Don Schumacher Racing drivers Tony Schumacher (Top Fuel) and Matt Hagan (Funny Car) took home Wallys from Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park on Sunday following eliminations for the 2015 CARQUEST Auto Parts NHRA Nationals. Rodger Brogdon (Pro Stock) also won at the track near Phoenix, Arizona.
Schumacher, the No. 1 qualifier for the weekend, defeated Jenna Haddock, Spencer Massey and Antron Brown in earlier rounds to advance to the final against Doug Kalitta.
“I have to give the trophy, the credit, every bit of it to the team this week,” said Schumacher of his 78th win. “I was off. My lights were slower than they’ve been, and everything I tried to do really couldn’t fix it. (Crew chief) Mike Green and Neal (Strausbaugh, assistant crew chief) said, ‘We’ll fight through this. Just do your best.’ They give you confidence with a fast race car. I’m not going to go home and put the trophy on my shelf and feel fulfilled. It should go to Mike’s house, and he should feel fulfilled.”
Hagan won his second Wally of the new season with wins against Jeff Diehl, Cruz Pedregon, Alexis DeJoria and Del Worsham. Hagan has three wins in a row going back to the season finale at Pomona last year.
“We’ve got a killer race car and race team, so I am hoping to keep turning on those win lights,” said Hagan, the 2014 Funny Car world champ. “It keeps getting tougher each year and every car is so competitive. That’s what’s so cool about this sport, it’s tough, but when you win you feel like you really did something. I am just glad to keep this (streak) going.”
Brogdon took home the third Wally of his career by beating defending Pro Stock champ Erica Enders-Stevens in the final round. Along the way, Brogdon earned wins over Deric Kramer, Shane Gray and Drew Skillman.
“This is the earliest I’ve ever won a race,” said Brogdon. “It’s great to win one early and I am the points leader for the first time in my career. I think we’ve got a great opportunity this season. Everybody who follows this sport knows how hard it is to win a race. This is fantastic. My crew is telling me this car is going to be faster at Gainesville, so I think we are going to have some fun this year.”
The NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series gets back on track Thursday through Sunday, March 12th through 15th at Florida’s Auto-Plus Raceway at Gainesville, home of the Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals. Keep up with the action at www.nhra.com.
Quotes in this piece provided by the NHRA.
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