DSR Phoenix Post Race Recap
NHRA Arizona Nationals
Event 2 of 24 (Phoenix)
Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park
Feb. 23-25, 2018
DSR Phoenix Race Day Highlights:
- Tony Schumacher ran his 1200th round of NHRA competition during E1
- Tommy Johnson Jr. races to a runner-up finish in Funny Car
- Matt Hagan leaves Phoenix as the Funny Car points leader
- Johnson propels from tenth to fifth in points
TOMMY JOHNSON JR.
Driver of the Make-A-Wish Foundation Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 6 (3.879 E.T. at 328.62 MPH)
E1: 4.715 E.T. at 225.60 MPH defeated Robert Hight 4.806 E.T. at 273.44 MPH
E2: 4.454 E.T. at 244.74 MPH defeated Richard Townsend 5.174 E.T. at 144.52 MPH
E3: 3.916 E.T. at 328.46 MPH defeated Shawn Langdon 3.958 E.T. at 325.77 MPH
E4: 6.814 E.T. at 101.57 MPH defeated by Courtney Force 3.834 E.T. at 337.16 MPH
Tommy Johnson Jr. entered the Phoenix event without a 2018 round win and sitting in a three-way tie for the No. 10 ranking. Not only did he set off his first win light of the season, but Johnson raced Terry and Doug Chandler’s Make-A-Wish Foundation Dodge Charger R/T all the way to the Arizona Nationals final round on Sunday.
Along the way to round four, Johnson defeated Robert Hight, Richard Townsend and Shawn Langdon. In the finals, Johnson had the reaction time advantage over opponent Courtney Force, but he hazed the tires early into the run. Despite his best efforts, Force was able to power to the win with her 3.834-sec pass.
A runner-up finish propelled Johnson, and Terry and Doug Chandler’s Make-A-Wish team from tenth to fifth in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series points standings.
“The car out of the box was good. Then, we had the problems on Saturday with blowing it up big, but the guys rebounded and came back strong today. We had maybe a little luck the first two rounds but everyone was smoking the tires. We kept working hard and got those round wins and laid down a nice, solid run in the semis so I was confident going into the finals. I thought we had something for Courtney. But I’m just happy that the performance of the car is kind of coming back to us. We’re still new to the six-disc [clutch] and learning it. I think the guys made big strides this weekend.”
NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Points Standing:
128 points, ranked No. 5
Leads sixth ranked Jack Beckman by six points
Trails fourth ranked Robert Hight by five points