Dixon to tour USS Nimitz

VISTA, Calif. (Jan. 29, 2004) -- After taking flight at the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series season-opener at Pomona (Calif.) Raceway, Feb. 10-13, two-time NHRA Top Fuel champion and three-time Winternationals winner Larry Dixon will head to San...

VISTA, Calif. (Jan. 29, 2004) -- After taking flight at the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series season-opener at Pomona (Calif.) Raceway, Feb. 10-13, two-time NHRA Top Fuel champion and three-time Winternationals winner Larry Dixon will head to San Diego to tour the famed aircraft carrier the USS Nimitz.

The veteran Top Fuel pilot with 35 wins to his credit knows his way around an 8,000 horsepower Top Fuel dragster as well as anyone in the professional ranks, but Dixon has yet to captain a vessel that weighs more than 95,000 tons, stands 18 stories tall, has a length of 1,092 feet, a width of 252 feet, and a 4.5-acre flight deck. While the Nimitz doesn't reach speeds in excess of 300 mph, it is powered by four main engines and travels the open seas at more than 30 knots (35 mph).

"I'm looking forward to the opportunity to tour the Nimitz," Dixon said. "I've never been on a boat that big before. The only ship I've been on is the Intrepid during The Player's Run last summer and I didn't get a tour of it. It's pretty much a big, touring city. The ship holds more than 4,000 people. It should be really neat to check it out."

The USS Nimitz has answered the country's call many times in response to regional and international crisis. After being commissioned on May 3, 1975, the Nimitz was first deployed on July 7, 1976 in the Mediterranean and has seen action in the Gulf of Sidra near Libya, the Arabian Gulf during operation DESERT STORM, along with providing support to Operations ENDURING FREEDOM and IRAQI FREEDOM in Afghanistan and Iraq in 2003. The ship has been stationed in Norfolk, Va., and Bremerton, Wash., and currently ports in San Diego.

"We're extremely excited about Larry (Dixon) coming to the ship to see, firsthand, what our Sailors and Marines do in defense of our national interests," said Lieutenant Commander Brad Fagan, USS Nimitz Public Affairs Officer. "There are many drag racing fans aboard the ship who will be excited to meet Larry."

Commissioned in 1975, the USS Nimitz is the first of the Nimitz Class of nuclear-powered aircraft carriers and hosts a crew of nearly 4,800 Sailors and Marines. The ship's embarked air wing, Carrier Air Wing ELEVEN (CVW-11), consists of 60 airplanes.

Don Prudhomme Racing is headquartered in Vista, Calif., with a second shop -- Don Prudhomme Racing, Brownsburg, Ind. -- serving as thebase for racing operations. Drivers Larry Dixon and Tommy Johnson Jr. complete the roster of Don Prudhomme Racing drivers and proudly represent such racing partners as Miller Brewing Co., U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Co., Lucas Oil Products and Raybestos.

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Series NHRA
Drivers Larry Dixon , Don Prudhomme , Tommy Johnson Jr.