ENNIS, Texas (Sept. 22, 2012) – It isn’t easy to accept missing a chance at winning $100,000, especially when you come up short by two-hundredths of a second.
So it was understandable when NAPA AUTO PARTS Funny Car driver Ron Capps was disappointed after barely losing in the finals of the inaugural Traxxas Nitro Shootout to John Force at the Texas Motorplex south of Dallas as part of the AAA Texas NHRA Fall Nationals.
“It is slightly disappointing,” Capps said of the Shootout loss. “It would have been a chapter to add when we look back on the season and be able to say we won the Traxxas Shootout.
Force, who has won 11 NHRA all-star titles, completed his run in 4.218 seconds at 296.57 to edge Capps’ 4.223 (296.50).
“I remember when I was a rookie in a Funny Car going against Force in big races like that. It was fun,” he said. “We were trying to be a little conservative and they stepped up. It’s good; big picture is we have a good Dodge for Sunday. But it would have been a nice bonus for the guys to win the Shootout.
“All in all, a good day.”
The team earned $15,000, but getting a third run on Saturday could prove to be priceless.
“Another run down the track under power gives (crew chief Rahn) Tobler and our NAPA guys more data. That’s so important out here in this heat, and Sunday will be just as hot,” Capps said.
“It was a confidence booster for me. I was disappointed with myself (Friday) night when I got out of the grove (on the track). We could have run better in the night session.
“I was real focused today doing the best I could. The (4.13) we ran in the first round (Saturday) was a great run in the type of heat we’ll also have to deal with on Sunday.”
Capps has bigger chips to cash on Sunday during championship eliminations of the Full Throttle Drag Racing Series event.
Capps along with Tobler and assistant crew chief John Collins have the NAPA team first in points among the 10 drivers contending in the six-race Countdown to the Championship.
Dallas marks the second stop of the Countdown and the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger R/T won last week’s final near Charlotte.
Capps will start eliminations in the No. 6 position where he will open against Blake Alexander in a car owned by Paul Smith. Last year at Dallas, the driver of the car was Capps’ brother, Jon Capps, and they met in the semifinals where they faced each other in a drag race for the first time. Ron Capps prevailed.
“You never take a Paul Smith car lightly,” Ron said. “That’s a tough car and that kid is hungry.
“We’ll just do what we’ve been doing and try to get some round wins.”
The following are Capps’ qualifying results and notes from the NHRA Fall Nationals near Dallas:
No. 1 Qualifier: Courtney Force 4.081 sec., 308.21 mph
Ron Capps, NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 6
Round 1 opponent: Blake Alexander
Session 1: 5.016 sec., 151.44 mph
Session 2: 4.172, 299.60
Session 3: 4.134, 295.01
Session 4: 4.201, 29126
Shootout final (does not count toward qualifying): John Force def. Ron Capps
SATURDAY’S TRAXXAS NITRO SHOOTOUT – FUNNY CAR
(DSR drivers in CAPS)
No. 1 seed RON CAPPS (4.134 sec., 295.01) def. No. 8 Courtney Force (4.1998, 294.95)
No. 7 Jeff Arend (4.783, 241.07) def. No. 2 Robert Hight (5.657, 132.32)
No. 6 John Force (4.294, 268.38) def. No. 3 JACK BECKMAN (4.483, 274.94)
No. 4. JOHNNY GRAY (4.254, 290.82) def. No. 5 Mike Neff (4.784, 175.89)
CAPPS (4.201, 291.26) def. GRAY (4.925, 169.44)
J. Force (4.234, 292.08) def. Arend (4.253, 281.19)
J. Force (4.218, 296.57) def. CAPPS (4.223, 296.50)
SUNDAY: High 94 degrees; 10 percent chance of rain
THIS WEEKEND’S EVENT SCHEDULE
Sunday: Championship eliminations, 11 a.m. (CT)
SUNDAY: Qualifying with Traxxas Shootout, 1 p.m.; Eliminations, 8:30 p.m. (all times ET)
About NAPA AUTO PARTS
NAPA was founded in 1925 to meet America’s growing need for a world-class auto parts distribution system. By providing excellent customer service for more than 80 years, NAPA has become the industry leader.
NAPA’s strength is unrivaled, with over 6,000 NAPA AUTO PARTS stores, 64 Distribution Centers, than 13,000 NAPA AutoCare, AutoCare Collision and Truck Service repair facilities, over 400,000 parts in inventory every day and the convenience of 24-hour shopping with NAPAonline. NAPA AUTO PARTS stores provide friendly, personalized service. Our highly trained and experienced professionals are here to help you get the job done. With our huge in-stock inventory, NAPA provides the parts you need when you need them.
For your automotive repair needs, NAPA AutoCare and AutoCare Collision and Truck Service Centers can handle everything from preventive maintenance to major repairs. Technicians at NAPA AutoCare Centers have access to the most extensive training in the automotive industry. Qualifying repairs are backed by the NAPA AutoCare “Peace of Mind” Warranty, providing our customers with 12-months/12,000 miles of worry-free protection on qualifying parts and labor. Wherever you may travel, our warranty is honored at all NAPA AutoCare Center locations across the country.
About Don Schumacher Racing
Don Schumacher Racing, headquartered in Brownsburg, Ind., consists of seven professional NHRA teams: in Top Fuel, the U.S. Army dragster driven by seven-time world champion Tony Schumacher, the FRAM/Prestone dragster of Spencer Massey and the Matco Tools dragster of Antron Brown; and in Funny Car, 2011 NHRA Funny Car champion Matt Hagan in the Aaron’s Dream Machine/Mopar Dodge Charger R/T, Valvoline NextGen Dodge piloted by Jack Beckman, the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge of Ron Capps and the Service Central Dodge of Johnny Gray. DSR has won 192 NHRA national event titles and nine world championships.
Follow Don Schumacher Racing at ShoeRacing.com, on Twitter at @shoeracing and Facebook.com/shoeracing.
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