Event winners: TOP FUEL -- Larry Dixon FUNNY CAR -- Tony Pedregon, PRO STOCK -- Warren Johnson PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE -- Geno Scali TOP ALCOHOL DRAGSTER -- Marty Thacker TOP ALCOHOL FUNNY CAR -- Frank Manzo, COMPETITION -- David Rampy SUPER STOCK --...
TOP FUEL -- Larry Dixon
FUNNY CAR -- Tony Pedregon,
PRO STOCK -- Warren Johnson
PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE -- Geno Scali TOP
ALCOHOL DRAGSTER -- Marty Thacker
TOP ALCOHOL FUNNY CAR -- Frank Manzo,
COMPETITION -- David Rampy
SUPER STOCK -- Lincoln Morehead
STOCK -- Thomas Rhoda
SUPER COMP -- Todd Ewing
SUPER GAS -- Corky Markwart,
SUPER STREET -- Quentin Holloway.
Tony Pedregon became the season's first four-time winner, beating Johnny Gray in the final round of the 23rd annual Summit Racing Equipment Southern Nationals at Atlanta Dragway.
In winning for just the second time at the track on which he won his first career event in 1996, Pedregon moved into a 108-point lead over Whit Bazemore.
The 38-year-old veteran earned his 23rd career victory, breaking a tie with his older brother, Cruz, for fourth place on the all-time list behind boss and teammate John Force, Kenny Bernstein and Don "the Snake" Prudhomme.
Pedregon's Castrol SYNTEC Ford started from the No. 2 qualifying spot, the only car other than Force's Castrol GTX Mustang, to break the 4.80 barrier. He beat Dale Creasy Jr., Ron Capps and Bazemore to reach the final round for the 44th time, all with Team Castrol.
Force qualified No. 1 for the first time this year and for the 113th time in his career with a track record time of 4.768 seconds. The 12-time champion and 106-time tour winner also posted the quickest time during eliminations of 4.827 seconds.
TEAM CASTROL Details
JOHN FORCE, Castrol GTX Ford Mustang Funny Car Qualifying position and performance: No. 1 at 4.768 seconds, 320.13 mph. Race results: Beat Bob Gilbertson, Del Worsham; lost to Johnny Gray. Notable: Went to the semifinals for the first time this season. Quotable: "We didn't win, but we made some progress. I was excited that I was in the hunt because I could do some damage to help Tony." -- John Force.
TONY PEDREGON, Castrol SYNTEC Ford Mustang Funny Car Qualifying position and performance: No. 2 at 4.799 seconds, 320.58 mph. Race results: Beat Dale Creasy Jr., Ron Capps, Whit Bazemore and Johnny Gray. Notable: Became season's first four-time winner and extended his lead in points. Quotable: "It's great to be able to give John a race win for his birthday. I can't say enough about my Crew Chiefs, John Medlen and Dickie Venables. They give me a car to win with every week." -- TONY PEDREGON.
GARY DENSHAM, Team Castrol/Auto Club of Southern California Ford Funny Car: Qualifying position and performance: No. 5 at 4.856 seconds, 317.27 mph. Race results: Beat Dean Skuza; lost to Johnny Gray. Notable: Retained fourth place in points. Quotable: "We did okay. We got behind early and never caught up and then the heat bit us. But we'll be back." -- GARY DENSHAM.