Sunday, August 21, 2016

DSR: Beckman ready to return to Indianapolis for U.S. Nationals after early round exit for Infinite Hero Dodge team Sunday at Brainerd

BRAINERD, Minn. (Aug. 21, 2016) - Jack Beckman and the Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger R/T team, sponsored by Terry Chandler, didn't look like a team that was lost in the second round Sunday afternoon at the 35th annual NHRA Nationals at Brainerd International Raceway.

Beckman qualified No. 4 with his 3.859-second pass at 308.85 mph in his third qualifying session.  In the opening round of competition, the Infinite Hero team led by crew chief Jimmy Prock with assistants John Medlen and Chris Cunningham ran a 3.859 at 330.15 to beat Cruz Pedregon.

The team moved into round two where they were matched against Don Schumacher Racing teammate Ron Capps. Beckman's car didn't make a full pass and he coasted to a 4.087 at 238.85 mph and the win went to Capps' 3.909 at 305.56 mph.

"It's interesting because we just lost second round. We're very frustrated and we're in here doing the interview and everyone is very upbeat because we have a team and a car that can win a lot of races," Beckman said of his team.

Beckman says his team has an optimistic attitude heading into the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing series Countdown to the Championship because they know when the points standings are reset after the U.S. Nationals near Indianapolis, that the big hitters come to play.

"Look what (Del Worsham's) team did last year. They had a similar season to ours this year but gave notice they'd be tough then they came alive in the Countdown," Beckman said of Worsham who won the Funny Car world title last year.

"We're not doing this intentionally. We're not saving all our wins for later in the year but we're certainly capable of running off a streak of wins. It was an amazing weekend, performance wise. We just got bit in the second round. We don't know if we pushed too hard or just had an issue in the bellhousing," Beckman said.

Next week the Mello Yello series off but DSR and other top teams will at  Lucas Oil Raceway near Indianapolis before the prestigious U.S. Nationals.

"I'll be home for two days. I'll mow the lawn; I'll spend time with the kids. I'll head back out to Indy. We'll test for a day or two. Then fly back home for a few days then back out to Indy for the race."

Beckman and the Infinite Hero Foundation team not only took home the win at Indy but also the Traxxas Nitro Shootout race last year.
This year, they are looking to repeat both titles.

"We still have the Traxxas deal. We're still looking for the fan vote in that. There's a lot of things on the table for us from here to the end of the year. I think it's right that we're upbeat. Yeah, we're frustrated but we know what we're capable of."
Photo Credit: Auto Imagery
FUNNY CAR
Winner: Del Worsham (Kalitta Motorsports)
No. 1 qualifier: Matt Hagan (Don Schumacher Racing), 3.822 sec.-world record, 333.02-track record

JACK BECKMAN, Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 4
SUNDAY CHAMPIONSHIP ELIMINATIONS
First round: BECKMAN (3.859 sec., 330.15) def. Cruz Pedregon (4.838, 163.45)
Second round: Ron Capps (3.909, 305.56) def. BECKMAN (4.087, 238.85)
QUALIFYING
FRIDAY: 3.917 sec., 326.24 mph, (Session 1); 3.901, 295.14, (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 3.859, 308.85, (Session 3); 9.001, 63.29, (Session 4)


About Infinite Hero Foundation
A 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, Infinite Hero Foundation combats the most difficult front line issues - mental and physical - facing returning military heroes and their families.  The Foundation funds programs that drive innovation and the accessibility of effective treatments for military heroes and their families dealing with service-related mental and physical injuries.  For more information, visit: www.infinitehero.org.

About Don Schumacher Racing
Don Schumacher Racing, headquartered in Brownsburg, Ind., fields seven professional NHRA teams. In Top Fuel, the U.S. Army dragster driven by eight-time world champion Tony Schumacher, the Matco Tools dragster driven by two-time world champion Antron Brown and the Sandvik Coromant/Red Fuel Powered by Schumacher dragster driven by Shawn Langdon and in Funny Car, 2011 and 2014 world champion Matt Hagan in the Mopar Express Lane/Rocky Boots 2015 Dodge Charger R/T, 2012 NHRA world champion Jack Beckman in the Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge, the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge of Ron Capps and the Make-A-Wish Dodge driven by Tommy Johnson Jr.

DSR has won 283 NHRA national event titles and 14 world championships.
Follow Don Schumacher Racing at ShoeRacing.com, on Twitter at @shoeracing and Facebook.com/shoeracing.




FULL ARTICLE

Saturday, August 20, 2016

DSR: Beckman comes close to career best, possibly record run, with Infinite Hero Dodge on cool, quick Saturday at Brainerd

BRAINERD, Minn. (Aug. 20, 2016) - The Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger R/T, sponsored by Terry Chandler and piloted by Jack Beckman, was on its way to a career best elapsed time.

Unfortunately, they came up just five-thousandths of a second short during the third round of qualifying at Brainerd International Raceway at the 35th annual NHRA Nationals in northern Minnesota.

Possibly the most impressive part of Beckman's 3.859-second lap at 308.85 mph was that the car didn't make a full pass down the racetrack.

"We don't want to push it too hard so what happens when you're that quick early, we hit our REV limiter sooner and it takes a bunch of timing out. The motor is not happy and it drops a cylinder and eats up the blower belt. But otherwise, oh my gosh, what that could have been."

After scattered showers throughout the afternoon, the third and fourth sessions were delayed on Saturday.

"The one thing that is predictable about Brainerd is that nothing is predictable about Brainerd. It's that one track that we go to in August and it's either going to be 100 degrees or it's going to be crisp cool air.

"Then you get these rain showers that are in and out all day long. It's very odd, the way we get into our zone and go up there, and you have to turn the car right around and go back to the pits because there's a rain delay.

"But it's the same for everybody. Sometimes, it's in the middle of the session sometimes it's at the end of the session.

"We were on an absolutely monster pass third qualifying run and it dropped a cylinder and the blower belt came off and we coasted 170 feet and almost ran our career best ET (elapsed time). The thing really wanted to lay down something close to the national record.

"Then our teammate goes out and gets the national record on Q4 and we missed the tune up a little bit," Beckman said of his Don Schumacher Racing teammate Matt Hagan who reset the national record at 3.822.

"We're No. 4 so we've got lane choice," Beckman said. He will race Cruz Pedregon on Sunday in opening round of eliminations.

"It's probably going to be different conditions tomorrow. It's not going to be warm but it'll be sunnier than it was today. The racetrack will have some more heat in it and I think we have pretty good data to ran in it. I'm really looking forward to racing this."

BRAINERD FUNNY CAR
No. 1 qualifier: Matt Hagan (Don Schumacher Racing) 3.822 sec.-world record, 333.02 mph-track record

JACK BECKMAN, Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 4
SUNDAY CHAMPIONSHIP ELIMINATIONS
First round: Cruz Pedregon
QUALIFYING
FRIDAY: 3.917 sec., 326.24 mph, (Session 1); 3.901, 295.14 (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 3.859, 308.85 mph, (Session 3); 9.001, 63.29 (Session 4)

FULL ARTICLE

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

DSR: Beckman, Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge enter this weekend's Mello Yello event in Brainerd going for second victory of the year

BROWNSBURG, Ind. (Aug. 17, 2016) - In 2015, Jack Beckman and the Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charge R/T team, funded by Terry Chandler, changed the performance of the NHRA Funny Car.

The performance over the last year has skyrocketed and is due in part to Beckman's crew chief Jimmy Prock and assistants John Medlen and Chris Cunningham.

This weekend, the team travels to Minnesota for the 35th annual NHRA Nationals at Brainerd. At the event last year, Beckman was the No. 1 qualifier with a stellar pass of 3.901 seconds at 325.69 mph.

A large part of the record breaking performances was due to the laid back style of headers that Beckman started running in Denver last year and many teams have followed its lead.

"Last year Brainerd was the first track on tour to see a Funny Car run in the 3.80s," Beckman said.

"Then last weekend in Seattle, you could have run in the 3.80s and not had lane choice first round. Now that we're cycling back to all the tracks where they've already seen laid back headers with the Funny Car, I thought we'd only see three or four hundredths of a second shaved off the track ET (elapsed time) record but Del (Worsham, Kalitta Motorsports) knocked eight hundredths off Seattle's record that at the time was the quickest round in history."

Last weekend in Seattle, Beckman and the Infinite Hero posted career bests a run in 3.854 seconds - fourth quickest in history - and at an astounding 334.15 mph, the second fastest ever.

Beckman says he is excited about the performance of the Funny Car field and where the sport is headed.

"It's a wonderful show for the fans. Everybody is getting their money's worth. As a driver, I love it because you have to hold on - these things are light in the frontend and hard to drive. As I fan, I just love seeing those big numbers pop up," Beckman said.

"I can't even make any performance predictions. The crew chiefs and Mopar engineering have just blown me away with what they've been able to achieve in the performance game."

After Seattle, NHRA teams had a weekend off. But Beckman and his family did what racers do - they went to a drag race.

"I got to drive a friend's NHRA Top Dragster in the bracket race in Boise (Idaho). I think we made about 17 to 18 runs over the course of the weekend and also did some announcing. It was just a fun getaway.

"It might sound odd that a getaway isn't getting away from a dragstrip, but Sportsman racing is completely different than driving a nitro Funny Car. It's been a good time to unwind.

"I'll hop on an airplane and go home, get everything taken care of there: mow the grass, pack my bags, hop back on the airplane and go to Brainerd. I just can't think of a better way to get my head back in the game than racing. I think now we have the car that we've been wanting.

"The downside is that we've tweaked both of our cars and the DSR chassis shop (fabrication shop) has had to work overtime to get us fresh pipe on this. I don't think that's going to do anything but make us better when we go to Brainerd."
Photo Credit: Auto Imagery

JACK BECKMAN: Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T
Last event: Seattle (Aug. 5, 2016): Qualified No. 4, lost in second round to Matt Hagan
A year ago at Brainerd: Qualified No. 1, lost in semifinals to Tommy Johnson Jr.
Career at Brainerd: Wins 0; Runner-ups 2 (2008, 2010); Poles 3 (2012-13, 2015)
Pts Events Wins Rup Semi Qtr 1st rd Poles DNQ W/L
2016 3rd 16 1 3 2 10 3 4 0 24-15
CAREER 244 23 25 43 69 76 19 7 321-214
Best Time, Speed: 3.854 sec. (2016, Seattle); 334.15 mph (Seattle, 2016)

NHRA MELLO YELLO DRAG RACING SERIES FUNNY CAR STANDINGS
Through 16 of 24 events; Seattle Funny Car finals to be held at Brainerd; DSR DRIVERS IN CAPS
1. RON CAPPS (4 or 5) 1313 or 1333
2. Courtney Force (1) 1124
3. JACK BECKMAN (1) 1088
4. Del Worsham (0 or 1) 1070 or 1090
5. MATT HAGAN (2) 1011
7. Robert Hight (1) 988
6. John Force (2) 970
8. TOMMY JOHNSON JR. (1) 940
9. Tim Wilkerson (2) 862
10. Alexis DeJoria (1) 765

FULL ARTICLE

Sunday, August 7, 2016

DSR: Quarterfinal finish in NHRA Northwest Nationals near Seattle disappoints Infinite Hero Dodge Funny Car driver Beckman

SEATTLE (Aug. 7, 2016) - Any loss is hard on a driver but a second-round loss on Sunday at the 29th annual Protect the Harvest NHRA Nationals was especially hard for Jack Beckman.

The reason of the loss was a redlight start by Beckman against his Don Schumacher Racing teammate, Matt Hagan.

"It's bitterly disappointing. You look at reasons why you lose: clutch application, horsepower, track conditions. This was 100 percent driver error," Beckman said.

The loss was also hard because of how well the Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger R/T team, funded by Terry Chandler, and tuned by Jimmy Prock with assistants John Medlen and Chris Cunningham, ran this weekend. During qualifying, Beckman clocked four solid passes: 3.925 seconds, 3.918, 3.861 and 3.879.

He was seeded in the No. 4 spot and faced Gary Densham on Sunday for eliminations. Beckman ran a stellar 3.854 at a speed of 334.15 mph.

He then was matched against Hagan where he was knocked out of competition because of his early departure.

"There's no excuse, there's no way to spin it. I absolutely made a mistake up there.

"There's a variance on the Christmas tree from the time we stage till the time that it activates the ambers and we got a long one up there.

"But it doesn't matter. Our job is to react when the tree comes on," Beckman said.

"I started squeezing the throttle and the car started rolling. Then when I floored the throttle, it was already rolling through the starting line and we got a red light.

"The real frustrating part is we had a car good enough to win the race and you just don't want to let the guys down. I love how supportive they are. This is a tough one for me. I just need to get my act together when we roll into Brainerd. If we leave there with a trophy, everyone is going to have their spirits a little bit higher."

After the annual three-week race Western Swing, the Infinite Hero Foundation team will return to the DSR shop near Indianapolis before returning to the race in two weeks at Brainerd, Minn. for the 35th annual NHRA Nationals and the 17th stop of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing series circuit.

"This is a tough weekend as a driver but the Infinite Hero team ain't done winning this year."

FULL ARTICLE

Saturday, August 6, 2016

DSR: Beckman, Infinite Hero team will start Sunday’s Northwest Nationals from fourth starting spot at Pacific Raceways near Seattle

SEATTLE (Aug. 6, 2016) – Jack Beckman and the Infinite Hero Foundation team, sponsored by Terry Chandler, are looking for some redemption this year at the 29th annual Protect the Harvest NHRA Northwest Nationals at Pacific Raceways near Seattle. (Photo Credit: Auto Imagery)

Last year at this race Beckman and his team, led by crew chief Jimmy Prock with assistants John Medlen and Chris Cunningham, were the No. 1 qualifier and were on the verge of sweeping the Western Swing with their previous wins in Denver and Sonoma.

Their sweep was ended in the semifinals when they lost to Don Schumacher Racing teammate, Tommy Johnson Jr.

This year is a different story.“I think the Infinite Hero guys are looking for a little redemption on the West Coast,” Beckman said.

Beckman is the No. 4 qualifier with his best qualifying pass coming in the third session on a cool, overcast Saturday afternoon near Seattle when he clocked a 3.861-second run at 332.26 mph.

“It’s interesting. We went quicker than we’ve ever run before, quicker than the national record, and we’re second quickest in the pair we were in, and then another car surpassed it,” Beckman said.

The other car was Del Worsham of Kalitta Motorsports who set a national record at 3.832.

The performance of the Funny Car category took off last year when Beckman and his Infinite Hero Foundation team went on their hot streak that started at Denver. They qualified No. 1 at four straight events: Sonoma, Seattle, Brainerd and Indianapolis.

A lot of their success is due in part to the laid-back style of exhaust headers that create downforce.

“Now we’re getting back to the tracks that we have already ran with swept back headers so you don’t expect to see the big jumps in performance like we saw last year.

Beckman is excited about the performance of the Funny Car field and where the sport is headed.

“It’s amazing. It’s a wonderful show for the fans. Everybody is getting their money’s worth. As a driver, I love it because these things are light in the frontend and hard to drive. As fan, I just love seeing those big numbers pop up.”
PHOTO CREDIT: Auto Imagery


FULL ARTICLE

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

DSR: Beckman, Infinite Hero team look for redemption at Pacific Raceways near Seattle after two early round loses on NHRA Western Swing

KENT, Wash. (Aug. 3, 2016) - After two early round exits, Jack Beckman and his Infinite Hero Foundation team are ready for a little revenge this weekend near Seattle at the 29th annual NHRA Northwest Nationals at Pacific Raceways.

Last weekend in the NHRA Sonoma Nationals, Beckman was eliminated in the second round of competition and two weeks ago, he lost in the first round at Denver to start the annual Western Swing.

Last year on the Swing, Beckman went 10-1 in three races with the Infinite Hero Dodge funded by Terry Chandler. Their winning streak ended in Seattle when Beckman's Don Schumacher Racing teammate, Tommy Johnson Jr., beat him in the semifinals.

"I think the Infinite Hero guys are looking for a little redemption on the West Coast," said Beckman of his Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger R/T team led by crew chief Jimmy Prock with assistants John Medlen and Chris Cunningham.

"At this point last year of the Western Swing, we were 8-0. Right now, we're 1-2."

Last season, the Infinite Hero team won a seven event titles. This year has been more of a struggle.

"It's tough," Beckman said. "I don't think I ever drove better than last year. At times when the car wasn't perfect, I think I was able to pedal or leave quick enough to get the win light.

"I think sometimes it's easy to perform well when you feel like you're sitting on the best horse out there. Sometimes that can work back to the driving as well. I have to be very self-analytical on this and make sure I'm doing everything I can on this because still lots of these races that come down to a few thousandths at the finish line.
PHOTO CREDIT: AutoImagery
"You don't want to feel like as a driver you left anything on the table," Beckman said.

Needless to say, he and his team are ready to get back on the track to redeem themselves.

"We had to switch cars again after Denver. We wheel stood twice in qualifying in Denver. We ran that car in eliminations and it bent a couple tubes.

"So we unloaded 'Old Reliable,' for Sonoma and we're just trying to figure out what it wants right now. It would be nice to stick to the same chassis for the rest of the year just so you could accumulate data."

Aside from getting back to the track to bring home a title, Beckman is looking forward to racing in Seattle for another very important reason.
This week at Pacific Raceways, there will be a memorial service for Mark Lyle, the NHRA official starter who tragically lost his life earlier this year in March.

"Thursday night at the track, we're going to do a tribute for Mark Lyle. It's his home track, where he got his start with the NHRA.
"I think that's a fitting place to gather with his family and friends, to officially say goodbye to a great guy."

For additional information, please visit Don Schumacher Racing.

Sunday, July 31, 2016

DSR: Beckman, Infinite Hero Foundation falls short in Sonoma Nationals, ready to return to record-making form next weekend at Seattle

SONOMA, Calif. (July 31, 2016) - Jack Beckman and his Infinite Hero Foundation team came up short of defending their event title at Sonoma Raceway on Sunday when they were eliminated during the second round of competition.

"We did everything we needed to do for a team that didn't qualify in the top half of the ladder," Beckman said of the Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T funded by Terry Chandler.

Beckman qualified No. 9 with a pass of 3.920 seconds at 323.27 mph.

In the first round, Beckman's 3.921-second pass at 323.27 mph got past teammate Tommy Johnson Jr. and the Make-A-Wish team, also funded by Terry Chandler.

Then during the second round, Beckman's car went up in tire smoke and the win went to Del Worsham of Kalitta Motorsports.

 "We came out and we pushed the track hard. We beat our teammate (Johnson) in a side-by-side 3-second run. We took lane choice into the second round. And it dropped a cylinder right at the step - that made it shake and smoke the tires."

 "You're just not going to win without running low 3.90s, even in the heat of the day anymore. One of the tough parts about that is when the track heats up and you pull the tune-up back just a bit it's hard to trying to keep all eight holes (cylinders) lit.

"It's frustrating. We're hanging tight in the points. But man, we need to be moving up and we're running out of time to do that before we go into the Countdown (to the Championship) for the reset of points after Labor Day.

Despite his early exit Sunday, Beckman remains third in the Funny Car points standings.

"Right now, in the regular season, it's just trophies. All you're after is just trophies," Beckman said.

"Once you go into the Countdown, the reality is, round wins are what's most important. Yes, getting a trophy gets you the most round wins but, you could runner-up at every race of the Countdown and probably win the Championship.

"It's not that we need to be any more motivated or determined but I think when we roll into Seattle, we'll have burned up a lot of notepads and calculator keys trying to figure out exactly what this car wants," Beckman said.

Next weekend is the final race of the three-race Western Swing.

"You just want to be standing there at the end of the day Sunday and have the fans say, 'Wow! What a perfect day!' So that's our goal in Seattle - perfect Sunday."

FUNNY CAR
Winner: John Force (John Force Racing)
No. 1 qualifier: Del Worsham (Kalitta Motorsports), 3.868 sec.-track record, 327.43 mph

JACK BECKMAN, Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 9
SUNDAY CHAMPIONSHIP ELIMINATIONS
First round: BECKMAN (3.921 sec., 323.27 mph) def. Tommy Johnson Jr. (3.988, 296.76)
Second round: Del Worsham (3.958, 322.04) def. BECKMAN (7.608, 86.88)
QUALIFYING
FRIDAY: 3.933 sec., 322.34 mph, (Session 1); 4.389, 195.17, (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 4.120, 242.71, (Session 3); 3.920, 323.27, (Session 4)

FULL ARTICLE

Saturday, July 30, 2016

DSR: Beckman, Infinite Hero Dodge look to defend Sonoma title but have to face DSR teammate in Sunday’s opening round

SOMONA, Calif. (July 30, 2016) - Jack Beckman and his Infinite Hero Foundation team strive to repeat their victory in last year's Sonoma NHRA Nationals. But, his match-up will play out a little differently than it did last year.

In 2015, Beckman met his Don Schumacher Racing teammate Tommy Johnson Jr. in the final round. This year at the 29th annual Sonoma NHRA Nationals, the two are meeting in the opening round.

"I hate to race a teammate first round," Beckman said. "And I hate to race another Terry Chandler car first round."

Chandler funds the Infinite Hero Foundation and Make-A-Wish teams.

"I think we know the direction we need to go. And no holding back for tomorrow," Beckman said.

"We have to give it 100 percent against that Make-A-Wish car and they'll do the same against us and it'll definitely be interesting for the fans."

Not only is the match-up different than last year but the elapsed times of the Funny Car field is much different.

In 2015, Beckman qualified No. 1 when he ran a 3.921-second lap at 323.43 mph, which was a national record. This year, his best qualifying effort came in the final qualifying session when he ran a 3.920 and he finished in the No. 9 spot.

"Last year, we come here and ran a 3.92 (3.921), and we're the heroes of the universe. We come here this year and run a 3.92 with a zero and we won't even have lane choice going into tomorrow.

"My, what a difference a year has made in Funny Car."

Beckman, along with his crew chief Jimmy Prock with assistants John Medlen and Chris Cunningham, brought home seven event titles last year. This season their first title came a few weeks ago near Chicago but they are third in the standings.

Sonoma is the second stop of the annual the three-race Western Swing that concludes next weekend near Seattle.

Beckman and Johnson will faceoff tomorrow during round one of eliminations which will air live on FOX Network at 4 p.m. ET.



FUNNY CAR
No. 1 qualifier: Del Worsham (Kalitta Motorsports), 3.868 sec.-track record, 327.43 mph

JACK BECKMAN, Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 9
SUNDAY CHAMPIONSHIP ELIMINATIONS
First round: Tommy Johnson Jr.

QUALIFYING
FRIDAY: 3.933 sec., 322.34 mph, (Session 1); 4.389, 195.17, (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 4.120, 242.71, (Session 3); 3.920, 323.27, (Session 4)

About Infinite Hero Foundation
A 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, Infinite Hero Foundation combats the most difficult front line issues - mental and physical - facing returning military heroes and their families.  The Foundation funds programs that drive innovation and the accessibility of effective treatments for military heroes and their families dealing with service-related mental and physical injuries.  For more information, visit: www.infinitehero.org.

About Don Schumacher Racing
Don Schumacher Racing, headquartered in Brownsburg, Ind., fields seven professional NHRA teams. In Top Fuel, the U.S. Army dragster driven by eight-time world champion Tony Schumacher, the Matco Tools dragster driven by two-time world champion Antron Brown and the Sandvik Coromant/Red Fuel Powered by Schumacher dragster driven by Shawn Langdon and in Funny Car, 2011 and 2014 world champion Matt Hagan in the Mopar Express Lane/Rocky Boots 2015 Dodge Charger R/T, 2012 NHRA world champion Jack Beckman in the Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge, the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge of Ron Capps and the Make-A-Wish Dodge driven by Tommy Johnson Jr.DSR has won 281 NHRA national event titles and 14 world championships.
Follow Don Schumacher Racing at ShoeRacing.com, on Twitter at @shoeracing and Facebook.com/shoeracing.

For additional information, please visit Don Schumacher Racing.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

DSR: First-round loss costly for Beckman, Infinite Hero Dodge team but visit with American heroes provides longer lasting memories

BROWNSBURG, Ind. (July 27, 2016) - It might have been a lost opportunity, but it wasn't a lost weekend for Jack Beckman at the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals near Denver.

Beckman was disappointed he was sidelined in the opening round of eliminations Sunday to Don Schumacher Racing teammate Ron Capps by a narrow margin. Beckman and the Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car team started the day ranked second to Capps in Mello Yello Drag Racing Series points and trailed by 126.

It was the scenario he and crew chief Jimmy Prock wanted, a chance to take a big chunk out of Capps' lead but Beckman came up short with a 4.078-second run to Capps' 4.047. Capps lost in the next round and extended the margin over Beckman to 144. Courtney Force advanced to the final round and moved around Beckman in the standings.

"That was a big one for us," said Beckman, who had won the previous event near Chicago. "We got our early round match-up with (Capps) and we lost. That's huge. It was a bitter disappointment; those are the ones that feel like a punch in the gut. You have a scenario line up for you, and we did. And you have to capitalize, and we didn't.

"In this sport, you have to be good enough. Sometimes you don't even have to be good, you have to be good enough. And we weren't good enough."

But that was in the mile-high altitude of Denver and this weekend Beckman gets back to sea level and a chance to defend the event title he won a year ago at Sonoma Raceway near San Francisco. He also won the pole for that race.

The Denver weekend, however, is one of Beckman's most memorable.

The Infinite Hero Fund, which provides grants to assist veterans who return from war with physical or psychological injuries, hosted three American heroes: J.R. Martinez and identical twins Morgan and Marcus Luttrell, each of whom are retired Navy SEALs. It was only a few days after Marcus, author of the book "Lone Survivor" that recounts his harrowing experience during a 2005 military operation in Afghanistan, shared an inspirational message to the Republican National Convention in Cleveland.

"I got to hang out with J.R. when we did the Mopar autograph signing together," said Beckman, whose Infinite Hero team is funded by Terry Chandler.

"It's interesting to see people and the way they deal with life-changing events. That guy is so inspirational.

"And then I'm strapped in to our racecar towing up to the starting line and the Luttrell brothers point into me and give the thumbs up.

"And I think, OK, this is as close to combat as we're going to get in the civilian sector - strapped into a nitro Funny Car going out there to do battle on the track. But those are guys who have REALLY gone into combat on a regular basis."

JACK BECKMAN: Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T
Last event Denver, July 22-24: Qualified No. 6, lost in first round to Ron Capps
A year ago at Sonoma: Qualified No. 1, won in championship round over Tommy Johnson Jr.
Career at Sonoma: Wins 1; Runner-ups 1 (2010); Poles 2 (2010)

         Pts  Events  Wins  Rup  Semi Qtr  1st rd Poles DNQ   W/L
2016 3rd     14         1         3        2      5       3          4       0      22-13
CAREER    242       23      25      43     68     76       19      7  319-212          
Best Time, Speed: 3.866 sec. (2016, Topeka); 332.59 mph (2016, Topeka)



FULL ARTICLE

Sunday, July 24, 2016

DSR: Beckman loses big opportunity in first round to gain ground on DSR teammate in Mopar Mile-High Nationals, drops to third

DENVER (July 24, 2016) - Jack Beckman knows his Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T team lost a great opportunity Sunday in the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals in the first round.

Beckman was paired with Don Schumacher Racing teammate Ron Capps to open the event at Bandimere Speedway near Denver and it provided an opportunity for him to take a big chunk out of Capps' lead over him in the Mello Yello Drag Racing Series points standings.

Beckman has added incentive to be leading the points before the U.S. Nationals over Labor Day Weekend to qualify for the $100,000 Traxxas Nitro Shootout all-star event when the field will include eight drivers.

The first seven were for the first seven event winners this year. Beckman, who won two weeks ago, was not among the first seven. There are two other ways to qualify; one is by a fan vote and the other would be if the points leader after 17 races is not qualified.

"That was a big one for us," Beckman said. "In the big scope of the points, and trying to get in the (Shootout) without relying on the fan vote, we needed an early round match-up with the NAPA car, and we needed to win the race.

"And we got our early round match-up with the NAPA car and we lost the round. That's huge. Our car dropped a cylinder one second into the run, and sometimes that's all it takes. It was a close race. It was a bitter disappointment there - those are the ones that feel like a punch in the gut. You have scenarios to line up for you, and we did. And you have to capitalize, and we didn't.

"This sport, you have to be good enough. Sometimes you don't even have to be good, you have to be good enough. And we weren't good enough."

Beckman shot up to No. 6 in qualifying on his last run Saturday night of 3.985 seconds at 312.78, and Capps was seeded 11th, his worst of the year, to set the match-up.

Beckman and crew chief Jimmy Prock produced a solid time of 4.078 seconds at 301.47 mph but it wasn't enough to get past Capps' 4.047 at 316.45.

Capps, however, lost in the next round but extended his lead over Beckman to 144 points and when Courtney Force advanced to the final round she was able to move up to second and Beckman dropped to third with his Infinite Hero team funded by Terry Chandler.

It was an overall bad day for DSR Funny Cars as all four were eliminated before the semifinals. It was in stark contrast to the past couple months. The DSR teams had combined to win the previous seven event titles including the one two weeks at Chicago where Beckman left with the NHRA Wally trophy.

The following are Beckman's for DSR at Bandimere:

FUNNY CAR
Winner: John Force (John Force Racing)
No. 1 qualifier: Courtney Force (John Force Racing), 3.917 sec.-track record, 318.39 mph

JACK BECKMAN, Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 6
SUNDAY ELIMINATIONS
First round: Ron Capps (4.047 sec., 316.45 mph) def. BECKMAN (4.078, 301.47)
QUALIFYING
FRIDAY: 4.175 sec., 236.05 mph, (Session 1); 4.234, 220.37, (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 4.046, 313.58, (Session 3);  3.985, 312.78, (Session 4)



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