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American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Drag Racing Topics:  Tony Schumacher, Kragen O'Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Winternationals


U.S. Army Racing
February 14, 2010

POMONA, Calif., February 14 - U.S. Army Top Fuel driver Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher dropped a close semifinal round race to Larry Dixon here Sunday in the 50th annual Kragen O'Reilly Winternationals at Auto Club Raceway. Schumacher and Dixon actually posted identical elapsed times (3.836-seconds) and speeds (317.05 mph), but it was Dixon who grabbed a slight edge at the starting line which he ultimately used to gain the victory.

"That was an unbelievable race," said Schumacher who posted a .085-second reaction time to Dixon's .068-seconds. "That was two great teams putting on one hell of a show for the fans."

Going back to last year, this was the sixth meeting between Schumacher and his old U.S. Army crew chief (Alan Johnson) and team. Schumacher has four wins to his credit. "I'm confident we're going to be battling all season long," he added. "Again, that's what the fans want and that's really what we want."

On the way to his match up with Dixon, Schumacher had to survive races against Chris Karamesines and his Don Schumacher Racing teammate, Antron Brown, who pilots the Matco Tools/U.S. Army dragster.

"We really got lucky against Chris when he red lit and then again against Antron when he smoked the tires," said the Chicago-area resident. "But, that's part of the sport." Schumacher, who is the defending world champion, will leave Auto Club Raceway holding fourth-place in the standings. Brown is among three drivers tied for sixth. "Man, it's way too early to think about points," he said. "We'll just pack it up here and move on to Phoenix next weekend looking to get a win for our Army Strong Soldiers. Like it is with our brave men and women, failure is never an option with us."

The NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series heads for Firebird International Raceway, Feb. 19-21, for the Arizona Nationals. Schumacher is a three-time winner at Firebird.

See More NHRA Top Fuel News

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