Tony Schumacher’s Record Setting Run Earns Top Seed at Phoenix
CHANDLER, Arizona (February 24, 2018) – Tony Schumacher will start race day at the NHRA Arizona Nationals from the No. 1 spot on Sunday morning.
Cool temperatures and prime conditions gave way to another day of quick passes on Saturday at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park, but no one could top Schumacher and his U.S. Army Top Fuel team.
Schumacher earned his 85th No. 1 qualifier during Friday’s opening session, leading the 19-car Top Fuel field with his record setting 3.649-second at 336.57-mph run powered by Pennzoil.
“It’s been an excellent weekend for the U.S. Army Racing team,” said the five-time Phoenix winner.
“The U.S. Army car is extremely good and really consistent. Mike [Neff] is comfortable. He’s calm and cool. He knows what the car is doing and he’s enjoying it.”
Schumacher collected an impressive seven bonus points en route to his sixth Phoenix pole, including closing out qualifying with another session-best effort.
“Mike backed it down on that [last] run and it did what it was supposed to do. The conditions for the last round should have produced a better run than we put up last night, but the track is just extremely good and it’s eating the cars up. They are blowing through the clutch. You hit the gas and it just chews that clutch up. Teams were trying, but they weren’t getting it done. We didn’t make the run we wanted, but we made a run quicker than everyone else did. We earned the three points, kept the number one spot and it was a great couple of days of qualifying. Now, we turn our focus to winning the race. I think tomorrow is going to be a great day. I think the fans are going to be the biggest winners. I think they are going to see an awesome race. NHRA and Mello Yello are doing a great job. This is the greatest show on earth and I’m excited to out here surrounded by an incredible U.S. Army team, ready to go get that trophy.”
Qualified: No. 1 (E1 lane choice)
The Competition: No. 16 Greg Carrillo
Q1: 3.649 E.T. at 334.65 MPH (Three bonus points for quickest run of the session)
Q2: 3.667 E.T. at 336.57 MPH (One bonus point for third quickest run of the session)
Q3: 7.654 E.T. at 83.82 MPH
Q4: 3.686 E.T. at 332.34 MPH (Three bonus points for quickest run of the session)
Bonus Points: Seven
DSR Driver Information:
Driver of the Matco Tools/U.S. Army Top Fuel Dragster