Dallas: Matt Hagan preview

HAGAN HEADS TO TEXAS ON A HIGH CHRISTIANSBURG, Va. (Sept. 24, 2009) - After re-establishing himself in Concord, N.C., on Sunday as a serious contender for the 2009 Automobile Club of Southern California Road to the Future Award as an ...

HAGAN HEADS TO TEXAS ON A HIGH

CHRISTIANSBURG, Va. (Sept. 24, 2009) - After re-establishing himself in Concord, N.C., on Sunday as a serious contender for the 2009 Automobile Club of Southern California Road to the Future Award as an NHRA rookie-of-the-year frontrunner, Matt Hagan is flying high as he heads to this weekend's NHRA Fall Nationals in Ennis, Texas, at the Texas Motorplex.

Hagan, who put together a string of solid, quick passes in Concord to reach the final round before ceding the win to Robert Hight, has been helping birth "cow babies" on the family's 500-acre farm in Virginia this week but is still awaiting the arrival of his second child, daughter Penny Louise. His wife Rachel is due at any moment.

This weekend, Hagan will pilot the FRAM Tough Guard/shelor.com Funny Car, in Don Schumacher Racing's continuing effort to highlight different team sponsors during the season.

"We have a good race car now," said Hagan, who did not make the Countdown to 1 playoffs and stands in 12th place. "We've been struggling for the last 12 races, so I was just as surprised as anybody to have that race car come together like that in Concord.

"We had a bit of a tough time during qualifying and on race day the car really stepped up and we had a consistent race car. Hopefully it will carry over to Dallas this weekend.

"All we did after the race in Concord was roll it up into the hauler. When we get to Dallas we will unload it and hopefully have the same car. There are a lot of variables, though, such as a different race track, conditions and temperatures. I'm looking forward to another exciting event."

As for his potential role as a spoiler during the playoffs, "I just want to win races," he said. "I've never been one to rain on somebody's parade. Basically, I want to go out there and do the best that I can and make sure that we try to win some races for the FRAM Tough Guard/shelor.com team.

"We have some goals left to fulfill. One is to qualify at every race and the next is to get a Wally (event winner's trophy named after NHRA founder Wally Parks) before the year is up. Obviously, I want to be a spear carrier for my teammates to do everything we can to make sure one of them (Ron Capps, Jack Beckman) wins a championship. But, also, I want to do well for myself."

-credit: dsr

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Series NHRA
Drivers Ron Capps , Jack Beckman , Don Schumacher , Robert Hight , Matt Hagan