Brown adds to round win total with semifinal finish for Matco Tools team, moves to second in points after NHRA Southern Nationals
COMMERCE, Ga. (May 15, 2016) – For the fourth straight NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series event, Antron Brown and the Matco Tools/U.S. Army team has reached at least the semifinal round during Sunday’s championship eliminations.
That trend has moved Brown into second in Top Fuel standings, 64 behind leader Doug Kalitta, who eliminated the Matco Tools team led by crew chiefs Brian Corradi and Mark Oswald in the semifinals of the NHRA Southern Nationals at Atlanta Dragway.
“We had a great weekend out here,” Brown said. “As a whole team, we learned a lot. We definitely got our engine back. The car made great power this weekend and we figured out the issue that has been plaguing us this year. We just have to get the balance back right. It was a great learning weekend.
“We really wanted to take Doug Kalitta out because we could’ve been challenging for the points lead but the good part is we moved back into second. There’s a lot of racing left, and we’re just growing and getting better and better every race. That’s the main thing, we have to keep on improving.”
The NHRA Mello Yello Series has completed seven of 24 events in 2016 and it appears the Don Schumacher Racing Top Fuel teams are all gaining ground in their on-track performance.
“Our teammates, Tony (Schumacher) and Shawn (Langdon) are looking really good and we’re getting some symmetry between the teams. We’re looking great right now and we just want to keep that going. We almost had an all DSR final there, but we’ll just get after it in Topeka next week and hopefully we can make that happen.
“The main thing is that we are just being very efficient; efficient and consistent. We just have to do a couple little things different and we’ll be going to final rounds and turning those into wins.
“Our main focus is getting the DSR efficient so when the Countdown (to the Championship playoff) comes we can contend for a championship. That’s the game plan.”
The NHRA Mello Yello Series heads to Topeka for the NHRA Kansas Nationals that begins Friday.
Event winner: Doug Kalitta (Kalitta Motorsports)
No. 1 qualifier: Kalitta, 3.731 sec., 328.70 mph
ANTRON BROWN, Matco Tool/U.S. Army Top Fuel Dragster
Qualified: No. 5
SUNDAY CHAMPIONSHIP ELIMINATIONS
First round: BROWN (3.749 sec., 317,57 mph) def. Pat Dakin (3.820, 303.50)
Second round: BROWN (3.772, 318.02) def. Steve Torrence 3.772, 318.02)
Semifinals: Doug Kalitta (3.779, 324.20) def. BROWN (9.833, 72.21)
SATURDAY: 5.911 sec., 110.03 mph, (Session 3); 3.775, 319.45, (Session 4)
FRIDAY: 3.876, 314.68, (Session 1); 3.789, 321.27, (Session 2)
NHRA MELLO YELLO DRAG RACING SERIES STANDINGS
(Unofficial through Atlanta, wins in parenthesis; DSR DRIVERS IN CAPS)
1. Doug Kalitta (2) 586
2. ANTRON BROWN (1) 522
3. Brittany Force (2) 518
4. Steve Torrence (1) 474
5. JR Todd 418
6. Clay Millican 387
7. TONY SCHUMACHER 349
8. Richie Crampton 337
9. LEAH PRITCHETT (1) 308
10. Terry McMillen 293
11. SHAWN LANGDON 292