CHEVROLET NOTES AND QUOTES NHRA TRUE VALUE KEYSTONE NATIONALS MAPLE GROVE RACEWAY NHRA WINSTON DRAG RACING SERIES SUNDAY, SEPT. 19, 1999 FUNNY CAR -- CAMARO Z28 -- FINAL ROUND RON CAPPS, COPENHAGEN CAMARO Z28, was defeated by Tommy Johnson Jr.
CHEVROLET NOTES AND QUOTES NHRA TRUE VALUE KEYSTONE NATIONALS MAPLE GROVE RACEWAY NHRA WINSTON DRAG RACING SERIES SUNDAY, SEPT. 19, 1999
FUNNY CAR -- CAMARO Z28 -- FINAL ROUND
RON CAPPS, COPENHAGEN CAMARO Z28, was defeated by Tommy Johnson Jr. in the final round, Ron's first all season. Ron's 5.363-second pass at 251.88 mph was no match for Johnson's 5.108/281.51. This was Capps' first final round appearance in 18 races, the longest stretch of his Funny car career
CAPPS: "It did feel good to go rounds, that's for sure. You start to forget how it feels after the season we've had. It's disappointing. This team is made up of champions. We were so close I could taste it. We have been having problems all day. We had a lot of problems. On days like this you just need to try to get down the track and really we thought we had the problem fixed. We found some things before the final round. The guys made the necessary adjustments. We felt like it would run a 4.95 or a 5.0, like it did in qualifying. At about a second into the run it shook real bad. I pedaled it. The Camaro took off pretty good after that, and I saw his car through the window next to me. It must have had a cylinder out because it kept going to the centerline. I wanted to stay with him in case he made a mistake so we could be right there. But I had to click it off real early, because it kicked a couple of rods out and it started an oil fire. I got on the fire bottles and eventually put it out. It caused a little body damage to the Camaro. Fortunately, we have a weekend off so we can regroup and get ready for Topeka. We feel like we are doing a lot better. The weekend wasn't a total loss; it looks like we moved up a way in points (10th). It's tough to swallow when you get this close, though."
ON THE SECOND ROUND AGAINST FRANK PEDREGON (6.751/159.74 for Capps, 8.222/92.39 for Pedregon): "We knew we had an engine problem going up there. We were trying to nurse it through the burnout and get the Camaro staged. I deep staged and turned the top light off hoping he would red-light because I didn't plan on running all the way down the track because of the problems we had. We both left, he didn't red-light, then my car started to shake. I didn't get back on the throttle because I knew the engine wouldn't take it. I let off. His car popped up in the side window, I thought he was driving away. Then I saw a ball of flame. I pushed it half throttle and scooted by him. I was glad I didn't have to have a pedaling contest with him because I didn't think the engine would have made it through a smoke-out duel to the finish line. We were lucky to get through the round."
ON THE POINTS: "Right now it shows the points between 10th and seventh only being less than one round and that's encouraging. We're trying to set a goal; it's tough to set goals without shooting for a championship. If we can make it to the top five it will be a great achievement. There are not too many races left, we have to continue what we did this weekend. It's not out of the question, but it's part of the reason you are out here -- to set goals and count those valuable Winston points."
FUNNY CAR POINT STANDINGS:
1. John Force 1549 2. Tony Pedregon 1269 3. Whit Bazemore 1156 4. Frank Pedregon 868 5. Dean Skuza 813 6. Del Worsham 768 7. Tim Wilkerson 675 8. Cory Lee 674 9. Jim Epler 669 10. Ron Capps 665