DIXON STORMS TO SEMIS, EARNS TOP SPOT FOR COUNTDOWN PEDREGON TAKES CAMRY SOLARA TO FUNNY CAR SEMIS TORRANCE, Calif. (July 25, 2010) -- Larry Dixon advanced to the semi-finals for the 12th time in 16 races this season and in the process earned...
DIXON STORMS TO SEMIS, EARNS TOP SPOT FOR COUNTDOWN
PEDREGON TAKES CAMRY SOLARA TO FUNNY CAR SEMIS
TORRANCE, Calif. (July 25, 2010) -- Larry Dixon advanced to the semi-finals for the 12th time in 16 races this season and in the process earned the number one seed in the upcoming Countdown to the Championship playoffs in Sunday's NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series' Mile-High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway in Morrison, Colo. The two-time NHRA Top Fuel champion defeated Morgan Lucas and Tony Schumacher in the first two rounds on Sunday. In securing the top spot in the Countdown, Dixon earns a 30-point advantage when the six-race playoff begins Labor Day weekend at the U.S. Nationals. Antron Brown was the event's number one qualifier and won his first-round elimination before falling to Brandon Bernstein in round two. It was a short afternoon for the Morgan Lucas Racing team as both Shawn Langdon, the number six qualifier, and teammate Lucas (number 12 qualifier) were eliminated in the first round. The news wasn't all bad for the team, though, as both drivers clinched their berths into the Countdown to the Championship playoffs. Each is guaranteed a spot in the top nine.
In Funny Cars, Cruz Pedregon registered his top finish of the season after advancing to the semi-finals before eventually falling to John Force. For the sixth consecutive race, Pedregon qualified in the top half of the field with a sixth. He then defeated Jeff Arend in the opening round and won an all-Toyota Camry Solara second-round defeating number three qualifier Del Worsham to advance to the semi-finals.
Despite losing to Pedregon, Worsham also punched his ticket for the playoffs as he currently holds a 164-point advantage over 10th-place Tony Pedregon.
After concluding the three-race western swing, the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series will take two weekends off before concluding its "regular season" at the Lucas Oil Nationals at Brainerd.
Larry Dixon, Al-Anabi Racing Toyota Top Fuel Dragster: "Today wasn't our day. We had a good run going in the semifinals, and the car pulled the tires loose for whatever reason. The consolation prize is the Al-Anabi Toyota team locked in the number one seed for the Countdown, and getting those extra 30 points over whoever ends up number two when the Countdown begins is big. I've said before that we sure could have used those extra 30 points last season so I'm glad to have them this year."
Del Worsham, Al-Anabi Racing Toyota Camry Solara: "The Al-Anabi Toyota team leaves Denver with a little more progress. We qualified number three and had a nice first-round win, but we didn't get it done in the second round. Everything has to work out just right to win a race, and it didn't happen for our team today. The good news is we clinched our spot in the Countdown and I am really proud of our Al-Anabi team for making that happen. We have one more race left in the regular season to be ready for the Countdown. The Al-Anabi Toyota team will be ready to go when we get to Brainerd next month."
Shawn Langdon, Lucas Oil/Speedco Toyota Top Fuel Dragster: "Our main goal at the start of the year was to make the field for the Countdown and we clinched our spot today, so that's good. Although it's hard to be super excited after a first-round loss; it was just a good race that we lost by a few feet. I was off a hundredth of a second from my reaction time average in qualifying and the car probably could have been a hundredth or two quicker so we could have been in a position to win because the difference was just two hundredths, but all these 'could haves' don't mean much."
-source: toyota motorsports