FOUR-TIME NHRA CHAMP SCELZI MAKES RETURN TO NORWALK FRESNO, Calif. (June 27, 2007) - The Inaugural Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals in Norwalk, Ohio, is not a new venue for the four-time NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series champion Gary...
FOUR-TIME NHRA CHAMP SCELZI MAKES RETURN TO NORWALK
FRESNO, Calif. (June 27, 2007) - The Inaugural Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals in Norwalk, Ohio, is not a new venue for the four-time NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series champion Gary Scelzi, who drives the Mopar/Oakley Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car for Don Schumacher Racing. This weekend marks a return for him to the quarter-mile at Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park.
"We had a match race there with John Force a couple of years ago, on the Fourth of July, so we've been there," said Scelzi, winner of two national events this season, both times from pole position. "The track is really good, with all the improvements they've done. I'm sure it's going to be pretty incredible. I know they have spent millions on it, and Bill Bader is a hell of a promoter. I think were going to get a whole new group of fans and people who are IHRA fans who maybe never made the trek to Columbus (site of former NHRA national events in Ohio).
"So, I'm looking forward to it. I know it's going to be hot and miserable, and I think because of what we learned about the Mopar/Oakley Dodge's tune-up over the Englishtown weekend, even though it wasn't that hot there, we're going to be OK. We'll go to Norwalk and maybe we can scratch that one right off the first time we go there."
Before this season, of his 35 national-event victories, there were only two sites at which Scelzi had never won: Gainesville, Fla., and Englishtown, N.J. With the addition of Norwalk to the NHRA schedule, he now has three.
Scelzi is third in the Funny Car point standings. He and teammate Ron Capps have won five of the 10 national events so far for DSR. The Fresno native is on a "hiatus tour," as he has said he would step down from NHRA competition at the end of this year. "I'm not retiring," he explained. "I'm just taking a sabbatical to spend more time with my family and my family business."
He also holds the longest active consecutive qualifying streak at 28! His win in Chicago tied him with Don Garlits for 13th on the all-time NHRA POWERade wins list (all categories) - and 10th in Funny Car, which placed him next to Don Prudhomme, Kenny Bernstein, and Mike Dunn as the only drivers with double-digit wins in both nitro categories.