Monthly Archives: July 2017

The late Terry Chandler would be proud of her Make-A-Wish team, Johnson after nearly defending their Route 66 Nationals title

Category : DSR news

JOLIET, Ill. (July 9, 2017) – Tommy Johnson Jr. has competed in 411 NHRA national events, raced in 41 championship rounds and left with the trophy 16 times.

But the one he wanted most evaded him Sunday in the final round of the NHRA Route 66 Nationals near Chicago.

The woman he called “Aunt Terry” and funded the Make-A-Wish Funny Car team for which he drove at Don Schumacher Racing lost her valiant three-month battle with brain cancer on the Fourth of July and was laid to rest Saturday at her home in New Mexico.

Johnson was disheartened because his team didn’t beat DSR teammate Ron Capps in the final round.

But it seemed less about losing a race, then being able to carry on a hope that getting the Wally trophy would make everything alright or at least better. Nothing will make the loss of Terry alright, and he knows that.

Johnson and Terry’s Make-A-Wish team worked throughout the hot, muggy weekend to make their Dodge Charger R/T as good as it could be if not better despite their heartache. They always found time to accept condolences from hundreds of fans, racers and friends.

It was amazing that the team led by crew chief John Collins and Rip Reynolds won the first round let alone the second and third.

Johnson found ways to make Make-A-Wish kids smile on Saturday, just like Terry did for more than two years. He listened to those who wanted to share a “Terry story.” Just as she would do, he always smiled back.

“It was a tough weekend for everybody with the loss of Terry, just a tough weekend,” he said while sitting alone in his race team office. “I’m proud of the guys for sticking together and wanting to go out here and win this thing for Terry. To have to put the (memorial) stickers on the car in memory of her was tough and we wanted nothing more than to win this race for her. No matter what, I know she was proud of us. But we wanted to win this one awful bad for her.

“It’s been a hard weekend all weekend, but to do that was really emotional, not just for ourselves but for everybody. It just recapped what all she had done for this sport and for our teams and for everybody out here. I think everybody in the pits had a tough time with that today.”

Perhaps more than the trophy, he needed heartfelt words from Aunt Terry at one of the lowest points of his career.

“She would’ve had something funny to say to me. She always had a way of picking you up and she loved you no matter that. We’ve always got to remember that. She would’ve rode me in a fun way. But she was a great lady and can’t wait to get her another win.”

DSR FUNNY CARS
Event winner: Ron Capps (Don Schumacher Racing)
No. 1 qualifier: Robert Hight (3.851 sec., 334.73 mph-track records)

TOMMY JOHNSON JR., Terry Chandler’s Make-A-Wish 2017 Dodge Charger R/T
Crew chief: John Collins; Assistant: Rip Reynolds
SUNDAY’S CHAMPIONSHIP ELIMINATIONS
First round: JOHNSON (4.026 sec., 319.07 mph) def. John Force (4.982, 157.39)
Second round: JOHNSON (4.026, 317.72) def. J.R. Todd (4.260, 248.75)
Semifinals: JOHNSON (4.015, 317.87) def. Tim Wilkerson (7.734, 117.15)
Final: Ron Capps (4.026, 319.67) def. JOHNSON (4.047, 319.90)
QUALIFYING RESULTS
Qualified: No. 6
FRIDAY: 4.274 sec., 216.69 mph, (Session 1); 3.913, 326.00, (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 4.214, 226.16, (Session 3); 4.083, 248.43, (Session 4)
CHICAGO BY THE NUMBERS
Last event (June 15), Norwalk, Ohio: Qualified No. 5, lost in semifinals to Jack Beckman
A year ago at Chicago: Qualified No. 8, lost in second round to Matt Hagan
Career at Chicago: Wins 1 (2015); Runner-ups 2 (2014, 2003); Poles 2 (2014, 2006)

2017 NHRA MELLO YELLO DRAG RACING SERIES FUNNY CAR STANDINGS
(Unofficial after Joliet, Ill.; 13th of 24 events; wins in parenthesis; DSR drivers in CAPS)
1 RON CAPPS (6) 1,208 —–
2 MATT HAGAN (3) 1,022 -186
3 JACK BECKMAN (2) 914 -294
4 Robert Hight 853 -355
5 TOMMY JOHNSON JR. (1) 833 -375
6 Courtney Force 749 -459
7 John Force (1) 718 -490
8 Tim Wilkerson 599 -609
9 J.R. Todd 559 -649
10 Cruz Pedregon 463 -745

https://youtu.be/LK_2dla1rIAhttps://youtu.be/LK_2dla1rI


DSR dedicates Funny Car title, two runners-up finishes to friend Terry Chandler

Category : DSR news

Thank you Terry! We always will remember you

All DSR Funny Car final, Brown’s trophy run in Top Fuel near Chicago
provide ultimate salute to honor the beloved, the late Terry Chandler

JOLIET, Ill. (July 9, 2017) – Don Schumacher won five NHRA national event titles as a driver and had collected another 3 05 as an owner before his seven-car team arrived near Chicago for this weekend’s Route 66 Nationals.

But none would have had the emotional meaning had Tommy Johnson Jr. and the late Terry Chandler’s Make-A-Wish team with crew chief John Collins and Rip Reynolds crossed the finish line ahead of teammate Ron Capps in Sunday’s final round.

Don Schumacher Racing’s total is now 311 after Ron Capps and the NAPA Intrepid Fallen Heroes Dodge Charger R/T won its’ sixth event title of the season and DSR’s 12th in 13 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series races by edging Johnson for the title.

It was almost another double-up day for DSR when two-time reigning world champ Antron Brown advanced to the Top Fuel final round before losing to Steve Torrence.
But Sunday was about more than earning points or setting records, winning or losing.

It was about Terry from the start to finish, but as much as she loved drag racing she would have loved the final Funny Car while being a little disappointed her team didn’t win. It came down to the best race of the day with Capps’ 4.026-second run at 319.67 mph edging Johnson’s 4.047 at 319.90.

Terry’s teams had won the previous two Route 66 Funny Car titles with Johnson winning last year and Jack Beckman following Johnson last year.

It was a career-best sixth win for Capps this season in which he has dominated the points standings. This win, however, was one he couldn’t have accepted losing.

Terry, who funds DSR Funny Cars for Johnson and the Infinite Hero Dodge for Jack Beckman, was laid to rest Saturday in a private ceremony in New Mexico after a valiant three-month battle against brain cancer.

Before racing began, her Make-A-Wish and Infinite Hero teams were joined by her brother Johnny Gray’s Gray Motorsports Pro Stock team along with the DSR family, NHRA racing community and many of the sport’s most iconic drivers behind the starting line to honor Terry with a video montage created by NHRA and a moment of silence to honor her profound impact on hundreds of Make-A-Wish families and military veterans through the Infinite Hero Foundation.

Despite not winning the title for Terry, the day ended as it began with tributes to her.
“You already knew how much she was loved, but people that had never met her before wanted to give their respects,” Capps said.

“Before we started the car I saw her standing outside my car because I guess you just get so used to it and I had to shake my head for a second. You ‘re not used to her not being here. Then I did the burnout and I’m like ‘oh my gosh, there’s her car next to me’ and it just was a strange race. I never did see TJ.

“She loved drag racing so much. But we obviously didn’t know as much. Don went to the service and the funeral on Saturday and came back and said, this was her life. More than we even thought. How much she looked forward to coming to the drag races and making (Make-A-Wish) kids smile. He could not believe, every one of her friends, how much they talked about that’s all she talked about when she was back home in New Mexico.

“A very emotional weekend. Bittersweet but at the same time it’s a DSR car and I’m glad we can give Don the trophy to do what he’s going to do with her family.”
In Top Fuel, Brown’s thoughts were more about Terry than missing his third title of the season.

“This race was for Miss Terry,” he said after the final round. “We just wanted to race hard and it would have been nice to bring it home. Our hearts go out to the Chandler and Gray families. I wish we could have brought it home for them, but she’s up there smiling down on us and I’m going to smile right now.”

DSR TOP FUEL DRAGSTERS
Event winner: Steve Torrence (CAPCO Contractors)
No. 1 qualifier: Brittany Force (John Force Racing) 3.711 sec., 323.04 mph
ANTRON BROWN, Matco Tools/U.S. Army Top Fuel dragster
Crew chiefs: Brian Corradi, Mark Oswald; Assistant: Brad Mason
SUNDAY’S CHAMPIONSHIP ELIMINATIONS
First round: BROWN (3.776 sec., 322.42 mph) def. Doug Kalitta (6.478, 152.78)
Second round: BROWN (3.853, 305.29) def. Leah Pritchett (5.247, 139.10)
Semifinals: BROWN (3.784, 325.53) def. Clay Millican (4.689, 165.64)
Final: Steve Torrence (3.779, 326.08) def. BROWN (3.786, 326.71)
QUALIFYING RESULTS
Qualified: No. 7
FRIDAY: 3.766 sec., 328.54 mph, (Session 1); 6.008, 112.76, (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 4.187, 209.79, (Session 3); 3.766, 326.32, (Session 4)
CHICAGO BY THE NUMBERS
Last event (June 15), Norwalk, Ohio: Qualified No. 5, lost in second round to Leah Pritchett
A year ago at Chicago: Qualified No. 4, won in championship round over J.R. Todd
Career at Chicago: Wins 5 (2016, 2014, 2012, 2001*, 2000*); Runner-ups 3 (2017, 2009, 2002*);
Poles 2 (2009, 2015) *Pro Stock Motorcycle

LEAH PRITCHETT, Papa John’s Pizza Top Fuel dragster
Crew chief: Todd Okuhara; Assistant: Joe Barlam
SUNDAY’S CHAMPIONSHIP ELIMINATIONS
First round: PRITCHETT (3.858 sec., 294.18) def. Troy Coughlin (3.968, 279.50)
Second round: Antron Brown (3.853, 305.29) def. PRITCHETT (5.247, 139.10)
QUALIFYING RESULTS
Qualified: No. 2
FRIDAY: 3.763 sec., 326.48 mph, (Session 1); 8.668, 82.92, (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 3.817 325.30, (Session 3); 3.723, 326.56, (Session 4)
CHICAGO BY THE NUMBERS
Last event (June 15), Norwalk, Ohio: Qualified No. 4, lost in semifinals to Doug Kalitta
A year ago at Chicago: Qualified No. 9, lost in semifinals to Antron Brown
Career at Chicago: Wins 0; Runner-ups 0; Poles 0

TONY SCHUMACHER, U.S. Army Top Fuel dragster
Crew chief: Mike Green; Assistant: Phil Shuler
SUNDAY’S CHAMPIONSHIP ELIMINATIONS
First round: Blake Alexander (3.940 sec., 301.54) def. SCHUMACHER (3.883, 306.26)
QUALIFYING RESULTS
Qualified: No. 5
FRIDAY: 3.827 sec., 314.24 mph, (Session 1); 3.758, 325.37, (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 3.842, 319.98, (Session 3); 3.821, 321.50 , (Session 4)
CHICAGO BY THE NUMBERS
Last event (June 15), Norwalk, Ohio: Qualified No. 8, lost in second round to Doug Kalitta
A year ago at Chicago: Qualified No. 6, lost in semifinals to J.R. Todd
Career at Chicago: : Wins 5 (2003, 2005, 2008, 2013, 2015); Runner-ups 2 (2010. 2004);
Poles 5 (2012, 2008, 2005/1-2005/2, 2003)

DSR FUNNY CARS
Event winner: Ron Capps (Don Schumacher Racing)
No. 1 qualifier: Robert Hight (3.851 sec., 334.73 mph-track records)

RON CAPPS, NAPA INTREPID FALLEN HEROES FUND 2017 Dodge Charger R/T
Crew chief: Rahn Tobler; Assistant: Eric Lane
SUNDAY’S CHAMPIONSHIP ELIMINATIONS
First round: CAPPS (4.005 sec., 320.89 mph) def. Jonnie Lindberg (4.072, 321.19)
Second round: CAPPS (4.119, 309.98) def. Jim Campbell (4.432, 204.60)
Semifinals: CAPPS (4.038, 318.84) def. Matt Hagan (4.088, 313.58)
Final: CAPPS (4.026, 319.67) def. Tommy Johnson Jr. (4.047, 319.90)
QUALIFYING RESULTS
Qualified: No. 9
FRIDAY: 3.984 sec., 321.27 mph, (Session 1); 3.942, 292.08, (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 4.948 154,97, (Session 3); 4.074, 253.80, (Session 4)
CHICAGO BY THE NUMBERS
Last event (June 15), Norwalk, Ohio: Qualified No. 13, lost in second round to Tommy Johnson Jr.
A year ago at Chicago: Qualified No. 4, lost in championship round to Jack Beckman
Career at Chicago: Wins 2 (2005, 2017); Runner-ups 2 (2016, 2007, 2002); Poles 1 (2013)

TOMMY JOHNSON JR., Terry Chandler’s Make-A-Wish 2017 Dodge Charger R/T
Crew chief: John Collins; Assistant: Rip Reynolds
SUNDAY’S CHAMPIONSHIP ELIMINATIONS
First round: JOHNSON (4.026 sec., 319.07 mph) def. John Force (4.982, 157.39)
Second round: JOHNSON (4.026, 317.72) def. J.R. Todd (4.260, 248.75)
Semifinals: JOHNSON (4.015, 317.87) def. Tim Wilkerson (7.734, 117.15)
Final: Ron Capps (4.026, 319.67) def. JOHNSON (4.047, 319.90)
QUALIFYING RESULTS
Qualified: No. 6
FRIDAY: 4.274 sec., 216.69 mph, (Session 1); 3.913, 326.00, (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 4.214, 226.16, (Session 3); 4.083, 248.43, (Session 4)
CHICAGO BY THE NUMBERS
Last event (June 15), Norwalk, Ohio: Qualified No. 5, lost in semifinals to Jack Beckman
A year ago at Chicago: Qualified No. 8, lost in second round to Matt Hagan
Career at Chicago: Wins 1 (2015); Runner-ups 3 (2017, 2014, 2003); Poles 2 (2014, 2006)

MATT HAGAN, Mopar Express Lane 2017 Dodge Charger R/T
Crew chief: Dickie Venables; Assistant: Michael Knudsen
SUNDAY’S CHAMPIONSHIP ELIMINATIONS
First round: HAGAN (4.162 sec., 251.95 mph) def. Del Worsham (5.718, 133.68)
Second round: HAGAN (4.006, 319.60) def. Alexis DeJoria (4.399, 210.67)
Semifinals: Ron Capps (4.038, 318.84) def. HAGAN (4.088, 313.58)
QUALIFYING RESULTS
Qualified: No. 4
FRIDAY: 3.946 sec., 326.40 mph, (Session 1); 3.895, 332.10, (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 4.970, 158.20, (Session 3); 10.009, 74.92, (Session 4)
CHICAGO BY THE NUMBERS
Last event (June 15), Norwalk, Ohio: Qualified No. 1, lost in second round to Jack Beckman
A year ago at Chicago: Qualified No. 1, lost in semifinals to Ron Capps
Career at Chicago: Wins 3 (2014, 2013, 2010); Runner-ups1 (2015); Poles 1 (2016)

JACK BECKMAN, Terry Chandler’s Infinite Hero Foundation 2017 Dodge Charger R/T
Crew chiefs: Dean Antonelli, John Medlen, Neal Strausbaugh
SUNDAY’S CHAMPIONSHIP ELIMINATIONS
First round: BECKMAN (4.020 sec., 320.2 mph) def. Bob Bode (DQ, centerline)
Second round: Tim Wilkerson (4.107, 314.61) def. BECKMAN (5.061, 172.65)
QUALIFYING RESULTS
Qualified: No. 2
FRIDAY: 3.966 sec., 324.36 mph, (Session 1); 3.856, 330.23, (Session 2)
SATURDAY: 6.872, 100.56, (Session 3); 4.551, 182.38, (Session 4)
CHICAGO BY THE NUMBERS
Last event (June 15), Norwalk, Ohio: Qualified No. 9, won in championship round over Robert Hight
A year ago at Chicago: Qualified No. 2, won in championsh ip round over Ron Capps
Career at Chicago: Wins 1 (2016); Runner-ups 0; Poles 0

2017 NHRA MELLO YELLO DRAG RACING SERIES TOP FUEL STANDINGS
(Unofficial after Joliet, Ill.; 13th of 24 events; wins in parenthesis; DSR drivers in CAPS)
1 Steve Torrence (5) 1,188 —–
2 LEAH PRITCHETT (3) 1,087 -101
3 ANTRON BROWN (2) 1,085 -103
4 TONY SCHUMACHER (1) 894 -294
5 Doug Kalitta 813 -375
6 Brittany Force (1) 795 -393
7 Clay Millican (1) 773 -415
8 Terry McMillen 509 -679
9 Scott Palmer 496 -692
10 Troy Coughlin Jr. 480 -708

2017 NHRA MELLO YELLO DRAG RACING SERIES FUNNY CAR STANDINGS
(Unofficial after Joliet, Ill.; 13th of 24 events; wins in parenthesis; DSR drivers in CAPS)
1 RON CAPPS (6) 1,208 —–
2 MATT HAGAN (3) 1,022 -186
3 JACK BECKMAN (2) 914 -294
4 Robert Hight 853 -355
5 TOMMY JOHNSON JR. (1) 833 -375
6 Courtney Force 749 -459
7 John Force (1) 718 -490
8 Tim Wilkerson 599 -609
9 J.R. Todd 559 -649
10 Cruz Pedregon 463 -745


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 and the Papa John’s Top Fuel dragster driven by Leah Pritchett; and in Funny Car, 2016 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 Dodge Charger R/T, and 2012 NHRA world champion Jack Beckman in the Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge and the Make-A-Wish Dodge driven by Tommy Johnson Jr., both of which are funded by the late Terry Chandler.

DSR has won 311 NHRA national event titles and 16 world championships.
Follow Don Schumacher Racing at ShoeRacing.com, on Twitter at @shoeracing and Facebook.com/shoeracing.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Jeff Wolf (wolfj@shoeracing.com), 702.524.1368
Leah Vaughn (vaughnl@shoeracing.com), 618.516.1988


Johnson, Beckman will race on with Make-A-Wish, Infinite Hero this weekend in Route 66 Nationals to honor memory of Terry Chandler

Category : DSR news

BROWNSBURG, Ind. (July 5, 2017) – Don Schumacher Racing and especially its Make-A-Wish and Infinite Hero Foundation Funny Car teams prepare for this weekend’s NHRA Route 66 Nationals near Chicago with heavy hearts.

On Tuesday afternoon, they lost their spiritual leader.

Terry Chandler, a native of New Mexico, lost her valiant fight with brain cancer on Tuesday afternoon. She was 65 when she died in Florida with family and loved ones at her side.

She missed the NHRA Mello Yello Series event at Las Vegas in early April and a few days later underwent major surgery to partially remove one of three tumors in the front lobe of her brain. It was determined by an MRI that she was suffering from Glioblastoma cancer.

She was immersed in the fight of her life and battled valiantly to the end.

Terry Chandler’s commitment to helping others has left an indelible mark on the National Hot Rod Association and DSR, and her memorable presence at racetracks with her Make-A-Wish families and the Infinite Hero Foundation benefactors will continue to live on in the hearts of thousands.

“Terry is a great human being who devoted the past few years to helping the Make-A-Wish and Infinite Hero foundations with her love and kindness by funding two of our Funny Car teams,” said Don Schumacher, DSR owner and close friend.

“I’ve been reading so many (social media) posts about Terry and how special she was that it makes my heart smile,” said Tommy Johnson Jr., driver of the Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger R/T for DSR since its inception in 2014

“Although we only knew her a few years, it felt like it was forever and she made us feel like her family. ‘Aunt’ Terry always called our team ‘her boys’ and told all of the Make-A-Wish kids that it was ‘their’ racecar on the track, not hers. She loved seeing the faces of those kids light up and made such a difference in so many lives. RIP Sweet Aunt Terry.”

She began attending NHRA national events when her brother, Johnny Gray, drove a Funny Car for DSR. In 2013, Terry and Johnny decided to fund the car he drove as a tribute to their late father, John R. Gray, a self-made man who rose to legendary status in the New Mexico and north Texas oil industry.

Upon Johnny’s retirement from driving at the end of that season, Terry began funding the team and put Johnson in the seat. Terry and her husband, Doug, own and operate Chandler Aviation at the Cavern City Air Terminal in Carlsbad, N.M. Instead of flying the colors of Chandler Aviation on Johnson’s Dodge Charger, she chose to use the racecar as a platform to promote awareness for a great cause. The car was painted and the transporters were wrapped with a striking Make-A-Wish design.

She wanted her racecar to be a “giving car.”

Chandler and DSR host “Wish Kids” and their families in a VIP hospitality pavilion next to the race team’s pit area on Saturdays at each of the 24 Mello Yello events held in 21 markets across the country. The Make-A-Wish crew has the opportunity to engage with the children, giving them a tour of the pit area and racecar.

Toward the end of the 2014 season, another DSR team appeared close to be dissolving when the woman with the infectious smile stepped in to fund the one driven by Jack Beckman and donated its branding to the Infinite Hero Foundation, a non-profit organization that combats the most difficult front line issues by providing grants to help the physical and psychological challenges faced by returning military veterans.

More than $300,000 has been raised by the sale of “challenge coins” Beckman carries on each run and exchanges for a $100 donation to Infinite Hero. Nearly $500,000 has been raised for the organization through Terry’s efforts.

“What she has done and is doing is unbelievable, unbelievable,” Beckman has said numerous times. “If you want to look at this way, she’s also keeping 20 people employed that otherwise might not have jobs.

“The more she learned about the Infinite Hero Foundation she’d say we can’t do everything but let’s do something. She’s such a softie.”

Johnson adds, “There’s a lot to be said for paying it forward. She’s allowing us to use our cars for a great cause.”

Chandler would be proud of the way her two teams will arrive at Route 66 to start the second half of the 24-race season. They were among the strongest in NHRA Mello Yello competition during the rigorous month of June that featured four events in four weeks.

Beckman and the Infinite Hero team led by crew chiefs Dean Antonelli, John Medlen and Neal Strausbaugh return to Route 66 to defend the title they won a year ago. They’ll arrive with momentum after winning two of the last three events in which they advanced to the final round each time. They won the last race at Norwalk, Ohio, 10 days ago and moved up to third in championship points.

Johnson, who won the Route 66 title in 2015, and the team led by crew chief John Collins and assistant Rip Reynolds have steadily improved and advanced to three semifinals in June to move up to fifth in the standings.

A private funeral service will be held with a public memorial tentatively set for over Labor Day Weekend near Indianapolis during the NHRA U.S. Nationals.

JACK BECKMAN, Terry Chandler’s Infinite Hero Foundation 2017 Dodge Charger R/T – won 2 of last 3
Pts Events Wins Rup Semi Qtr 1st rd Poles DNQ W/L
2017 3rd 12 2 2 2 4 2 0 0 21-10
CAREER 264 26 27 47 77 80 21 7 353-231
Best Time, Speed: 3.825 sec., (2016 Pomona 2); 334.15 mph (Seattle 2016)
CHICAGO BY THE NUMBERS
Last event (June 15), Norwalk, Ohio: Qualified No. 9, won in championship round over Robert Hight
A year ago at Chicago: Qualified No. 2, won in championship round over Ron Capps
Career at Chicago: Wins 1 (2016); Runner-ups 0; Poles 0

TOMMY JOHNSON JR., Terry Chandler’s Make-A-Wish 2017 Dodge Charger R/T
Pts Events Wins Rup Semi Qtr 1st rd Poles DNQ W/L
2017 5th 12 1 0 5 2 4 1 0 16-11
CAREER 10 16* 24 58 100 168 15 44 352-350
* 14 FC/2 TF
Best Time, Speed: 3.837 sec. (Phoenix 2017); 330.80 mph (Seattle, 2016)

CHICAGO BY THE NUMBERS
Last event (June 15), Norwalk, Ohio: Qualified No. 5, lost in semifinals to Jack Beckman
A year ago at Chicago: Qualified No. 8, lost in second round to Matt Hagan
Career at Chicago: Wins 1 (2015); Runner-ups 2 (2014, 2003); Poles 2 (2014, 2006)

2017 NHRA MELLO YELLO DRAG RACING SERIES FUNNY CAR STANDINGS
(Official after Norwalk, Ohio; 12th of 24 events; wins in parenthesis; DSR drivers in CAPS)

1. RON CAPPS (5) 1,095 —–
2. MATT HAGAN (3) 946 -149
3. JACK BECKMAN (2) 855 -240
4. Robert Hight 809 -286
5. TOMMY JOHNSON JR. (1) 739 -356
6. Courtney Force 714 -381
7. John Force (1) 683 -412
8. Tim Wilkerson 525 -570
9. J.R. Todd 508 -587
10. Cruz Pedregon 431 -664

 

 

 

 


Terry Chandler’s love, caring leaves lasting legacy after her brave, valiant battle against brain cancer

Category : DSR news

BROWNSBURG, Ind. (July 4, 2017) – Terry Chandler’s commitment to helping others has left an indelible mark on the National Hot Rod Association and Don Schumacher Racing, and her memorable presence at racetracks and with her Make-A-Wish families and the Infinite Hero Foundation will continue to live on in the hearts of thousands.

Sadly, Terry lost her valiant fight with brain cancer on Tuesday afternoon. She was 65 when she died in Florida with family and loved ones at her side.

“Terry is a great human being who devoted the past few years to helping the Make-A-Wish and Infinite Hero foundations with her love and kindness by funding two of our Funny Car teams,” said Don Schumacher, DSR owner and close friend.

“Terry is such a beautiful person. She was so much more than a friend and partner. She is family. We will always see that wonderful smile of hers at the starting line.”

The native of New Mexico missed the NHRA Mello Yello Series event at Las Vegas in early April and a few days later underwent major surgery to partially remove one of three tumors in the front lobe of her brain. It was determined by an MRI that she was suffering from Glioblastoma cancer.

She was immersed in the fight of her life and battled valiantly to the end.

Chandler was presented with the NHRA Blaine Johnson Award in 2015 for her dedication to helping others.

“I love to race,” she told Autoweek magazine in a 2015 article. “And bless my heart, I love to win. These gol-darned cars, I just love ’em.”

Earlier that year, she was described as being “the most influential woman in drag racing” by the Inland Valley (Calif.) Newspapers.

“I never dreamed that I would be blessed in a way that would allow me to help others,” she told the Southern California newspaper.

“Helping people is one of the most important things in the world to me – my daddy, John R. Gray, was an extremely giving man, and I learned from him how important it was to bless the lives of others. That is why this means so much to me. I feel very fortunate to be in this position.”

Terry became a fixture at NHRA national events when her brother, Johnny Gray, drove a Funny Car for DSR. In 2013, Terry and Johnny decided to fund the car he drove as a tribute to their late father John R. Gray, a self-made man who rose to legendary status in the New Mexico and north Texas oil industry.

Upon Johnny’s retirement from driving at the end of that season, Terry began funding the team and added driver Tommy Johnson Jr. Terry and her husband, Doug, own and operate Chandler Aviation at the Cavern City Air Terminal in Carlsbad, N.M. Instead of flying the colors of Chandler Aviation on Johnson’s Dodge Charger, she chose to use the racecar as a platform to promote awareness for a great cause. The car was painted and the transporters were wrapped with a striking Make-A-Wish design.

She wanted her racecar to be a “giving car.”

Terry and one of her “Wish Kids”

Chandler and DSR host “Wish Kids” and their families to the VIP hospitality pavilion next to the race team’s pit area on Saturdays at each of the 24 Mello Yello events held in 21 markets across the country. The Make-A-Wish crew has the opportunity to engage with the children, giving them a tour of the pit area and racecar.

A few months of committing to fund the Make-A-Wish team, another DSR team appeared close to dissolving when the woman with the infectious smile stepped in to fund the one driven by Jack Beckman and donated its branding to the Infinite Hero Foundation, a non-profit organization that combats the most difficult front line issues by providing grants to help the physical and psychological challenges faced by returning military veterans.

More than $300,000 has been raised by the sale of “challenge coins” Beckman carries on each run for a $100 donation to Infinite Hero and nearly $500,000 has been raised for the organization through Terry’s efforts.

For the past two years, she funded the Riley Kids Funny Car to benefit Riley Hospital for Children in Indiana during the prestigious U.S. Nationals near Indianapolis. She contributed additionally during DSR’s annual Open House that weekend that also raised funds for Riley Kids, often bidding on items she would donate back to the effort.

She funded countless Make-A-Wish dreams to provide monumental memories.

She always made it clear to the “Wish Kids” that the racecar was their car. She would proclaim, “This is YOUR racecar.”

And it will continue to be this weekend when her Make-A-Wish and Infinite Hero teams race for her during the NHRA Route 66 Nationals near Chicago.

“Terry is just an incredible lady, and we’ll never know how many lives she impacted,” Don added. “We’ll miss her every day, but we’ll never forget her smile and he big heart.”

A private funeral service will be held with a public memorial tentatively set for over Labor Day Weekend near Indianapolis during the NHRA U.S. Nationals.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Jeff Wolf/Don Schumacher Racing
wolfj@shoeracing.com or 317.286.4411