BROWNSBURG, Ind. – For Antron Brown, more than tree blossoms and flowers bloom in the spring.
For the driver of the Aaron’s Dream Machine/Matco Tools Top Fuel Dragster, spring is more than a time to sow crops; it is the time to plant seeds that will sprout an NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series world championship.
The 36-year-old native of New Jersey is ranked third in points going into this weekend’s SummitRacing.com Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Brown, who finished last season third in points, won six events titles and one of those was the spring race at Las Vegas. The year before, he was the No. 1 qualifier and event runner-up in 2008.
“It’s a great racing facility and the track surface is always at the top of the list,” Brown said. “It’s a big race for us.
“We enjoy being in Las Vegas and really like seeing all the fans at the New York New York on Thursday night for the Fanfest. There are a lot of distractions out there but we just kick back and stay the course.”
It will be the first time Brown’s Don Schumacher-owned Top Fuel dragster sports the colors of the Aaron’s Dream Machine.
“Yeah, we’ll have the ‘Lucky Dog’ on board with us and we always do good when Aaron’s is on our car.
“Me and the ‘Dog’ will just lay back, relax and race. We went to three final rounds with the Aaron’s colors last year and hopefully we can repeat that.”
Led by crew chiefs Mark Oswald and Brian Corradi, the Don Schumacher Racing driver won his 16th Top Fuel title on Feb. 19 at Firebird International Raceway near Phoenix that pushed his career total to 32, which includes 16 in the NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle class.
He also advanced to the championship round of the series opener at Pomona, Calif.
At Las Vegas Motor Speedway: Wins (1) Spring 2011; runner-ups (1): Spring 2008.
This week: On Monday, Antron flew to El Paso, Texas, to speak at a Matco Tools TechEd program on Tuesday at Western Technical College. From there, he headed to Las Vegas to appear Thursday on Fox 5 morning news and at the NHRA event press conference.
The week before was some special family time including his youngest son Adler’s fourth birthday that included a special appearance by Spiderman (a close friend of DSR machinist and fabricator Tom Patsis) before flying to Dallas to spend that Tuesday and Wednesday at an Aaron’s managers meeting where he was joined by DSR teammate Antron Brown and NASCAR racers Michael Waltrip and Mark Martin. On Thursday, he headed for Torrance, Calif., to participate in Toyota Motorsports Day at Toyota Motor Sales, Inc. on March 22.
LAS VEGAS EVENT SCHEDULE
THURSDAY, March 29
Las Vegas Fan Fest on “Brooklyn Bridge” in front of New York New York Hotel and Casino.
FRIDAY, March 30
2:30 p.m., 5 p.m.: Top Fuel, Funny Car qualifying rounds
SATURDAY, March 31
12 p.m.., 3 p.m.: Top Fuel, Funny Car qualifying rounds
SUNDAY, April 1
10 a.m.: Pre-race ceremonies
11 a.m.: Championship eliminations begin
ESPN2/ESPN2HD TELEVISION COVERAGE
SATURDAY, March 30
7:30-9:30 p.m. (EDT): Qualifying coverage (delayed)
SUNDAY, April 1
7-10 p.m. (ET): Championship eliminations
2012 NHRA FULL THROTTLE DRAG RACING STANDINGS
(through March 11; DSR drivers in BOLD)
1. TONY SCHUMACHER 283
2. Morgan Lucas 269
3. ANTRON BROWN 265
4. SPENCER MASSEY 229
5. Shawn Langdon 223
6. Clay Millican 168
7. Doug Kalitta 156
8. Bob Vandergriff Jr. 141
9. Steve Torrence 125
10. Brandon Bernstein 120
About Aaron’s, Inc.
Aaron’s, Inc. (NYSE: AAN), the nation’s leader in the sale and lease ownership of residential furniture, computers, consumer electronics, home appliances and accessories. Aaron’s Inc., which celebrates its 57th anniversary this year, has over 1,940 company-operated and franchised stores in 48 states and Canada. Founded in 1955 by entrepreneur and current Chairman R. Charles Loudermilk Sr. and headquartered in Atlanta, Aaron’s has been publicly traded since 1982. For more information, visit www.aarons.com.
About Matco Tools
Matco Tools manufactures, distributes and services premium quality automotive equipment, tools, and tool storage for the professional technician. The company has more than 60 years of national brand experience in the automotive equipment industry and a vast product line of more than 13,000 of the highest quality, innovative tools and accessories. The company’s franchise offering has no franchise, royalty, or advertising fees. Initial corporate and ongoing local training create and build outstanding value for the franchisee’s business. For more information on Matco Tools products or franchise opportunities, visit www.matcotools.com.