SCHUMACHER DROPS OUT IN QUARTERFINALS NORWALK, Ohio, June 28 - U.S. Army Top Fuel driver Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher was taken out in the quarterfinals here Sunday in the Summit Racing Equipment Nationals at Summit Motorsports Park. Schumacher...
SCHUMACHER DROPS OUT IN QUARTERFINALS
NORWALK, Ohio, June 28 - U.S. Army Top Fuel driver Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher was taken out in the quarterfinals here Sunday in the Summit Racing Equipment Nationals at Summit Motorsports Park.
Schumacher smoked the tires at the hit of the throttle against rookie Spencer Massey and suddenly his day came to an end.
"That's frustrating when you don't get off the starting line and then you have to watch your opponent move on down the track," said the six-time world champion. "The track conditions changed a lot between the first round and second round, so I'm sure that gave all of the crew chiefs fits."
Prior to his opening round victory over Morgan Lucas, Schumacher had to sit through an hour and a half rain delay. During that time, track temperatures dropped to about 90 degrees. However, by the time he rolled back up for round two, those same track temperatures had soared to more than 120 degrees.
"There's no question it was a tough deal out there," said the Chicago-area resident. "The bottom line is Spencer and his team managed to get the win light and we didn't. We'll pick up the pieces and move on from here. We're like our Army Strong Soldiers - we'll never quit."
Schumacher's early exit will cost him relative to the standings as both point leader Antron Brown and third-place Larry Dixon advanced beyond the quarterfinal round.
"We'll be just fine," he offered. "Between now and when we head for Denver in a couple of weeks, I'm sure the guys will be working extremely hard so we'll be totally prepared for what will be a challenging stretch of races."
The Mopar Mile-High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway, July 10-12, will mark the start of the NHRA's infamous Western Swing, which will also go through Seattle and Sonoma, Calif. on successive weekends. Schumacher swept all three races last year.
"And, we'd love to go out there and do it again," he added. "We have just six races remaining before the Countdown to One, so we need to put things together real quick."