TONY PEDREGON WINS IN DALLAS; UMPS TO THE TOP SPOT IN THE COUNTDOWN TO THE CHAMPIONSHIP INDIANAPOLIS (Sept. 24, 2007) -- Tony Pedregon won for the third time this season at the O'Reilly NHRA Fall Nationals at the Texas Motorplex this ...
TONY PEDREGON WINS IN DALLAS;
UMPS TO THE TOP SPOT IN THE COUNTDOWN TO THE CHAMPIONSHIP
INDIANAPOLIS (Sept. 24, 2007) -- Tony Pedregon won for the third time this season at the O'Reilly NHRA Fall Nationals at the Texas Motorplex this weekend.With this win, he jumps to first place in the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, Countdown to the Championship as the series nears the end of the Countdown to Four.Only the top four drivers in Funny Car will advance to the round that will determine the NHRA POWERade Champion, the Countdown to One.
Pedregon advanced to the final round only to face his brother and teammate, Cruz Pedregon who made his way to the finals from the opposite side of the ladder. This race marks the first time that Tony and Cruz would face each other in the finals as teammates.They were paired against each other in Finals in Houston in 1997.
"It was a good weekend for the Q Horsepower team," said Pedregon, the 2003 NHRA Nitro Funny Car World Champion.b^0x001cWith pressure on us going into the last two races outside the top four in the Countdown, we knew the task at hand and everything just fell our way. I looked at the ladder match ups and knew we could control our own destiny-- we needed to get a first round win and we also needed Cruz [brother and teammate, Pedregon] to win his match-up. We were fortunate that it worked out to our benefit.It was a big win at just the right time."
Pedregon was paired against Countdown contender, Jack Beckman in the critical first round of Sunday's final eliminations.Pedregon nailed the tree with a .009 reaction time and went on to beat Beckman with a 5.040 E.T. to Beckman's 5.652.
"Everything the driver does is so important especially during the Countdown," Pedregon said. "You need to take advantage at every opportunity including times when you have a tough opponent like Beckman."
Pedregon went on to beat Tommy Johnson, Jr. in the quarterfinals and was set to face his former boss, John Force in the semifinals, but Force was injured in an accident with Kenny Bernstein at the top-end of the Texas Motorplex strip.Thus, Pedregon received a bye run in the semis and an opportunity to win lane choice for the finals.
"Our goal now is to try and maintain our lead.We'll prepare even harder going into Richmond, but I sure like our chances of staying in the Countdown now as compared to a few days ago."
"All of our best wishes go to John Force and his family," said Pedregon. "The good news we received was that John will recover from injuries to his ankle, knee and hands. That was the best news of the day; the second best news was that we were able to pull off a win."