Sonoma: Gary Scelzi preview

SCELZI'S SIGHTS SET ON SONOMA SUCCESS SONOMA, Calif. (July 22, 2008) - Fresno, Calif., native Gary Scelzi has his sights set on continuing success at Infineon Raceway at this weekend's FRAM-Autolite NHRA Nationals, the final leg of the ...

SCELZI'S SIGHTS SET ON SONOMA SUCCESS

SONOMA, Calif. (July 22, 2008) - Fresno, Calif., native Gary Scelzi has his sights set on continuing success at Infineon Raceway at this weekend's FRAM-Autolite NHRA Nationals, the final leg of the three-race NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series Western Swing (Denver, Seattle and Sonoma, Calif.).

The man who's won two Funny Car titles at this event (2003 and 2005), was No. 1 qualifier in Top Fuel in 2000 and who made history - after his '03 FC victory here - by becoming the only NHRA driver to have won in Top Fuel, Funny Car, Top Alcohol Dragster and Top Alcohol Funny Car, is ready to hoist the winner's trophy again.

"Wild Thing," as the driver of the Mopar/Oakley Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car is known in Fresno, is aiming for his third triumph here as well as a top-10 berth in the Countdown to the Championship, which begins for the top 10 in points following the U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis on Labor Day weekend.

He's close, but with only four races left before the Countdown kicks in, he'll have to move out of the 13th position and into the top 10 by making up a 58-point deficit.

"If there's any saving grace, if we're going to do anything, Infineon is going to be the place," said the four-time NHRA world champion who notched his first nitro Funny Car win in Sonoma. "I don't even want to think about not doing well here because everybody I know and everybody I've ever met is going to be here.

"It's fun having your friends and family supporting you at an event, but in one respect it's tough because if you don't get to spend time with everybody, sometimes they get upset. Hopefully, they'll understand if I can't get to them all.

"But it's all good. It's the West Coast, it's a place that I love, especially after Bruton Smith took over and cleaned up everything and made it really nice. You have the most beautiful mornings at Infineon Raceway. You get out of your Monaco motor coach and you have the cool ocean breeze, the overcast sky, and it's wonderful. The nights are beautiful, there's a nice breeze when the sun goes down, but it can be hell here too.

"We've run all aspects of the gamut here. We've won, we've lost, we've had everything. We just hope it's time to turn this thing around, get our first season victory and move up into the top 10."

-credit: dsr

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Series NHRA
Drivers Gary Scelzi