NHRA New England Nationals
Event 13 of 24 (Epping)
New England Dragway
July 5-7, 2019
DSR Epping Elimination Highlights:
- Matt Hagan notches third consecutive NHRA New England Nationals Funny Car victory
- Hagan’s Epping win marked his second triumph of 2019 and 31st overall
- Antron Brown (Top Fuel) and Ron Capps (Funny Car) advanced to the quarterfinals, and each moved up one spot in the Countdown to the Championship point standings
Driver of the Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat
Qualified: No. 11 (4.117 E.T. at 310.55 MPH)
E1: 4.016 E.T. at 322.04 MPH defeated by Matt Hagan 3.958 E.T. at 326.24 MPH
Coming off two runner-up and two semifinal finishes over the last four events, Jack Beckman and the Infinite Hero Foundation team were eyeing the NHRA New England Nationals to score their first Wally trophy of 2019.
Beckman motored his Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat to the 11th qualifying spot with a run of 4.117 seconds on Friday. The 2012 Funny Car world champion desperately wanted to make his fourth qualifying pass Saturday afternoon and improve his starting position, but Mother Nature washed out the final session. So instead, Beckman found himself racing fellow DSR Hellcat pilot and eventual Epping Funny Car champion, Matt Hagan, in round one. Beckman got the starting line advantage and made his best run of the weekend, 4.016 seconds at 322.04 mph, but it wasn’t enough to knock out Hagan, whose 3.958 E.T. held up to be the quickest Funny Car pass of the meet.
“It was bound to bite us. We qualified in the bottom half of the field. I’m not making excuses, but that rained out Q4 may have hurt us more than any other team. We had tried some stuff and wanted to go back to our combo for that final session, but we didn’t get the opportunity. We got a big dog in the first round, and we go out there and lay down the quickest losing time of the round. That gets you nothing. It’s frustrating to end our hot streak, but I don’t know that we ended it, we just suffered an early-round exit today. We still know that we have a great Hellcat. The guys will take a week off, go back and freshen up our parts and we are going to come out swinging at Denver. And at Denver, you throw away all of the data. It’s the one race where they dust off that one notebook in the back of the cabinet. The crew chiefs hate it; the drivers love it. I’ve been successful there. I can’t think of a better place than that mountain to get our first win of the year, because I’m going to tell you, there is nothing that sets the tone for a championship run better than standing there on Sunday holding the trophy.”
NHRA Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship Standings:
1. Steve Torrence – 1278
2. Doug Kalitta – 799
3. Antron Brown – 781
4. Brittany Force- 777
5. Mike Salinas – 732
6. Clay Millican – 730
7. Leah Pritchett – 651
8. Richie Crampton – 612
9. Terry McMillen- 576
10. Scott Palmer – 563
1. Robert Hight – 1079
2. John Force – 903
3. Tommy Johnson Jr – 891
4. Ron Capps – 870
5. Jack Beckman – 851
6. J.R. Todd – 825
7. Matt Hagan – 770
7. Bob Tasca III – 770
9. Tim Wilkerson – 691
10. Shawn Langdon – 675
About Don Schumacher Racing:
Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) is the winningest team in NHRA Drag Racing history, having claimed more than 325 NHRA national event titles and 17 world championships since opening its doors in 1998.
Headquartered in Brownsburg, Indiana, DSR fields seven professional teams competing in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing series. In Top Fuel, the Matco Tools dragster driven by three-time world champion Antron Brown, the MOPAR/Pennzoil/Sparkling Ice dragster driven by Leah Pritchett and eight-time world champion Tony Schumacher’s machine. In Funny Car, the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat driven by 2016 world champion Ron Capps, the Mopar Express Lane/Pennzoil/Sandvik Coromant Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat piloted by Matt Hagan, and in Terry and Doug Chandler’s ‘giving cars,’ 2012 NHRA world champion Jack Beckman in the Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge, and Tommy Johnson Jr. behind the wheel of the Make-A-Wish Dodge.
DSR also campaigns two Factory Stock Showdown entries. The duo is piloted by Pritchett, the 2018 Factory Stock Showdown Series champion, and former Pro Stock racer Mark Pawuk.
Follow Don Schumacher Racing at Shoeracing.com, on Twitter and Instagram at @shoeracing and Facebook.com/shoeracing.