Dallas Rick Santos Preview

RICK SANTOS HOPES FOR A REPEAT PERFORMANCE AT DALLAS IN THE OAKWOOD HOMES DRAGSTER SUN VALLEY, Calif. --- Rick Santos, driver of the Oakwood Homes Federal-Mogul Dragster in the NHRA Federal-Mogul Drag Racing Series, hopes to keep his win streak...

RICK SANTOS HOPES FOR A REPEAT PERFORMANCE AT DALLAS IN THE OAKWOOD HOMES DRAGSTER

SUN VALLEY, Calif. --- Rick Santos, driver of the Oakwood Homes Federal-Mogul Dragster in the NHRA Federal-Mogul Drag Racing Series, hopes to keep his win streak at Dallas alive when the NHRA returns on October 21-24. Santos is two for two in national event wins at Dallas over the last two seasons. He won the Spring event in 1997 in his first full season with Jack O'Bannon Racing and is the defending winner of the O'Reilly Fallnationals. His only other start at the Texas Motorplex resulted in a runner-up finish in 1994. The 1998 O'Reilly Fallnationals was also the race where Santos clinched the 1998 National championship. "If Darrell Russell made it to the final round, we wouldn't have clinched the championship," said Santos. "But he lost in the semi-finals and we went on to win the event and the championship. It was quite a celebration, especially since Dallas is such a big market for Oakwood Homes." Santos has already earned the honor of champion this year. He was named three-time world champion on September 18, 1999 when Shawn Bowen lost in the first round at the Keystone Nationals in Reading, Pa. Bowen was the only driver capable of catching Santos in his quest for his third national title. "It would have been nice to wrap up the championship in Indy when everyone was together, especially since we won the race," said Santos. "But it is nice to have the championship out of the way. We can just go out and have fun without the added pressure. We probably won't experiment with the car that much. We want to go out and win just like everyone else." At this race last year on his way to his ninth win of the season, Santos qualified seventh, his worst of the season. He went on to defeat John Costanza, Bill Hynes and Darren Nicholson before meeting Rick Henkelmen in the final. Santos defeated Henkelmen in the final when Henkelmen immediately smoked the tires. Santos had an ET of 5.618 and speed of 242.78 m.p.h. Santos' luck at the Texas Motorplex is not the only reason he looks forward to a return to the facility. "Dallas is really a great track," continued Santos. "It is a fast track that has a real nice concrete surface. It allows us to have real good traction, especially when the track gets hot. It is just a nice place to go. The facility is kept up and the fans are great. Plus anytime you are going somewhere you have won back to back, it makes it a place you like. We hope to continue our win streak there."

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Series NHRA
Drivers Rick Santos , Bill Hynes