Sunday, November 13, 2016

DSR: Beckman adds two more NHRA records to Infinite Hero resume but semifinals loss drops DSR Dodge to fifth in final standings

POMONA, Calif. (Nov. 13, 2016) - Jack Beckman and the Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T team led by crew chief Jimmy Prock and funded by Terry Chandler had a very good year.

But there was some disappointment Sunday in the season-finale of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season when Beckman lost in the semifinals to eventual event runner-up John Force, who was defeated by Don Schumacher Racing teammate Tommy Johnson Jr. for the NHRA Finals event title.

Beckman, the 2012 Funny Car world champion, had every reason to advance further after his Infinite Hero Dodge with crew chief Jimmy Prock closed qualifying Saturday with a track-record time of 3.825 seconds to secure the team's sixth No. 1 qualifying position of the season.

In addition to the elapsed time record, the Infinite Hero Dodge set the track speed record at 332.84 mph. In all, the team set four time and seven speed records in 24 Mello Yello events.

"We did some amazing things this year on the track and with the Infinite Hero Foundation for our veterans," Beckman said.

"I'm reflective on the year, and it's disappointing to not be able to close it out with a win. But I love this group of people I'm surrounded with. We've changed some lives for the better and we'll just continue moving forward.

"We wanted to have the trophy and that was a really important round against John Force. If we won that round, we would be no worse than third in the points. If we lost, and he moved around us and we dropped to fifth.

"But it was a top-5 finish and that is incredibly hard to do in a nitro car. I think at the outset of the year, we felt our chances were going to be a little bit better. Nobody is going to hang their heads on this."


Saturday, November 12, 2016

Drag racing legend 'Jungle Pam' guides Beckman to Finals pole as Infinite Hero Dodge enjoys second quickest Funny Car run ever

POMONA, Calif. (Nov. 12, 2016) - Jack Beckman enjoyed a historic day Saturday in the NHRA Finals at the L.A. County Fairgrounds.

It started with the first qualifying session when he invited "Jungle Pam" Hardy (formerly Liberman), a drag racing icon,  to guide him back to the starting line after his burnouts.

Then he ended the day with the second quickest run ever in a Funny Car when crew chief Jimmy Prock with assistants John Medlen and Chris Cunningham and the Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T team funded by Terry Chandler produced a run of 3.825 seconds at 332.10 mph to lock up the No. 1 qualifying position for Sunday's championship eliminations in the NHRA Finals that will end the 2016 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season.

"It's just a number," he said of what earned his team its sixth pole of the year.

"It's interesting how excited people can get over a number. We were the last car down the racetrack, so let's face it - people are rushing to try to get home. But you hear how fanatical the people were who stuck around."

Beckman seemed more impressed to have a drag racing legend be his "back-up girl."

"Pam's heyday in drag racing was 40 years ago, and she was part of that scene. From my youngest memory in drag racing, everything about this sport touched my heart. A lot of people are passionate about football but they'll never be able to participate in the sport. I'm absolutely passionate about drag racing and able to participate in the sport. To be able to circle back and include someone like (Jungle Pam), somebody that I just thought was so iconic.

"I still have to wrap my head around it that these are all just normal people who have to go to work. She has bills to pay. But to  me, she is Jungle Pam. She was part of the team where I just thought, short of taking a rocket to the moon, it's the coolest thing that I thought a kid could get involved in.

"I'm 50 now and I'm involved in it."

No. 1 qualifier: Jack Beckman (Don Schumacher Racing), 3.825 sec.-track record, 332.84 mph-track record

JACK BECKMAN, Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T
Crew chief: Jimmy Prock; assistants: John Medlen, Chris Cunningham
Qualified: No. 1
First round: John Bojec
FRIDAY: 3.921 sec., 326.32 mph, (Session 1); 3.865, 332.84-track record, (Session 2)
SATURDAY: no time, (Session 3); 3.825 sec.-track record, 332.10, (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:

About Don Schumacher Racing
Don Schumacher Racing, headquartered in Brownsburg, Ind., fields eight 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 three-time world champion Antron Brown; the Sandvik Coromant/Red Fuel Powered by Schumacher dragster driven by Shawn Langdon and the FireAde Top Fuel dragster driven by Leah Pritchett; and in Funny Car, 2016 Funny Car world champion Ron Capps in the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger R/T, 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 and the Make-A-Wish Dodge driven by Tommy Johnson Jr.

DSR has won 292 NHRA national event titles and 16 world championships.
Follow Don Schumacher Racing at, on Twitter at @shoeracing and

Please visit Don Schumacher Racing for additional information.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

NHRA season wraps up this weekend but Beckman, Infinite Hero Dodge Charter R/T team hopeful to end season with win at Pomona

BROWNSBURG, Ind. (Nov. 8, 2016) - Jack Beckman and the Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car team, sponsored by Terry Chandler, travel to Pomona, Calif., this weekend for the final event of the 2016 NHRA season.

"The season begins and ends almost in my backyard," said Beckman, a resident of Norco, Calif. "I'm 30 miles from the racetrack. Pomona is the track where I have spent the most time. For 10 years, I stood on the starting line flipping the switch for the students we were teaching at the Frank Hawley School.

"I have a deep, personal relationship with that track and it goes back to my childhood. Going there as an 8-year-old to watch the races. What I haven't done there is win in a nitro car. I've taken two Super Comp trophies from Pomona but neither of those were at the Finals."

At the NHRA Finals in 2015, Beckman qualified No. 2 with a 3.890-second pass at 327.90 mph.

He advanced to the semifinals when he defeated Chad Head and Cruz Pedregon but lost to eventual champion Del Worsham.

A win in Pomona is a win the Infinite Hero Foundation team and Beckman would love to mark off their to-do list.

The Infinite Hero Foundation team is currently No. 4 in the NHRA points standings. Although they are not mathematically able to win the championship title, a win at the 52nd annual Auto Club NHRA Finals could advance them to No. 2.

In 2015, Beckman battled for the championship with Worsham of Kalitta Motorsports throughout NHRA's Countdown to the Championship playoffs..

"The year for the Infinite Hero team really didn't stack up to our preseason expectations. We've won two races so far. We posed for at least a top-five finish and could finish as high as second. I think we and a lot of other people expected more out of our results this year. It's not for lack of trying.

"One thing that's a great salve for this would be leaving Pomona with a trophy. It's the one trophy that I think would shine the brightest for two months because you can't lose a race in the offseason.

"If you win the Finals, until we roll around back to the Winternationals again, you're technically undefeated in that time span. I'd like to say I was the guy to do that with the Infinite Hero Dodge at this race."


Sunday, October 30, 2016

DSR: Beckman, Infinite Hero Dodge team shift focus toward finishing Mello Yello season strong at Pomona finale in two weeks

LAS VEGAS (Oct. 30, 2016) – The Infinite Hero Foundation Funny Car team, sponsored by Terry Chandler and piloted by Jack Beckman, may be out of the hunt for the 2016 Championship title but they’re already aiming their focus to 2017.

The Infinite Hero Foundation team was officially eliminated from the Championship chase on Sunday during the16th annual NHRA Nationals the Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

They entered race day as the No. 1 qualifying team at the Strip with their pass of 3.871 at 327.43 mph.

In round one, Beckman lined up against Jeff Arend and made a 3.890-second pass at 326.95 mph. He then advanced to the second to face Courtney Force.

Beckman went into immediate tire smoke and coasted to 7.852-second pass at 78.74 mph to give Force the win.

Entering race day, Beckman trailed the points leader and Don Schumacher Racing teammate, Ron Capps, by 131 points. But due to their second round lose, Beckman fell back to 151 points behind Capps, who advanced to the semifinals.
Photo Credit: Auto Imagery
“We knew realistically we weren't going to be able to win the championship coming into this race. But now it's official,” Beckman said.

“I really thought we’d put down some numbers good enough to have a car that could go out and win the race, and to go out and smoke the tires second round, nobody was expecting that out of the Infinite Hero car.

“We're staying and we're testing tomorrow, and we're not testing so much to get an advantage for Pomona, we're testing to get a head start for next year. We'll go back to our regular combination for Pomona and go out there and try to be smart about it and turn on four win lights Sunday there.”

In two weeks, the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing series returns to Auto Club Raceway at Pomona for the final race of the 2016 season.

“I gotta tell ya, a trophy makes the off-season go by really, really well. Right now, everybody is staying positive, we'll focus on Pomona, we'll unload there and on Friday we'll go to work.”


Saturday, October 29, 2016

DSR: Beckman takes fifth Funny Car pole of Mello Yello season; Brown can clinch Top Fuel title Sunday while Capps extends lead

LAS VEGAS (Oct. 29, 2016) – Jack Beckman and the Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car barely ran fast enough Friday to get a speeding ticket on the Interstate 15 and were ranked 22nd in qualifying for the NHRA Toyota Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

But the pace quickened Saturday night when the Beckman’s Dodge tuned by crew chief Jimmy Prock with assistants John Medlen and Chris Cunningham produced a track-record time of 3.871 seconds at a speed of 327.43 mph to edge Don Schumacher Racing teammate Matt Hagan (Mopar Express Lane/Rocky Boots) for the pole by one-thousandth of a second.

“We got our act together and went the 3.871. That was a sigh of relief, and I thought that would keep us in the top-four but no way I thought it would keep us on the pole,” said Beckman, who earned his fifth No. 1 qualifying spot and set his fourth elapsed time track record.

“The conditions were phenomenal and about as good as you're going to see, but we're still fighting altitude here. It's tough, even with a nitro car, to make that sort of horsepower. I didn't think it was going to stay.

Ron Capps and the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge with crew chief Rahn Tobler and assistant Eric Lane qualified fourth and were the most consistent team with four runs between 3.881 and 3.910 seconds.

More importantly for the NAPA team heading into Sunday, Capps was able to extend his lead over DSR teammate Tommy Johnson Jr. (Make-A-Wish) by nine points to 73. But Hagan, ranked third, was able to pull within 83 of Capps and 10 of Johnson.

It’s been a challenge for Capps not to think about his pursuit his first world championship after being the runner-up a record four times, but nothing could have been further from his mind when his brother, Jon Capps, slammed his Funny Car into the guardwall moments before he was to make his last run.

“I feel so safe in my own car when I have control of it. Watching him from the outside was very hard,” he said.
Photo Credit: Auto Imagery
“I did the burnout I could see the marks from where he came down from his wheelstand and it kind of played in my head a little bit. I can’t thank Tobler enough for giving me such a confidence boost all weekend. It’s so much fun right now. We just need a big day tomorrow. We’re treating it like it’s the last race of the season. We’ll keep doing what we’ve been doing and if Tobler gives me a great race car and makes me look good like he has all year we’ll be alright.”

In Top Fuel, Leah Pritchett and the Pennzoil team led by crew chief Todd Okuhara and assistant Joe Barlam started the last session as the No. 1 qualifier and despite running its quickest time of the weekend at 3.700, Clay Millican of Stringer Performance posted a 3.689 to take the pole and prevent the Pennzoil team from earning its second pole in three events.

"This girl cannot complain at all," said Pritchett, who earned her third top-two qualifying spot in three races.

"We were planning to throw down out there, thinking we were either going to be up and smoke or .68 or better – but I can't complain at all. We're just going to keep rolling and do what we do."

DSR’s Antron Brown, the reigning and two-time Top Fuel champ, will start Sunday with a 148-point lead over Doug Kalitta, who outscored Brown in qualifying points 3-2 and qualified one spot higher in third to narrow the gap from 150.

“We made some great, quality laps today and that sets us up really good for tomorrow,” said Brown, who can clinch his third world championship in five years if he leaves Las Vegas with a 130-point lead over Kalitta.

“We would’ve love to have gained some more points. We were shooting to go up there and be No. 1 qualifier, of course. The track’s just really, really tight. But, with that being said, we had some great laps this weekend. We literally ran four, great, quality laps. We’re just going to keep working like normal.”


Wednesday, October 26, 2016

DSR: No. 4-ranked Beckman, Infinite Hero team look for third event win of season, second in four Countdown playoff races at Las Vegas

BROWNSBURG, Ind. (Oct. 26, 2016) ­­- The Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car team, piloted by Jack Beckman and funded by Terry Chandler, travel to Las Vegas for the 16th annual NHRA Nationals the Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway this week.

As the NHRA points stand, the Infinite Hero Foundation team is currently fourth, 131 points behind the leader and Don Schumacher Racing teammate Ron Capps.

"The championship is all but out of reach for us but the trophy certainly isn't," Beckman said. "We are not going to treat Vegas like a test session. We feel we have a realistic shot at winning that race.
"Mathematically, the championship is still possible but realistically I think second place might be doable for us. Really, our short-term goal is just a trophy on Sunday in Vegas."

Last year at the Las Vegas event, Beckman and the team, led by crew chief Jimmy Prock with assistants John Medlen and Chris Cunningham, began race day as the No. 4 qualifying team and finished in the quarterfinals round to Capps.

The Infinite Hero Foundation team is looking for its third event win of the season and second win of the NHRA Countdown to the Championship playoff.

"We need to execute well on Friday in qualifying. We just need to be smart about trying to make four quick runs before we even get to Sunday.

"We may make a radical change in the clutch department. We will either do it in qualifying to see if it gives us what we want or we will test it more extensively on Monday in preparation for the last race (in two weeks at Pomona, Calif.) and start getting ready for 2017.
Photo Credit: Auto Imagery

Sunday, October 16, 2016

DSR: Beckman falls in second round to DSR teammate, points leader Capps as Infinite Hero team leaves Texas fourth in points standings

ENNIS, TX, (Oct. 16, 2016) - Despite second round exit at the 31st annual AAA Fallnationals, Jack Beckman and the Infinite Hero Foundation team, funded by Terry Chandler, remain positive as they finish the 2016 NHRA season.

Beckman and the team led by crew chief Jimmy Prock with assistants John Medlen and Chris Cunningham, entered race day as the No. 2 qualifier. Their best qualifying effort came on Friday night during the second session when Beckman clocked a 3.843-second lap at 333.66 mph for the track speed record at Texas Motorplex.

"I don't have a crystal ball and I can't look to the last run at Pomona but I think if there was a must win race for the Infinite Hero car this season, I think it all boiled down to second round at Dallas," Beckman said.

During the opening round of competition on Sunday, the Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T lined up against Dave Richards. Beckman got the win with his 3.908, 325.92 effort.

Beckman moved onto round two when he matched up against Don Schumacher Racing teammate and NHRA Countdown to the Championship points leader, Ron Capps.

Beckman made a great run at 3.938- (320.51) but Capps left the starting line first and got the win light.

"That was a must win against that NAPA car," Beckman said. "That represents a 40-point swing and they already had a pretty significate lead in the points and they just stretched it even further. That's a real gut check for everybody.

"That's a huge let down - especially to be that close of a race. But, we're paid professionals and we do some great things for the injured veterans through the Infinite Hero Foundation and that's definitely something for us to hang our hats on."

Aside from their performance on the racetrack, the team was part of helping the Infinite Hero Foundation issue grants to the ReBOOT program ( and Airpower Foundation (

"The foundation was able to donate $200,000 in grants because of the challenge coin program."

Beckman carries challenge coins inside his Funny Car during every pass down the racetrack and all proceeds go back to help veterans return to their everyday lives.

Beckman and the Infinite Hero team will have a weekend off before heading back to Las Vegas for the 16th annual NHRA Nationals the Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

"We're going to do our best to win that race then we're going to stay and test and start plans for the off-season and the 2017 season. But again, I don't see why we can't finish this year with two trophies."
Photo Credit: Auto Imagery
For additional information, please visit Don Schumacher Racing.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

DSR: Beckman, Infinite Hero team look for first Countdown win at Texas Motorplex this weekend to move up from third

BROWNSBURG, Ind. (Oct. 12, 2016) – Jack Beckman and the Infinite Hero Foundation team head to Texas Motorplex near Dallas for the fourth race of the NHRA Countdown to the Championship.

Beckman says he and Texas Motorplex have a long relationship.

“Me and Dallas, have a ton of history,” he said. “I went the very first NHRA national event there in 1986. My buddy from the Air Force and I drove 500 miles one way to see that race.

“My dad, who was a contractor and traveled the country, had settled in Dallas just prior to that. I raced my first national event there in Super Comp in 1998 then I raced my first Nitro Funny Car race in Dallas in 2006.
“And with all of that, I’ve had zero success there. I have never left there with a trophy.

“Now, maybe more so than ever, it is the race that I want on my resume. My dad is 79 years old and he lives 45 minutes from the track and I want to have him in the winner’s circle and present him with that cowboy hat, which is the token of winning the national event there. That is high on my priority list.”

At the Texas Motorplex in 2015, Beckman qualified No. 2 for the team funded by Terry Chandler and advanced to the final round where he lost to eventual season champion Del Worsham.

This year, the Infinite Hero Foundation team, led by crew chief Jimmy Prock with assistants John Medlen and Chris Cunningham, is currently No. 3 in the NHRA points standings and 93 points behind the points leader and Don Schumacher Racing teammate Ron Capps.

A win at the 31st annual AAA Texas NHRA Fallnationals will help the team close the gap in points and increase their shot at the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing series Championship title.

“Points-wise, it’s a must win for us. Not only is it a must win for the Infinite Hero team but we have hope that NAPA (Capps) and Make-A-Wish (Tommy Johnson Jr., currently No. 2) go out early and the way those teams have been running, that’s probably not likely.

“I know a lot of people will say, ‘Well how can you wish that on your teammates?’ Well, if the tables were turned, like they were last year, they were all wishing it on us. We’re teammates in certain areas.

“When it comes down to the points chase, when it comes down to the Countdown, when it comes down to the last three races, I think everybody would tell you from burnout to turn out, you don’t have any teammates out there.”

Beckman’s weekend starts Friday afternoon when he joins with Chandler with presenting two $100,000 Infinite Hero Foundation grants in the track’s Champion’s Club.

Accepting the grants will be Houston native and retired Navy Lt. Morgan Luttrell, who sustained a major brain injury on a training mission in 2009 as a member of the Navy SEALS.

He was deployed multiple times to Iraq and Afghanistan during a 14-year military career, and since being granted a medical discharge in 2014, the brawny 6-foot-5, 230-pound Luttrell returned to Texas and discovered the Center for Brain Health, part of the University of Texas at Dallas School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences where he was treated for his traumatic brain injury.

What he observed while there set him on another course that led him to earn his Master’s degree, and he is currently working on his doctorate to become a cognitive scientist at the University of Texas at Dallas.

The grants will go to the ReBOOT program ( where Luttrell is director of development and working to develop a comprehensive, individualized, multi-disciplined approach to increasing mental and physical well-being for our nation’s veterans.

Infinite Hero will also present a grant to the Airpower Foundation ( that works in conjunction with Infinite Hero and ReBOOT to provide continued treatment for veterans at no charge at Brain Treatment Centers in Orange County, Calif., and Seattle, Wash., with plans to expand to the East Coast next year.

Making the presentations will be Infinite Hero Foundation executive director Laurie Baker and Chandler, who has funded the Infinite Hero Funny Car racing program at Don Schumacher Racing for the past three years.

Chandler, a native of New Mexico, funds the Infinite Hero team along with DSR’s Make-A-Wish Funny Car. Neither organization contributes any funding to the teams. Chandler’s program has raised nearly $500,000 for Infinite Hero and has brought tremendous awareness to some of the most difficult issues facing our returning military heroes and families.

This season, Beckman has raised more than $120,000 through the sale of special military “challenge coins.” He carries at least 10 on each run down the track and then personalizes each for fans making a $100 donation to Infinite Hero.


Sunday, October 2, 2016

DSR: Beckman goes to semifinals at Maple Grove as Infinite Hero Dodge team continues hunt in NHRA Countdown to the Championship

READING, Pa. (Oct. 2, 2016) - Jack Beckman and the Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge Charger R/T team, sponsored by Terry Chandler, advanced to the semifinals of the 32nd annual Dodge NHRA Nationals at Maple Grove Raceway.

Due to wet weather conditions in Reading, Pa., NHRA teams only had one lap of qualifying to set the ladder for Sunday's eliminations.

With only one qualifying pass, Beckman was seeded as the No. 11 qualifier when he pedaled his way to a 9.998-second pass at 63.76 mph.

He matched up against Chad Head on Sunday for the first round of competition and improved on his qualifying efforts to post a 3.872 at 330.80 to give him the win light.

Beckman, along with his crew chief Jimmy Prock, clocked their career best elapsed time with a 3.850 (332.26) against reigning world champion Del Worsham to give them the win and to send the team to the semifinals against Don Schumacher Racing teammate Tommy Johnson Jr.

Beckman ran a 3.899, 327.51  mph pass in the semifinals but Johnson got the win with his 3.892, 328.94 and later won the event.

"I'm actually frustrated," Beckman said. "We had a phenomenal race car and lost a close race. But that is one of those must-win situations.

"You had four DSR Funny Cars in the semifinals. The No. 1, 2, 3, 4 cars in the points. We needed to win this race. They're not going to give us a re-run. We're going to have to tighten our belts a little bit.

"We have three chances left, so here's the deal. We need to make it to all three of these final rounds and there probably can't be one of the top two cars in the other lane for us to have a legitimate chance at the championship.

"To some extent, we control our fate. But we're going to have to rely on Make-A-Wish and NAPA stumbling, somewhat, and they're not showing signs of that. There is no reason for us to be beating ourselves up about our performance this weekend. We set the track record, we went one of the fastest speeds of all time here, and we beat some tough cars. But we're not out of opportunities to beat cars in front of us in the points."


Wednesday, September 28, 2016

DSR: Beckman, Infinite Hero Foundation team return to Maple Grove after big jump in standings following playoff win near St. Louis

BROWNSBURG, Ind. (Sept. 28, 2016) – After their win last weekend at Gateway Motorsports Park near St. Louis, Jack Beckman and the Infinite Hero Foundation Funny Car team head to the 32nd Dodge NHRA Nationals with their heads held high.

The Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car funded by Terry Chandler left Gateway on Sunday with the event title when Beckman defeated Don Schumacher Racing teammate Tommy Johnson Jr. in the final round.

The win was the team’s first win since the Chicago in mid-July.

“Coming off a win, subconsciously, everybody walks a little taller and has a little bit more confidence,” Beckman said of his team led by crew chief Jimmy Prock with assistants John Medlen and Chris Cunningham.

This weekend the team returns to Maple Grove Raceway, where they are the reigning event champion after rain wiped out three of four qualifying sessions.

With only one round of qualifying, Beckman entered race day as the No. 3 seed. Throughout the course of race day, Beckman knocked out Alexis DeJoria, Johnson, DSR teammate Ron Capps and Chad Head from competition.

“They’ve moved Reading up a few weeks and I think that’s a wise because last year, we almost lost the entire event because of rain. We only got one qualifying run in. It’s such a crapshoot during first round of eliminations – tons of tire smoke.

“And it’s a good decision to put it before Dallas this year. The weather around Reading this time of year tends to be favorable. I would definitely sacrifice world record conditions to have a higher likelihood of running without rain.”

The weather forecast for this weekend currently looks cooler which could result in big racing numbers for the NHRA teams.

“I’m not the weatherman and all the nitro teams are going to be faced with the same conditions. When we unload, we’ll figure out what the weather has in store for us,” Beckman said.

After their win last weekend, the team jumped from eighth in the standings to third and only 70 points behind leader Capps.
Despite the team’s win last year, Beckman says the team needs to focus on this year’s fight for the Funny Car championship.

“I don’t know if winning last year is going to be any factor because we don’t know if track or weather conditions will be the same. We definitely don’t have the same clutch pack in the car – which has been our Achilles heel most of this year. We’ve been trying to understand what the car wants and hoping it will incorporate with our tune-up changes. I would say we’re cautiously optimistic.

“We still aren’t in a comfort zone like we were this time last yea,r but we’ve got the ability to make the changes we need to be successful.”