Madison: Force racing final summary

Force claims 101st win in Sears Craftsman NationalS. John Force won for the first time since claiming his milestone 100th career victory Sunday, beating Scotty Cannon in an anticlimactic final found in the sixth annual Sears Craftsman Nationals...

Force claims 101st win in Sears Craftsman NationalS.

John Force won for the first time since claiming his milestone 100th career victory Sunday, beating Scotty Cannon in an anticlimactic final found in the sixth annual Sears Craftsman Nationals at Gateway International Raceway.

In becoming the season's first three-time winner in the Funny Car class, Force got a final round gift when Cannon was guilty of a foul start.

Although his Castrol GTX Ford Mustang wasn't its usual dominant self, Force still managed to retake the points lead from teammate Gary Densham, who lost to Cannon in the semifinals.

The Team Castrol Fords left the St. Louis area 1-2-3 in points halfway through the 23-race 2002 season.

TEAM CASTROL Details:

JOHN FORCE, Castrol GTX Ford Mustang Funny Car
Qualifying position and performance: 6th at 4.991 seconds, 296.18 mph.
Race results: Beat Tony Pedregon, Del Worsham, Ron Capps and Scotty Cannon.
Notable: Became first three-time winner this season and reclaimed the POWERade points lead from teammate Gary Densham. Quotable: "We got a little bit of a break in the final. Scotty Cannon is a man who's overdue for a win and he had a real consistent race car this weekend. In the final, I guess he just pushed the light a little and it was over. Then we went out there and smoked the tires." JOHN FORCE

TONY PEDREGON, Castrol SYNTEC Ford Mustang Funny Car
Qualifying position and performance: 11th at 5.059, 298.21 mph.
Race results: Lost to John Force.
Notable: Held onto third place in POWERade points behind teammates Gary Densham and John Force.
Quotable: "There's nothing really to say other than there's another race in three weeks and we'll just get 'em at Denver. We had a really good race car in the heat and that was encouraging. You just hate to have to run your teammate in the first round but we could have avoided that by qualifying a little better." TONY PEDREGON.

GARY DENSHAM, Team Castrol/Auto Club of Southern California Ford Funny Car:
Qualifying position and performance: 4th at 4.989, 294.88 mph.
Race results: Beat Tim Wilkerson, John Lawson; lost to Scotty Cannon.
Notable: Fell to second place in points, losing the lead for the first time in five races to teammate John Force.
Quotable: "We'll go after John again at Denver. We didn't think we'd keep the (points) lead for the rest of the year. There are just too many good cars out there and two of 'em are pitted right next to us (Force and Pedregon). We did go to the semifinals and that got us some more points but it's not all bad." GARY DENSHAM.

ROB SLAVINSKI, Castrol AccuVision Pontiac, Competition Eliminator
Qualifying position and performance: Did not participate.
Notable: Repairs to car, the result of a crash at the Pontiac Excitement Nationals at Columbus, Ohio, were not completed in time to compete.

ROB SLAVINSKI, Castrol Super Clean dragster, Super Comp Eliminator
Qualifying position and performance: All run.
Race results: Beat David Connolly; lost to Erica Enders.

Next event(s): Mopar Mile-High Nationals, July 19-21, Denver, Colo.; Lucas Oil Northwest Nationals, July 26-28, Seattle, Wash; Fram/Autolite Nationals, Aug. 2-4, Sonoma, Calif.; Colonel's Truck Accessories Nationals , Aug. 16-18, Brainerd, Minn.; U.S. Nationals, Aug. 29-Sept. 2, Indianapolis, Ind.

-jfr-

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Tony Pedregon , Del Worsham , Ron Capps , John Force , Gary Densham , Scotty Cannon , Tim Wilkerson , David Connolly