U.S. Nationals Tuesday test notes 2006-08-22

SCHUMACHER, TONY PEDREGON QUICKEST AT MAC TOOLS U.S. NATIONALS TESTING CLERMONT, Ind. -- Tony Schumacher and Tony Pedregon posted the quickest runs in their respective categories Tuesday at O'Reilly Raceway Park at Indianapolis during testing...


CLERMONT, Ind. -- Tony Schumacher and Tony Pedregon posted the quickest runs in their respective categories Tuesday at O'Reilly Raceway Park at Indianapolis during testing for the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals, the world's most prestigious drag race.

Schumacher and Pedregon will be among drivers competing in the $2.6 million event, Aug. 30-Sept. 4 at the legendary multi-use motorsports facility. ESPN2 HD will provide more than 10 hours of coverage of the historic race.

Schumacher's U.S. Army dragster clocked the quickest Top Fuel run of the day, covering the quarter-mile distance in 4.504 seconds at 328.06 mph. Schumacher is a four-time winner of the U.S. Nationals and was runner-up to defending champ Larry Dixon last season.

"We got beat last year and we've won it a couple of times, but there is nothing like this place man," Schumacher said. " It brings back a lot of good memories for me because 10 years ago at this race I got my start (1996, runner-up to Cory McClenathan). I've been to the finals here six times so it's just something special for me at the Big Go. I'm looking forward to it. We have a great race team and a great race car, we're performing well at Indy and looking forward to getting back here next week."

Schumacher is currently second in the POWERade Series points chase, 136 points behind leader Doug Kalitta. Schumacher has been hot in the last six races, posting five consecutive final round appearances and two victories. At Memphis he lost to Kalitta in a heavyweight second round match. He is looking to continue his march to the top of the standings at ORP.

"I always say if you give Alan Johnson (crew chief) a number of runs at a race track its pretty much over for (the competition) and that is what we are doing," Schumacher said. "We're letting him get his handle on this race track, let me get a little practice on this track, Lanny (Miglizzi, track surface specialist) is getting a lot of looks at the track and evaluating it and try to tell us were we need to be and things seem to be working out real well."

Brandon Bernstein, also a top contender in the POWERade Series standings with three victories this season, posted the second-quickest run, a 4.533 at 329.34 in the Budweiser/Lucas Oil dragster. Rod Fuller, who was the No. 1 qualifier in Memphis and has two victories this season, was third in his David Powers Homes dragster, with a 4.536 at an unoffical track record speed of 329.75 mph. Defending winner Dixon was fourth with a 4.592 at 323.27 in the Miller Lite dragster.

Pedregon, who has never won the U.S. Nationals but has won the lucrative Skoal Showdown bonus event, powered his Q Racing Chevy Monte Carlo to the quickest Funny Car run, finishing in 4.747 seconds at 324.75 mph.

"We had great conditions today," Pedregon said. "I think what every team out here is trying to do is simulate the conditions that we are going to see on that Friday night session. We actually put a moderate tune up on it and we were pretty surprised it went that quick, but it goes to show you the surface is race ready and will be prepared every bit as good as it was tonight. I think the racers and fans will probably see some record runs for the weekend because we have the Friday night session and Saturday night, so I think this is a preview of what is to come."

Mike Ashley drove his Skull Gear Dodge Stratus to the second spot with a 4.792 at 323.12. Defending Funny Car world champion Gary Scelzi was third overall in his Mopar/Oakley Dodge Charger, posting a 4.839 at 320.97. Four-time U.S. Nationals winner John Force, who moved into the POWERade Series points lead for the first time this season with a victory Monday at Memphis Motorsports Park, was fourth in his Castrol GTX Ford Mustang with a 4.869 at 317.49.

David Howard had the quickest Pro Stock car, clocking a 6.719 at 204.60 in a Chevy Cobalt. Tommy Lee was second in his Slammers Ultimate Milk Cobalt with a 6.748 at 204.29. Three-time world champ Greg Anderson, who is going for his fourth consecutive U.S. Nationals victory, was fifth with a 6.775 at 204.57 in his Summit Racing Pontiac GTO.

Tom Bradford posted the quickest run among the five Pro Stock Motorcycle riders participating in the test session. Bradford rode his Hal's Speed Shop Buell to a performance of 7.103 at 187.34.

Mac Tools U.S. Nationals testing continues Wednesday at 10 a.m.

Below is a listing of each driver's best performance for the day:

Tony Schumacher, 4.504, 328.06
Brandon Bernstein, 4.533, 329.34
Rod Fuller, 4.536, 329.75
Larry Dixon, 4.592, 323.27
Melanie Troxel, 4.728, 266.48
Cory McClenathan, 4.786, 317.49
Hillary Will, 5.012, 205.94
Bruce Litton, 8.289, 102.88
Joe Hartley, 9.525, 94.81
David Grubnic, 9.973, 75.83

Tony Pedregon, Chevy Monte Carlo, 4.747, 324.75
Mike Ashley, Dodge Stratus, 4.792, 323.12
Gary Scelzi, Dodge Stratus, 4.839, 320.97
John Force, Ford Mustang, 4.869, 317.49
Johnny Gray, Monte Carlo, 4.895, 279.15
Ron Capps, Dodge Charger, 4.927, 258.71
Tommy Johnson Jr., Monte Carlo, 4.993, 256.21
Ashley Force, Mustang, 5.071, 267.00
Whit Bazemore, Charger, 5.156, 212.93
Phil Burkart, Monte Carlo, 5.321, 210.05
Scott Kalitta, Monte Carlo, 5.408, 198.03
Robert Hight, Mustang, 5.898, 161.46
Eric Medlen, Mustang, 6.178, 151.19
Cruz Pedregon, Monte Carlo, 6.705, 131.08
Del Worsham, Monte Carlo, 8.118, 99.36

Dave Howard, Chevy Cobalt, 6.719, 204.60
Tom Lee, Cobalt, 6.748, 204.29
Terry Adams, Dodge Stratus, 6.765, 203.98
Mark Pawuk, Pontiac GTO, 6.770, 203.92
Greg Anderson, GTO, 6.775, 204.57
Tommy Brown, GTO, 6.797, 202.82
Steve Schmidt, GTO, 6.835, 202.30
Jose Maldonado, GTO, 6.940, 196.62
Kevin Lawrence, Cobalt, 7.302, 145.17

Tom Bradford, Buell, 7.103, 187.34
Matt Guidera, Buell, 7.138, 184.93
Craig Treble, Suzuki, 7.152, 187.55
Wesley Wells, Suzuki, 7.192, 183.32
Geno Scali, Suzuki, 7.250, 183.69

-credit: nhra

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Bruce Litton , Larry Dixon , Mark Pawuk , Tony Pedregon , Del Worsham , Whit Bazemore , Ron Capps , John Force , Tony Schumacher , Gary Scelzi , Doug Kalitta , Greg Anderson , David Grubnic , Tommy Lee , Cruz Pedregon , Craig Treble , Cory McClenathan , Scott Kalitta , Geno Scali , Ashley Force , Phil Burkart , Melanie Troxel , Brandon Bernstein , Terry Adams , Johnny Gray , Steve Schmidt , Mike Ashley , Joe Hartley , Eric Medlen , Wesley Wells , David Powers , Robert Hight , Kevin Lawrence , Dave Howard , Rod Fuller , Matt Guidera , Tom Bradford , Hillary Will , Jose Maldonado , Tommy Johnson Jr.