Don Schumacher Racing press release
U.S. ARMY NHRA DRIVERS SEEK REBOUND PERFORMANCE
MOHNTON, Pa., Sept. 27, 2011 - U.S. Army NHRA Top Fuel drivers Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher and Antron Brown will look to calm the waters here this weekend when they stroll into Maple Grove Raceway for the 27th annual Auto-Plus NHRA Nationals.
Having posted a second-round loss (Schumacher) and a semifinal-round loss (Brown) at the Texas Motorplex last Sunday, each driver is determined to forge ahead when the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series arrives at the track known as "The Grove" outside of Reading.
"We have to move forward and not get bogged down in the past," said Schumacher, still winless in 2011. "We have four races remaining in the season and anything can happen during that stretch. We can easily go out and run the table - we have that good of a car and team."
"I feel the same way," said Brown, who lost the points lead to his Don Schumacher Racing teammate, Spencer Massey, following his result in the AAA Texas NHRA Fall Nationals. "You can't change what has happened. You have to focus on the next race and be totally prepared."
The Auto-Plus NHRA Nationals marks the halfway point in the NHRA's six-race Countdown to the Championship.
Brown, with six wins to date this year, holds second-place in the standings and is just seven points behind Massey. Schumacher, who resides in fifth, is 72 points in back of Massey.
"The Countdown is far from over for anyone," said Brown. "The competition has been incredibly tough all season and I don't see that changing at all in the coming weeks. You can really throw a blanket over the top-five. You better bring your 'A' game every time you roll to the starting line or you are going to go home early."
"No doubt, it's very intense right now," offered Schumacher. "We haven't won as yet, but we're still right there knocking on the door. Like our Army Strong Soldiers, we refuse to accept defeat. We're going to give it everything we have the next four races and, hopefully, that will produce another world championship."
Both drivers are eagerly anticipating the trip to the Keystone State. For Brown, a New Jersey native, it's another opportunity to race in front of a large contingent of family and friends, while for Schumacher he's returning to a track he likes a bunch.
"I really enjoy racing on the East Coast given that's where I grew up," said Brown, now an Indianapolis resident. "I've never won at Maple Grove (in Top Fuel or Pro Stock Motorcycles), so it would be special if we can leave this year with a trophy."
"We've had some good runs there over the years," said Schumacher, a four-time winner at Maple Grove. "Of course, the past does not guarantee you success in the present. This weekend, the goal is to go out and grab every point available."