NHRA Nationals on Aug. 16-18 at the Brainerd International Raceway.

Should the 35-year old Dixon reach the quarterfinal round of eliminations, it will mark his 400th career round of competition. He enters his 163rd NHRA National event with a 259-139 win/loss round record amounting to 398 giving him a winning percentage of .651 and 23 National event Top Fuel victories to his Miller Lite team's credit since joining Snake Racing as driver in 1995.

"I'm not going to retire when I hit my 400th - that's what I'm thinking", said Dixon with a laugh. "I would be more concerned with No. 402, if it came at Brainerd. I would be way more excited about that - being able to get the finals there and hopefully win the race. That's what we're shooting for. When it's all said and done, I'll look back and be really excited about it, but right now we have bigger fish to fry."

In the land of 10,000 lakes, Dixon will have plenty of opportunities to cast his fishing line of good fortune for another Minnesota big catch. He takes a 98-point POWERade championship lead into the race and looks to repeat his sizzling performance from a year ago. At that time, he defeated Darrell Russell in the finals quickly outdistancing his rival with a time of 4.609 seconds, 316.90 mph. setting the pace with low elapsed time for the entire race weekend with his No. 1 qualifying effort of 4.594 seconds. Dixon naturally enjoys this success, but is quick to point out that his Miller Lite crew chief, Dick LaHaie is responsible for his great Brainerd confidence.

"Brainerd has now got the shortest piece of concrete for any of the races in the country that we go to," said Dixon. "Traction is tricky. I'd like to think Dick LaHaie has an advantage when we go to those types of racetracks. He has got some track savvy and there are certain places we go to that he seems to do better than others. Columbus would be one where he seems to do well. Brainerd is probably another, so I go in there with a winning attitude. We've had some really good success having won there in '99 and again last year. The people from Lake Region Beverage (Miller Lite distributor) always treat us well and I enjoy going up there."

-snake racing-

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Series NHRA
Drivers Larry Dixon , Don Prudhomme , Dick LaHaie