Capps and Skoal Racing Green Crew Confident as Racing Resumes at Pomona POMONA, Calif. (Feb. 24, 2004) -- Following a three month layoff from competitive racing action behind the wheel of his green Skoal Racing Chevy Funny Car, 14-time NHRA...
Capps and Skoal Racing Green Crew Confident as Racing Resumes at Pomona
POMONA, Calif. (Feb. 24, 2004) -- Following a three month layoff from competitive racing action behind the wheel of his green Skoal Racing Chevy Funny Car, 14-time NHRA national event winner Ron Capps was eager to get the first race of the 2004 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series season under his belt.
However, as she did throughout much of the 2003 NHRA season, Mother Nature played spoiler and put a damper on things as the 44th annual Winternationals were postponed because of wet conditions that blanketed Southern California last weekend. Capps returns to the site of his 1998 Winternationals triumph Feb. 27-29 to complete the 2004 season-opener at historic Pomona Raceway.
Capps, who began his eighth season as driver of a Prudhomme-owned Funny Car last Thursday, and fellow Skoal Racing driver Tommy Johnson Jr. unveiled the new Chevrolet Monte Carlo bodies that the duo will campaign during the 2004 NHRA season to the drag racing media prior to the first run of the year.
"You could tell a big difference being able to see out the Monte Carlo," Capps said. "That's a big plus. More vision is definitely a good thing when you're running 320 mph. The new body also has a lot of down force on the front end which will help us turn some consistent 4.70s."
Capps blasted his John Stewart-tuned green flopper to an explosive 5.136 second, 228.04 mph effort, good for the No. 10 position.
"We found the problem and figured out what it was that caused the fire," Capps said. "The problem wasn't tune-up related and that's a good sign. We plan on going very fast on our run this Friday.
"Another difference I noticed on the new Monte Carlo body was the size of the escape hatch. The old escape hatch was much smaller, so you had to take your time getting out with the HANS device. This time, I was able to open the hatch and jump out with no problem."
Another change Capps is adapting to is the addition of clutch guru Stewart to the Skoal Racing green crew. Stewart joins long-time Capps crew members Todd Okuhara and Phil Shuler in forming a triumvirate of drag racing minds to tune Capps' Skoal Racing flopper.
"I feel we have the perfect blend of guys," Capps said. "They think along with same lines, yet are not afraid to tell each other they don't agree on something. You don't want three yes-men that agree all the time. You're getting different input on things and you have three heads working from different angles. They all get along really well and there's no negativity in the Skoal Racing technology trailer and that's key."