NHRA’s annual touchdown at fabulous Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park in Ohio produced more intense racing action…
In fuel FC class racing, Ron Capps continued his mid-season dominance with his fourth Funny Car win of 2016 at the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals. His DSR racing teammate Shawn Langdon scored in Top Fuel, while Jason Line (Pro Stock) and Eddie Krawiec (Pro Stock Motorcycle) also were winners of the 12th NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series events of the season.
Capps raced his NAPA Auto Parts Dodge Charger R/T to a winning pass of 3.956 seconds at 317.49 mph to the losing run of Courtney Force at 4.010 at 314.17. This is his third win in four races, he has a commanding 130 point lead over Force who is second and credits his Don Schumacher Racing team for the success.
“What Rahn Tobler (crew chief) is doing right now is hard work,” Capps said. “This guy has been working his tail off. It is big picture to him, he is not just a good crew chief, he is a good racer and I love that. When he is pointing at me in the windshield before a run, it gives me all the confidence in the world.”
With the win, the 49th of his career, he ties legendary racer Don Prudhomme for 11th on the all-time NHRA win list. Capps is a former driver of ‘The Snake’ and continues to admire the pioneer of the sport.
“He was my hero growing up,” Capps continued. “These wins happen and you are told you have tied someone you are completely enamored with growing up, so when you are mentioned like that it blows me away. It doesn’t seem possible, to be mentioned with someone like Snake is crazy.”
Langdon, a DSR teammate to Capps, piloted his Red Fuel dragster to his second consecutive win of the year when he bested J.R. Todd in the final. His winning run of 3.846 at 319.75 to the losing effort of Todd at 3.937 at 285.05 earned Langdon his 13th career Top Fuel victory. Langdon defeated Troy Buff, Antron Brown, Brittany Force as well as Todd for the win. Langdon had fortune on his side in the first round when Buff red-lighted giving Langdon the automatic win while his dragster lost traction early in the run.
“I think we are starting to see a little luck go our way, we really should have been out first round,” Langdon stated. “We were just fortunate Troy Buff redlit and we went back and looked at everything and couldn’t find out why it did what it did. We went back to what we did in qualifying on Saturday with a hot weather tune up. We were able to put together three good straight runs and felt like we had a very strong car today.”
In Pro Stock, Line faced his teammate and No. 1 qualifier Greg Anderson in the final. Line, in his Summit Racing Chevy Camaro, had the early advantage off the starting line and held off Anderson for his seventh win of the season. Line had a winning pass of 6.678 at 208.42 to Anderson’s trailing run of 6.717 at 208.36. Line defeated Curt Steinbach, Erica Enders-Stevens, and Vincent Nobile en route to his final round match up with Anderson.
“It was a hard today, it was very hot out there,” said Line. “We didn’t run as well as we would have liked today and there were cars that were very close to us. They are getting closer and to win at the Summit race, in a Summit Car, at a Summit track is a huge deal. Greg and I have been very fortunate to make that happen a bunch of times, it’s fun.”
Pro Stock Motorcycle racer Krawiec, won his third race of 2016 when he defeated his Screamin’ Eagle Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson teammate Andrew Hines in the final. Krawiec, who was also the No. 1 qualifier, had the winning run of 6.926 at 194.72 to defeat Hines who covered the distance at 6.937 at 193.29. His path to the win was eventful as he went off the end of the track into the sand trap following both his semifinal and final runs.
“We went back to the pit and had to take out 30 pounds of pea gravel,” said Krawiec. “We put new brake pads on it, checked the fluid, drained everything and made sure it was 100 percent. We stopped fine in the lanes and everything. I see my fourth round win light against my teammate and went ‘not again’. I pulled the clutch in and went in for a ride.”
The NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing will resume July 7-10 with the Route 66 NHRA Nationals at Route 66 Raceway, in Joliet, Ill.
Now Turbocharged — Glidden Wins!
Billy Glidden, 1st son to drag racing Hall of Fame racer Bob Glidden, raced to victory in the NHRA J&A Service Pro Mod Drag Racing Series portion of the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals. Pro Mod racing that weekend was presented by The Real Pro Mod Association and was the sixth of 10 Pro Mod events on the 2016 season.
Glidden won with a 5.893-second pass at 245.63 mph in his Precision Turbo 2014 Chevy Camaro when Bob Rahaim red-lit at the starting line in his late model TLC Waste Disposal Services Chevy Corvette in Sunday’s final.
“I didn’t feel any pressure,” said Glidden, “I felt a lot more pressure in the 70s, 80s, and 90s when dad was racing. Inside the car I really just don’t get nervous.”
Glidden qualified 10th and got past Von Smith and Mike Janis on Sunday en route to his first win of the season, second of his career. Glidden is sixth in the points standings.
Rahaim, who was the No. 1 qualifier, sprinted past Steve Whitelely and two-time world champion Rickie Smith in the quarterfinals and semifinals, respectively.
R. Smith is still first in the points standings. R. Smith is followed by defending world champion Troy Coughlin in second and Rahaim in third.
The NHRA J&A Service Pro Mod Drag Racing Series now takes a mid season tour break — but then continues on with the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals at Indy over the coming Labour Day weekend.
The Lucas Oil Lowdown
Reigning NHRA Lucas Oil World Champion Jonnie Lindberg, earned his second national event win this season, and 4th career win overall, in Top Alcohol Funny Car at the 10th annual Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals.
Lindberg, who is from Sweden, defeated Kris Hool, by being a tenth quicker combined with a hole shot at the start as both racers maintained a smooth run down the track. Lindberg ran a 5.546 second pass at 266.95 mph to Hool’s 5.646, 261.07. Lindberg lost earlier this season to Hool in the final round at Charlotte.
Rich Mc Phillips, Phoenixville, Pa., sailed to an easy win over Jeff Veale of Stoney Creek, Ontario. Veale was pulled off the starting line for a fuel leak as Mc Phillips made a clean pass in 5.434 seconds at 267.16 mph to take home his second national event Wally trophy this year, and his fifth career win.
Doug Doll Jr. faced off with Frank Cervelli in the final of Comp Eliminator taking the early lead and holding off Cervelli for the win. Doll clocked in at 7.474 seconds at 165.70 mph in his dragster to hold off the quicker Cervelli and his dragster at 6.853, 194.04. This is Doll’s eighth Wally, third in Competition Eliminator, with his most recent win in Epping three weeks ago.
This was the third event of four for School of Automotive Machinists & Technology Factory Stock Showdown. David Barton captured the win by completing an 8.410 second at 162.84 mph pass over Bruno Massel, Elmhurst, Ill. This is Barton’s third straight victory in the special event, which is designed to showcase the modern muscle cars from General Motors, Ford, and Dodge.
Gary Wojnowski, Jr. won for the home state in Top Sportsman presented by RacingRVs.com in his ’96 Monte Carlo. Wojnowski, ran down Larry Demers, Carroll, Ia., in 6.916 seconds at 194.94 mph. Lauren Freer, Mooresville, N.C., met up with Danny Nelson in the final round of Top Dragster presented by RacingRVs.com. Nelson had the starting line advantage, but Freer took home the NHRA Wally trophy.
Other racers visiting the winners circle: Rick Baehr had a solid holeshot win in Super Stock; Joe Santangelo won in Stock with a double breakout for his 13th Wally trophy; Don Higgins took home his second national event win in Super Comp; and Steve Collier won his third national event Wally in Super Gas.
Posted with files by Scott Smith and Mandi Ramirerz (NHRA Communications)
All photos by Steve Embling