Seattle: Matt Hagan preview

HAGAN HOPING FOR A MOVE UP IN STANDINGS IN SEATTLE CHRISTIANSBURG, Va. (July 6, 2010) - Matt Hagan is sitting in third place in the 2010 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series Funny Car point standings as the circuit heads to the 23rd annual NHRA...

HAGAN HOPING FOR A MOVE UP IN STANDINGS IN SEATTLE

CHRISTIANSBURG, Va. (July 6, 2010) - Matt Hagan is sitting in third place in the 2010 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series Funny Car point standings as the circuit heads to the 23rd annual NHRA Northwest Nationals in Washington State this weekend. He'd like to move up the roster before the Countdown to 1 playoffs kick in for the top 10 in points in the final six races of the season.

The 27-year-old Angus Cattle farmer from Christiansburg, Va., is well-grounded and wise, however, about what it would take to realize his dream of winning a championship in his second full season of NHRA pro competition. Driving the DieHard Dodge Charger Funny Car for Don Schumacher Racing, he's already won two national events this year in as many final rounds and qualified No. 1 once. He knows he's got the team, crew chief and car to get the job done.

"Obviously, I want to be No. 1," he said. "But, being realistic about it, I would love to be in the top five. We're already in third, so it is very doable. The better we do, the more chances we'll have of not only locking in a spot in the Countdown early but securing a high position as we enter the playoffs. So, I'd love to be No. 1, and No. 3 is pretty good, but we're barely holding on to that. We're only about one race out of No. 2, so, if we have a good race or two on this Western Swing I think things will come together for us. We have a potential championship-winning car. We're right there. It's not out of reach."

Seattle is the first of three back-to-back events making up the Western Swing (followed by Sonoma, Calif., and Denver), and it follows an off weekend after a four-race back-to-back stretch, in which Hagan won his second race of the year in Chicago, then earned a semifinal, quarterfinal and first-round finish in the ensuing events.

"I'm excited coming into Seattle," said Hagan. "We had some time off and we're going right back into a three-race swing. The DieHard Dodge is running good. We are down a crew chief (John Medlen was moved over to the NAPA team) and I don't know whether that affected us last week in Norwalk or not, but we have three races to get back on track to make sure we continue moving forward.

"I have 100-percent confidence in (crew chief) Tommy DeLago and I know he's going to get it done for us, so I'm excited to get this Western Swing started."

-source: dsr

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Series NHRA
Drivers Matt Hagan , John Medlen