DSR TO FIELD SEVEN PRO NHRA TEAMS IN 2007 INDIANAPOLIS (Jan. 26, 2007) - Don Schumacher Racing will field seven race teams in all four pro classes of the 2007 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series: one in Top Fuel, three in Funny Car, one in Pro...
DSR TO FIELD SEVEN PRO NHRA TEAMS IN 2007
INDIANAPOLIS (Jan. 26, 2007) - Don Schumacher Racing will field seven race teams in all four pro classes of the 2007 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series: one in Top Fuel, three in Funny Car, one in Pro Stock and two in Pro Stock Motorcycle.
Former Funny Car driver Don Schumacher became a team owner in 1998 with son Tony Schumacher driving in Top Fuel, then became a multi-team owner in 2001 with the addition of a Funny Car. With seven teams in 2007, DSR now employs 80 team members, administrative personnel, fabrication and machine shop engineers and hospitality staff. DSR will take 11 or 12 transporters to NHRA races (12 to events where the Pro Stock Motorcycles race) plus two to four additional trucks and trailers with show cars and supplies.
In Top Fuel, DSR will again field a team for driver, Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher, who will carry the U.S. Army's colors for the eighth straight year. His crew chief, Alan Johnson, returns for his fourth full season.
Last year, Schumacher staged the greatest comeback in NHRA history to claim his third consecutive Top Fuel world championship and the fourth of his career.
Three Funny Cars will be campaigned under the DSR banner in 2007:
The Mopar/Oakley Dodge Charger driven by four-time NHRA world champion Gary Scelzi, who enters his fifth season with DSR. Scelzi joined the Funny Car class full-time in 2003 with DSR, then claimed his first Funny Car crown in 2005 to go with his three Top Fuel championships. Crew chief Mike Neff is also back for a seventh season at DSR, his sixth as a DSR crew chief.
Ron Capps returns to drive the Brut Revolution Dodge Charger Funny Car in his third year with DSR, after battling to the finish for the Funny Car title in two straight seasons. A championship runner-up three times in his career, Capps is aiming to earn his first Funny Car crown. Legendary Ed "Ace" McCulloch will continue to tune the Brut Dodge.
Jack Beckman, who joined DSR after the 2006 U.S. Nationals to finish the season in the Matco Tools Dodge Funny Car, returns to that class in 2007 to drive the Mail Terminal Services Dodge Funny Car. A Funny Car rookie in the last five races of the 2006 season, Beckman stunned everyone by winning one event in two final rounds, and setting both the elapsed-time and top-speed national records. Tuner Todd Okuhara is eager to carry that momentum into 2007 in pursuit of the Funny Car championship in his first full season as a DSR crew chief.
For 2007, DSR renewed its alliance with Roy and Allen Johnson's J&J Racing team to campaign both the Team Mopar/Valspar Dodge Stratus for Richie Stevens Jr. and the matching Team Mopar Dodge Stratus of Allen Johnson. Roy Johnson will supply Hemi power for both entries and Mark Ingersoll will serve as crew chief for both cars. Stevens, who joined DSR in 2005, improved markedly in the last five events of 2006 after joining forces with J&J, winning twice.
PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE:
DSR will return in 2007 with a pair of new Suzuki TL1000 Pro Stock Motorcycles, also sponsored by the U.S. Army.
Antron Brown, after finishing second in the standings last year, will be looking to pocket his first world title, while Angelle Sampey will be eying her fourth crown.
Brown and Sampey will again be led by crew chief, Steve Tartaglia.
"There's been a lot of talk and gossip in the last year about the changes within the Don Schumacher Racing operation," said Schumacher. "I can only say that when you have a team as large as ours, as it is with any corporation, changes are constantly occurring. We have seven very capable teams this year and our operation has become an efficient, well-functioning machine.
"We discussed the possibility of campaigning another Top Fuel car for Jack Beckman, instead of the Funny Car, but after he established his remarkable record at the end of 2006, it was clear that the momentum was there to continue in that class and aim for a championship.
"It does not mean that we won't be adding new teams in the future, but, for now, we will focus our efforts on winning championships for all the outstanding sponsors who continue to support us, and for the new sponsors who have joined us this season.
"There is no more-talented or hard-working group of people in any form of motorsports than we have here at DSR, and we will all be working together solidly in 2007 to achieve our goals and our sponsors' goals."