SCHUMACHER COLLECTS 100TH NHRA WIN FOR U.S. ARMY TOPEKA, Kan., May 23, 2010 - Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher pocketed the 100th NHRA win for his long-time sponsor - the U.S. Army - here Sunday in the O'Reilly Auto Parts Summer Nationals at...
SCHUMACHER COLLECTS 100TH NHRA WIN FOR U.S. ARMY
TOPEKA, Kan., May 23, 2010 - Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher pocketed the 100th NHRA win for his long-time sponsor - the U.S. Army - here Sunday in the O'Reilly Auto Parts Summer Nationals at Heartland Park Topeka.
Schumacher, who is the defending Top Fuel world champion, beat his Don Schumacher Racing teammate, Cory McClenathan, in the finals via a "holeshot." The Chicago-area resident was able to use a starting line advantage (.058-seconds to .074-seconds) to overcome a slower elapsed time.
"It was a great race, but what's even greater is being able to get the U.S. Army its 100th NHRA victory," said Schumacher. "We really wanted this one for our Army Strong Soldiers. We just love presenting trophies to our hard-working men and women."
While claiming his first career victory at Heartland Park Topeka, Schumacher also banked his 60th win carrying the colors of the U.S. Army on his championship-winning dragster. The other NHRA drivers to record wins for the U.S. Army over the years include Don "The Snake" Prudhomme (24 - Funny Cars), Angelle Sampey (10 - Pro Stock Motorcycles) and Antron Brown (six - Pro Stock Motorcycles).
"It's incredibly exciting to be a part of such a momentous occasion," added Schumacher. "It's quite clear to everyone how I feel about having the U.S. Army as my sponsor. I would not have anyone else on my car."
At this year's Mac Tools U.S. Nationals, Schumacher and the U.S. Army will celebrate 10 years together.
On the way to his 64th career win, Schumacher had to march through the likes of Dominick Lagana, Shawn Langdon and point leader Larry Dixon before taking out McClenathan.
"Trust me, that was a tough road," he said. "When you win of these things, you have definitely earned it. As they always are, the U.S. Army team was spot on today." Following his third win of the year, Schumacher moved into third-place in the standings and now trails second-place McClenathan by only 11 points and Dixon by 108 points. Brown, who drives the Matco Tools/U.S. Army Top Fuel dragster, fouled out with a red light in the quarterfinals against Dixon. He holds fifth-place in the standings.
"I did something I don't normally do - I was thinking about way too much at the starting line," said Brown. "You can't do that against anyone. I have to go up there every time and just do things naturally."
On the U.S. Army NASCAR Racing front, Ryan Newman, who drives the #39 Chevrolet for Stewart Haas Racing, finished 11th in Saturday night's non-points Sprint All-Star race at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway.
Schumacher and Brown will now enjoy the forthcoming Memorial Day weekend off before returning to the NHRA tour, June 3 -6, for the United Association Route 66 Nationals at Route 66 Raceway in Joliet, Ill.