Post Race Notes: 19th ANNUAL O'REILLY NHRA FALL NATIONALS SEPT. 23-26, 2004, TEXAS MOTORPLEX, ENNIS, TEXAS TOP FUEL *Tony Schumacher, from Long Grove, Ill., collected the 19th victory of his career and eighth of the season by defeating ...
Post Race Notes:
19th ANNUAL O'REILLY NHRA FALL NATIONALS
SEPT. 23-26, 2004, TEXAS MOTORPLEX, ENNIS, TEXAS
*Tony Schumacher, from Long Grove, Ill., collected the 19th victory of his career and eighth of the season by defeating Australian David Grubnic in the final round. Schumacher raced to victory in his U.S. Army dragster, posting a 4.575-second time at 325.85 mph, topping Grubnic's 4.623 at 323.97 in the Red Line Oil dragster. It was his second Texas Motorplex victory (also 1999).
*Schumacher, the 1999 NHRA Top Fuel world champion, is the current points leader in his category. Schumacher has a 217-point lead over Doug Kalitta with four races remaining on the NHRA POWERade schedule.
*Kalitta, from Ann Arbor, Mich., was the No. 1 qualifier for the event, the 21st of his career and fifth of the season. He drove his Mac Tools dragster to the top of the 16-car order with a run of 4.536 at 320.36.
*Grubnic has yet to post a national event win. He has been a runner-up five times this season and seven times in his career.
*Brandon Bernstein clocked the fastest run of the event, a 327.59 blast in his Budweiser/Lucas Oil dragster.
*Del Worsham, from Chino Hills, Calif., defeated Cruz Pedregon in the final round for his 18th career victory and fourth this season. Worsham powered his Checker Schuck's Kragen Chevy Monte Carlo to a run of 4.934 at 315.56 to earn the victory over Pedregon's Advance Auto Parts Chevy Monte Carlo, which clocked a performance of 4.948 at 307.02. It was his second Texas Motorplex victory (also 2002).
*Worsham is a perfect 4-0 in final round appearances this season.
*John Force, from Yorba Linda, Calif., was the No.1 qualifier -- the 122nd of his career and fifth of the season. Force motored his Castrol GTX Start Up Ford Mustang to a performance of 4.784 at 324.20.
*Bazemore - the points leader following three events this season - lost to Worsham in the second round and slipped into the No. 4 spot (from third) in the POWERade standings.
*Points leader Force lost to Worsham in the semifinal round. Force has a 228-point lead over second place Gary Scelzi in the standings and is looking to close in on his 13th NHRA POWERade Funny Car world championship. Force was never higher than third place in 2003.
*Greg Anderson from Charlotte, N.C., didn't win the O'Reilly Fall Nationals, but he did clinch his second consecutive NHRA POWERade Pro Stock world championship. Second-place driver Jason Line lost in the first round, which mathematically eliminated Line from the championship chase. Anderson lost to Kurt Johnson in the first round, but the championship was clinched due to Line's loss.
*David Connolly paced the field on eliminations day, winning the Pro Stock title for the second time in his career. Connolly used a 6.810 pass at 203.74 in his Bullet Motorsports Chevy Cavalier, defeating Arlington, Texas resident Bruce Allen in the Reher-Morrison Pontiac Grand Am, who managed a 6.891 at 202.79 for his first runner-up finish this season.
*Jeg Coughlin was the No. 1 qualifier for the first time this season and eighth time of his career. He turned in a 6.774 at 204.35 - good enough to set both ends of the track record.
*Allen earned a $1,000 bonus by winning the Motel 6 'Who Got the Light' award when he defeated Rickie Smith by 0.0015 of-a-second margin of victory in the semifinal round of Pro Stock eliminations.
*Notable DNQs: V. Gaines, Jim Yates and Mark Pawuk.