POMONA, Calif. (Feb. 12, 2012) - It's a major accomplishment to win a Top Fuel title on the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series, but winning wasn't enough for Spencer Massey and the Prestone/FRAM team Sunday at the NHRA Winternationals.
Massey, who finished second in the points standings last year, set a national speed record en route to winning his seventh career title and fifth at Don Schumacher Racing since joining the team a year ago.
"Coming up a little short and ending up in second place last year made us that much more hungry and motivated to win a championship, so we focused this winter and acted like there wasn't an offseason," Massey said.
To win the title, Massey had to defeat DSR teammates Tony Schumacher in the semifinals and Antron Brown in the championship round at Auto Club Raceway.
His effort against Schumacher included the second quickest run in NHRA history at 3.745 seconds and a record speed of 328.62 mph.
"After the second round, we didn't have any computer data, and (crew chiefs) Phil (Shuler) and Todd (Okuhara) tuned that thing like it was a Top Fuel car from 1968. They looked at the plugs, looked at the bearings, and it went 3.74 at 328 mph.
"It shows that they know what it takes to get the car down the racetrack."
Massey and the team know it was only the first of 23 events in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series, but heading to Phoenix for next weekend's NHRA Arizona Nationals at Firebird International Raceway with the points lead has great meaning.
"It's awesome to start like this and have the No. 1 spot going into Phoenix. This is my life dream, and we're living it."
Spencer Massey, Prestone/FRAM dragster
Qualified: No. 2
Round 1: MASSEY (3.782, 325.53) def. Steve Faria (5.831, 114.66)
Round 2: MASSEY (3.776, 326.79) def. Clay Millican (3.847, 326.79)
Round 3 (semifinals): MASSEY (3.745, 328.62*) def. Tony Schumacher (3.790, 324.83)
*NHRA NATIONAL RECORD
Round 4 (final): MASSEY (3.750, 325.77) def. Antron Brown (3.794, 320.43)
For daily DSR updates during Sunday's eliminations follow DSR on Facebook at www.facebook.com/shoeracing and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/shoeracing.
FRAM Group LLC has its headquarters in Perrysburg, Ohio. Its leading automotive care products include FRAM® oil, air, transmission and fuel filters; Autolite® spark plugs and ignition wire sets; Prestone® antifreeze/coolant and car care products; and Holts® car care. It maintains R&D capabilities in the United States and Europe and has a manufacturing footprint in 10 countries worldwide.
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 174 NHRA national event titles and nine world championships.
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