Old Bridge Township Raceway Park
SCHUMACHER ENDS UP THIRD
Schumacher secured the third starting position here Saturday during final qualifying for tomorrow's NHRA SuperNationals at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park. Schumacher posted the quickest time in the last two qualifying sessions and as a result collected his eighth straight top-five qualifying effort.
"What a terrific performance on the part of the U.S. Army team," said the Chicago-area resident. "We made two great runs today and I'm really pumped about race day. We're going to go after a trophy tomorrow."
The seven-time world champion, who is the winningest Top Fuel driver in NHRA history, has yet to take home a victory this year. He was a finalist earlier at both Gainesville (Fla.) Raceway and Atlanta Dragway in Commerce, Ga.
"It's time we put one in the bank," he said. "We have as good a car as anyone else, so why not us this weekend?"
Schumacher will square off with 14th-place qualifier, Dom Lagana, in the opening round of eliminations on Sunday beginning at 11 a.m. ET. The last time the two met was in the final round of last fall's Las Vegas race, which Schumacher won.
"They have a competitive team over there," offered Schumacher. "We'll have to keep our eye on the ball if we're going to advance."
Schumacher's U.S. Army Racing teammate, Antron Brown, also had a good Saturday moving from eighth to fifth in the order after a 3.821-second pass at 322.34 mph.
His lap was not without issue, however, as the left front tire on his Matco Tools/U.S. Army dragster went flat as he approached the finish line.
"Man, I was wondering what was going on," said the New Jersey native. "Fortunately, everything worked out and there were no problems. I'm happy we put up the kind of run we were looking for."
Brown will take on 12th-place qualifier, David Grubnic, in the first round of final eliminations. He beat Grubnic in the first round at Atlanta Dragway last month en route to his second win of the season.