SCHUMACHER MOVES INTO SECOND STARTING POSITION ENNIS, Tex., September 25, 2010 -Â Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher, behind the wheel of his U.S. Army Top Fuel dragster, qualified second for Sunday's O'Reilly Super Start Batteries Fall Nationals here...
SCHUMACHER MOVES INTO SECOND STARTING POSITION
ENNIS, Tex., September 25, 2010 - Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher, behind the wheel of his U.S. Army Top Fuel dragster, qualified second for Sunday's O'Reilly Super Start Batteries Fall Nationals here at the Texas Motorplex.
After failing to claim a provisional starting position on Friday, Schumacher returned to the track on Saturday and promptly barged into the top two in the final race day order with a 3.799-second pass at 321.65 mph.
"I had all the faith in the world we would do the job today," said the defending world champion. "We had a couple of unlucky breaks yesterday, so it was just a matter of dusting ourselves off and taking care of business. Now, we can focus on race day."
On race day, Schumacher will square off with 15th-place qualifier, Mike Strasburg, in the opening round of final eliminations beginning at 11 a.m. CT. Schumacher beat Strasburg in the first round at Bandimere Speedway in their only meeting so far this season.
"We absolutely need to have a great Sunday," said Schumacher. "The time is now for the U.S. Army team. If we're going to remain in contention for another world title, we have to be hoisting the trophy tomorrow."
Schumacher arrived in Texas 148 points behind Larry Dixon, while holding third-place in the standings. Taking elimination rounds away from Dixon over the next four races has become extremely critical.
"There's no doubt about that," he added. "We need as many rounds as we can get. Of course, we'll also need some help from others relative to beating Larry early. You can be certain we're going to keep slugging it out right on through the season finale."
On Sunday, Schumacher will be seeking his fifth victory of the season and the 66th of his career. He's the defending O'Reilly Super Start Fall Nationals event champion.
"I've managed to total four wins here in Ennis," he said. "We'll be shooting for number five tomorrow."
Like Schumacher, Antron Brown, piloting his Matco Tools/U.S. Army dragster, improved in the Top Fuel order.
Brown advanced from eighth to fourth and will take on 13th-place qualifier, Chris Karamesines, in the first round. It will be their first meeting of the year.
On the U.S. Army NASCAR side, Ryan Newman will come out of the 13th starting spot in tomorrow's AAA 400 Sprint Cup race at Dover (Del.) International Speedway.