Pomona AutoZone Winternationals Sunday Review All Series

POMONA, Calif. - Gary Scelzi opened the 2000 NHRA season in impressive fashion, claiming the Top Fuel victory Sunday at the 40th annual AutoZone Winternationals at Pomona Raceway. Jerry Toliver, Jeg Coughlin and Bob Panella also were winners in...

POMONA, Calif. - Gary Scelzi opened the 2000 NHRA season in impressive fashion, claiming the Top Fuel victory Sunday at the 40th annual AutoZone Winternationals at Pomona Raceway. Jerry Toliver, Jeg Coughlin and Bob Panella also were winners in their respective pro categories during the $1.7 million race, the first of 23 events in the $45 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series. Scelzi, from Fresno, Calif., recorded his 15th career Top Fuel victory by posting a winning run of 4.613 seconds at 317.79 mph in his Team Winston dragster, defeating defending series champion Tony Schumacher, who posted a 4.712 at 309.56 in his Exide Batteries dragster. The thrilling side-by-side final capped an efficient day of racing that was free of delays for oil cleanup. During the off-season NHRA introduced rules limiting the amount of nitromethane to 90-percent for Top Fuel and Funny Car teams. In addition, the time for teams to service their race cars was reduced to 75 minutes. Penalties and fines for oiling the racing surface also were established. "I am proud to be associated with NHRA Winston Drag Racing right now," said Scelzi, who put together a string of consistent 4.60 second runs in round wins over Tim Gibson, Cory McClenathan and Larry Dixon to advance to the final, which ended just past 4:30 p.m. local time. "It was awesome out there today. I didn't have time to get nervous. We changed four motors and had the car started within 40 minutes each time. During testing we worked with the 90-percent (nitro) rule and the 75-minute rule. Today, that preparation paid off." With the victory, Scelzi moved into eighth place on the all-time Top Fuel win list, edging ahead of Don Prudhomme, Gary Ormsby and Scott Kalitta. "I never thought I would win one of these races, much less 15," said an emotional Scelzi, who anticipates more final round meetings with his young rival. "I like rivalries and I think the sport needs them. Tony is a champion - he proved that last year. To beat Tony today is extra-special. He's the defending champion, but that was last year. For now, we're back to number one." Toliver, from Huntington Beach, Calif., used a holeshot start to claim his second career Funny Car victory, and second straight at Pomona Raceway. Toliver used a quick .456 reaction time and drove his WWF Racing Chevy Camaro to a 4.970 at 309.06, overcoming the quicker 4.929 at 308.35 by the Castrol Syntec Ford Mustang driven by Tony Pedregon. "Every opponent I had today made me nervous, but I had to dig down deep and make it happen," said Toliver, who defeated Bob Gilbertson, Whit Bazemore and Gary Densham to advance to the final round. "I'm here, I'm happy and we're going for the Winston championship. That's what it's all about. This is a great way to get started." Coughlin, from Columbus, Ohio, earned his third straight Pomona Raceway victory in five consecutive finals here and took his 11th win overall in Pro Stock, defeating defending series champ Warren Johnson. Coughlin ran 6.894 at 199.17 in his Jeg's Mail Order Oldsmobile Cutlass to power away from Johnson, who posted a 6.953 at 197.65 in his GM Goodwrench Pontiac Firebird. "We've always stressed preparation," said Coughlin, who defeated John Fairleigh, Greg Anderson and Tom Martino for the final round opportunity. "Today we were ready and showed a lot of consistency. The entire team made this win happen. It's great." Stockton, Calif.'s Panella claimed his fifth career Pro Stock Truck victory and first at Pomona Raceway, edging Greg Stanfield for the win in a battle of Chevy S-10s. The defending series champion covered the quarter-mile in 7.544 at 178.52, overcoming a holeshot start by Stanfield, who crossed the finish line with a 7.568 at 179.09. "What a day," Panella said. "We worked hard over the winter to be in this position and it worked out for us." The next NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series event is the 16th annual Checker Schuck's Kragen Nationals, Feb. 24-27, at Firebird International Raceway near Phoenix.

POMONA, Calif. -- Sunday's final results from the 40th Annual AutoZone Winternationals at Pomona Raceway. The $1.7 million race is the first of 23 events in the $45 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series:

Top Fuel - Gary Scelzi, Fresno, Calif., 4.613 seconds, 317.79 mph def. Tony Schumacher, Park Ridge, Ill., 4.712 seconds, 309.56 mph.

Funny Car - Jerry Toliver, Huntington Beach, Calif., Chevrolet Camaro, 4.970, 309.06 def. Tony Pedregon, Chino Hills, Calif., Ford Mustang, 4.929, 308.35.

Pro Stock - Jeg Coughlin, Columbus, Ohio, Oldsmobile Cutlass, 6.894, 199.17 def. Warren Johnson, Buford, Ga., Pontiac Firebird, 6.953, 197.65.

Pro Stock Truck - Bob Panella Jr, Stockton, Calif., Chevrolet S-10, 7.544, 178.52 def. Greg Stanfield, Bossier City, La., S-10, 7.568, 179.09.

Federal-Mogul Dragster - Rick Santos, San Leandro, Calif., 5.365, 262.74 def. Dale Carlson, Olympia, Wash., 5.446, 260.41.

Federal-Mogul Funny Car - Larry Miner, Woodbridge, Calif., Dodge Avenger, 5.682, 256.02 def. Jay Payne, Upland, Calif., Camaro, 5.721, 234.25.

Comp Eliminator - Bryan Morrison, Chino Hills, Calif., '92 Camaro, 8.822, 151.04 def. Jeff Gillette, Benicia, Calif., 7.038, 189.63.

Super Stock - Bill Bennett, Mt. View, Calif., Camaro, 10.530, 132.99 def. Keri Angeles, Fountain Valley, Calif., Firebird, foul.

Stock - Don Little, Westly, Calif., Plymouth Barracuda, 10.365, 127.84 def. Toby Lang, Auburn, Wash., Chevrolet Chevelle, 11.834, 108.34.

Super Comp - Kyle Seipel, San Leandro, Calif., 8.880, 151.83 def. Mark Cavar, Puyallup,, Wash., 8.868, 166.62.

Super Gas - Bob Herr, Sacramento, Calif., Corvette, 9.962, 148.76 def. Steve Williams, Loma Linda, Calif., Chevrolet Beretta, 9.996, 145.85.

POMONA, Calif. -- Final round-by-round results from the 40th annual AutoZone Winternationals at Pomona Raceway, the first of 23 events in the $45 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series:

TOP FUEL:

ROUND ONE -- Doug Herbert, Cherryville, N.C., 6.603, 177.84 def. Doug Kalitta, Ypsilanti, Mich., 9.114, 80.05; Doug Herbert, Cherryville, N.C., 6.603, 177.84 def. Scott Kalitta, Ypsilanti, Mich., 9.114, 80.05; Cory McClenathan, Anaheim, Calif., 4.830, 298.87 def. Melanie Troxel, Lilttleton, Colo., 6.680, 140.72; Kenny Bernstein, Lake Forest, Calif., 4.689, 314.53 def. Bruce Litton, Indianapolis, 4.754, 312.06; Joe Amato, Exeter, Pa., 4.610, 321.35 def. David Grubnic, Ennis, Mont., 5.127, 217.84; Gary Scelzi, Fresno, Calif., 4.672, 313.22 def. Tim Gibson, Irvine, Calif., 11.168, 85.62; Larry Dixon, Indianapolis, 4.724, 306.26 def. Bobby Baldwin, Upland, Calif., 6.640, 123.89; Tony Schumacher, Park Ridge, Ill., 4.684, 313.88 def. Don Lampus, Garland, Texas, 4.777, 309.77; Doug Kalitta, Ypsilanti, Mich., 4.777, 305.63 def. Robert Reehl, Whittier, Calif., 4.840, 300.46; QUARTERFINALS -- Dixon, 4.917, 273.16 def. Bernstein, 4.862, 291.95; Schumacher, 4.717, 307.44 def. D. Kalitta, 6.472, 132.76; Amato, 4.657, 316.23 def. Herbert, 6.308, 143.03; Scelzi, 4.633, 313.29 def. McClenathan, 4.762, 309.84; SEMIFINALS -- Schumacher, 4.691, 311.77 def. Amato, 8.428, 90.34; Scelzi, 4.605, 317.12 def. Dixon, 4.750, 311.92; FINAL -- Scelzi, 4.613, 317.79 def. Schumacher, 4.712, 309.56.

FUNNY CAR:

ROUND ONE -- Bruce Sarver, Bakersfield, Calif., Pontiac Firebird, 5.095, 260.31 def. Al Hofmann, Umatilla, Fla., Firebird, 5.114, 287.05; Kenny Sayers, Houston, Chevrolet Corvette, 5.534, 247.20 def. Dean Skuza, Brecksville, Ohio, Dodge Avenger, 11.813, 88.50; John Force, Yorba Linda, Calif., Ford Mustang, 5.020, 300.06 def. Frank Pedregon, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., Firebird, broke; Jerry Toliver, Huntington Beach, Calif., Chevrolet Camaro, 4.949, 306.46 def. Bob Gilbertson, Gastonia, N.C., Camaro, 6.191, 159.57; Del Worsham, Laguna Hills, Calif., Firebird, 5.065, 300.40 def. Jim Epler, Phoenix, Firebird, 5.852, 170.36; Gary Densham, Bellflower, Calif., Firebird, 5.166, 292.46 def. Ron Capps, Carlsbad, Calif., Camaro, 5.163, 278.40; Whit Bazemore, Indianapolis, Camaro, 5.025, 306.33 def. Phil Burkart, Yorkville, N.Y., Firebird, 5.059, 305.84; Tony Pedregon, Chino Hills, Calif., Mustang, 5.042, 311.20 def. Johnny Gray, Carlsbad, N.M., Firebird, 9.541, 98.25; QUARTERFINALS -- Sarver, 4.956, 310.70 def. Worsham, 9.688, 87.81; T. Pedregon, 4.976, 310.84 def. Force, 4.983, 311.13; Toliver, 4.950, 309.91 def. Bazemore, 4.962, 309.98; Densham, 5.791, 244.03 def. Sayers, 12.636, 80.12; SEMIFINALS -- T. Pedregon, 4.830, 309.98 def. Sarver, broke; Toliver, 4.934, 313.22 def. Densham, 5.121, 285.65; FINAL -- Toliver, 4.970, 309.06 def. T. Pedregon, 4.929, 308.35.

PRO STOCK:

ROUND ONE -- Kurt Johnson, Lawrenceville, Ga., Chevrolet Camaro, 7.372, 130.86 def. Ron Krisher, Warren, Ohio, Pontiac Firebird, broke; Greg Anderson, Jacksonville, N.C., Firebird, 6.963, 197.77 def. Mark Pawuk, Akron, Ohio, Firebird, 6.954, 198.85; Allen Johnson, Greeneville, Tenn., Dodge Avenger, 7.017, 196.73 def. Steve Schmidt, Indianapolis, Firebird, 7.042, 197.31; Warren Johnson, Buford, Ga., Firebird, 6.952, 197.48 def. Bruce Allen, Arlington, Texas, Firebird, 6.950, 197.97; Richie Stevens, New Orleans, Firebird, 6.959, 197.77 def. Troy Coughlin, Columbus, Ohio, Oldsmobile Cutlass, 8.359, 113.09; Tom Martino, Farmingdale, N.J., Firebird, 6.940, 200.17 def. Mike Trumble, Pasadena, Texas, Firebird, 8.386, 118.52; Jeg Coughlin, Columbus, Ohio, Cutlass, 6.912, 199.37 def. John Fairleigh, Scott City, Kan., Firebird, 6.999, 194.91; George Marnell, Las Vegas, Firebird, 6.982, 197.13 def. Jim Yates, Alexandria, Va., Firebird, 6.940, 199.02; QUARTERFINALS -- Marnell, 6.990, 196.73 def. K. Johnson, 17.818, 61.76; W. Johnson, 6.959, 197.28 def. Stevens, 6.979, 197.02; Martino, 6.967, 199.52 def. A. Johnson, foul; J. Coughlin, 6.903, 199.20 def. Anderson, foul; SEMIFINALS -- W. Johnson, 6.940, 197.62 def. Marnell, 6.993, 198.03; J. Coughlin, 6.904, 199.32 def. Martino, 6.921, 200.17; FINAL -- J. Coughlin, 6.894, 199.17 def. W. Johnson, 6.953, 197.65.

PRO STOCK TRUCK:

ROUND ONE -- Mark Whisnant, Stockbridge, Ga., Chevrolet S-10, 7.622, 177.51 def. Rob Slavinski, Wallingford, Conn., S-10, 7.685, 176.35; Jeff Gracia, Ontario, Calif., S-10, 7.599, 177.81 def. David Spitzer, Indianapolis, GMC Sonoma, 7.601, 176.60; Steve Johns, Lancaster, Pa., S-10, 7.571, 178.73 def. Bart Price, Hayward, Calif., S-10, 7.623, 178.31; John Lingenfelter, Decatur, Ind., Sonoma, 7.590, 178.17 def. Taylor Lastor, Austin, Texas, S-10, 7.670, 176.77; Rick Jones, Galesburg, Ill., Sonoma, 7.600, 177.21 def. Brad Jeter, Greenville, S.C., S-10, 7.597, 178.80; John Coughlin, Columbus, Ohio, S-10, 7.596, 177.63 def. Mike Coughlin, Columbus, Ohio, S-10, 7.650, 176.63; Bob Panella Jr, Stockton, Calif., S-10, 7.508, 178.78 def. Brian Self, Houston, S-10, 7.628, 176.56; Greg Stanfield, Bossier City, La., S-10, 7.559, 178.80 def. Scott Tidwell, Pinson, Ala., S-10, 7.642, 177.07; QUARTERFINALS -- J. Coughlin, 7.604, 177.98 def. Lingenfelter, 8.544, 125.97; Johns, 7.590, 178.35 def. Whisnant, 7.627, 177.70; Stanfield, 7.540, 178.85 def. Jones, 7.621, 177.58; Panella Jr, 7.553, 178.64 def. Gracia, 7.601, 177.93; SEMIFINALS -- J. Coughlin, 7.624, 177.58 def. Panella Jr, 7.509, 178.83; Stanfield, 7.580, 178.83 def. Johns, 7.634, 178.50; FINAL -- Panella Jr, 7.544, 178.52 def. Stanfield, 7.568, 179.09.

POMONA, Calif. - Point standings (top 10) for NHRA professional categories following the 40th annual AutoZone Winternationals at Pomona Raceway. The $1.7 million race is the first of 23 events in the $45 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series.

TOP FUEL: 1. Gary Scelzi, 117; 2. Tony Schumacher, 95; 3. Joe Amato, 78; 4. Larry Dixon, 76; 5. Doug Kalitta, 54; 6. Kenny Bernstein, 54; 7. Doug Herbert, 53; 8. Cory McClenathan, 52; 9. Melanie Troxel, 33; 10. Scott Kalitta, 32.

FUNNY CAR: 1. Jerry Toliver, 117; 2. Tony Pedregon, 93; 3. Bruce Sarver, 75; 4. Gary Densham, 72; 5. John Force, 58; 6. Whit Bazemore, 53; 7. Del Worsham, 52; 8. Kenny Sayers, 51; 9. Dean Skuza, 36; 10. Jim Epler, 34.

PRO STOCK: 1. Jeg Coughlin Jr., 117; 2.Warren Johnson, 92; 3. Tom Martino, 76; 4. George Marnell, 71; 5. Kurt Johnson, 53; 6. Greg Anderson, 52; 7. Allen Johnson, 52; 8. Richie Stevens, 51; 9. Jim Yates, 38; 10. Troy Coughlin, Columbus, Ohio, 35.

PRO STOCK TRUCK (Following the first of 14 events)1. Bob Panella, 117; 2. Greg Stanfield, 95; 3. Steve Johns, 78; 4. John Coughlin, 76; 5. John Lingenfelter, 54; 6. Mark Whisnant, 53; 7. Jeff Gracia, 52; 8. Rick Jones, 52; 9. Brad Jeter, 34; 10. David Spitzer, 33.

POMONA, Calif. - Final finish order (1-16) for professional categories at the 40th annual AutoZone Winternationals at Pomona Raceway. The $1.7 million race is the first of 23 events in the $45 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series.

TOP FUEL:

1. Gary Scelzi; 2. Tony Schumacher; 3. Larry Dixon; 4. Joe Amato; 5. Cory McClenathan; 6. Kenny Bernstein; 7. Doug Herbert; 8. Doug Kalitta; 9. Bruce Litton; 10. Don Lampus; 11. Robert Reehl; 12. David Grubnic; 13. Bobby Baldwin; 14. Melanie Troxel; 15. Scott Kalitta; 16. Tim Gibson.

FUNNY CAR:

1. Jerry Toliver, Chevrolet Camaro; 2. Tony Pedregon, Ford Mustang; 3. Gary Densham, Pontiac Firebird; 4. Bruce Sarver, Firebird; 5. Whit Bazemore, Camaro; 6. John Force, Mustang, 7. Del Worsham, Firebird, 8. Kenny Sayers, Chevrolet Corvette, 9. Phil Burkart, Firebird; 10. Del Worsham, Firebird, 11. Al Hofmann, Firebird; 12. Ron Capps, Camaro; 13. Bob Gilbertson, Camaro; 14. Dean Skuza, Dodge Avenger; 15. Johnny Gray, Avenger, 16. Frank Pedregon, Firebird.

PRO STOCK:

1. Jeg Coughlin, Oldsmobile Cutlass; 2. Warren Johnson, Pontiac Firebird; 3. Tom Martino, Firebird; 4. George Marnell, Firebird; 5. Greg Anderson, Firebird; 6. Richie Stevens, Firebird; 7. Allen Johnson, Dodge Avenger; 8. Kurt Johnson, Chevrolet Camaro; 9. Jim Yates, Firebird; 10. Bruce Allen, Firebird; 11. Mark Pawuk, Firebird; 12. John Fairleigh, Firebird; 13. Steve Schmidt, Firebird; 14. Troy Coughlin, Cutlass; 15. Mike Trumble, Firebird; 16. Ron Krisher, Firebird.

PRO STOCK TRUCK:

1. Bob Panella, S-10; 2. Greg Stanfield, Chvrolet S-10; 3. John Coughlin, S-10; 4. Steve Johns, S-10; 5. Jeff Garcia, S-10; 6. Rick Jones, GMC Sonoma, 7. Mark Whisnant, S-10; 8. John Lingenfelter, Sonoma; 9. Brad Jeter, S-10; 10. David Spitzer, Sonoma; 11. Bart Price, S-10; 12. Brian Self, S-10; 13. Scott Tidwell, S-10, 14. Mike Coughlin, S-10; 15. Taylor Lastor, S-10; 16. Rob Slavinski, S-10.

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Series NHRA
Drivers Doug Herbert , Bruce Litton , Bruce Sarver , Frank Pedregon , Jeg Coughlin , Troy Coughlin , Bob Panella , Larry Dixon , Kenny Bernstein , Brad Jeter , Mark Pawuk , Kurt Johnson , Warren Johnson , Bob Gilbertson , Jim Epler , Tony Pedregon , Al Hofmann , Dean Skuza , Del Worsham , Whit Bazemore , Ron Capps , John Force , Tony Schumacher , Joe Amato , Gary Scelzi , Doug Kalitta , Greg Anderson , Ron Krisher , Jeff Gracia , Mike Coughlin , Rick Santos , John Lingenfelter , David Grubnic , Gary Densham , Cory McClenathan , Scott Kalitta , Don Prudhomme , Greg Stanfield , Bruce Allen , Tom Martino , Phil Burkart , Melanie Troxel , George Marnell , Allen Johnson , Johnny Gray , Don Lampus , Steve Schmidt , Tim Gibson , Mark Whisnant , Jay Payne , Brian Self , Mike Trumble , Steve Williams , Jerry Toliver , Robert Reehl , Steve J
Teams Williams