Englishtown, NJ (Sept. 9): Less than a week after christening his new Army dragster with a victory in Indy, Tony Schumacher bowed out of the Matco Tools Spring SuperNationals in the second round of eliminations, but was able to maintain his ...
Englishtown, NJ (Sept. 9): Less than a week after christening his new Army dragster with a victory in Indy, Tony Schumacher bowed out of the Matco Tools Spring SuperNationals in the second round of eliminations, but was able to maintain his Winston Championship points lead.
Schumacher qualified No. 4 for this event back in May, until rain forced the event to be postponed. In the first round of eliminations, Schumacher faced Don Lampus, who lost to Schumacher's teammate Melanie Troxel in the first round at the U.S. Nationals last week.
Schumacher and Lampus both had traction problems immediately but Schumacher was first to recover and took the win with a 5.094 e.t. at 262.95 mph. "The driver saved us on that one," said crew chief Dan Olson.
That set up a second round matchup with Doug Kalitta, who Schumacher defeated in the final round to claim victory in Brainerd two races ago. Again, both drivers smoked their tires. This time Schumacher was not as lucky and was only able to run a 6.781 e.t. at 189.79 mph. Kalitta ran 5.427 to take the win light and move to the semifinals against Larry Dixon.
"We are all disappointed after last week," said Schumacher, "but you can't win every week."
"We still have the points lead. We'll just have to go to Reading and try to stretch the lead again."
Schumacher has a 31 points lead over Gary Scelzi and 102 point over Larry Dixon. Schumacher's teammate, Melanie Troxel will join Schumacher at the Keystone Nationals for her second start in the Exide Top Fuel dragster next week.