Top Fuel champ Brown takes on new gig as ‘Top Gear America’ host but day job driving Matco Tools dragster will remain his top priority
BROWNSBURG, Ind. (March 28, 2017) – Antron Brown is not one to sit still for long and now the three-time NHRA Top Fuel world champion is busier than ever with a new project – host on the new Top Gear America television show that will air through the British Broadcasting Company America (BBCA).
Brown, a native of New Jersey who lives near Indianapolis, will host Top Gear America with actor and racing enthusiast William Fichtner and auto journalist Tom “Wookie” Ford on each of eight hour-long episodes to begin airing later this year.
Top Gear America will review state-of-the-art vehicles, along with the vehicles from America’s car culture past. The show will put viewers in the passenger seat as they race the most incredible vehicles on the scenic highways and historic tracks of the American west.
“Somebody better pinch me,” Brown said of his new role as a TV host. “We’ve started filming and it’s just a blast. I won’t be going 330 mph like I do in Don Schumacher Racing’s Matco Tools/U.S. Army Top Fuel dragster but we’ll be in some awesome and crazy rides.
“I’ve been interviewed a lot but I’m a rookie at being a host.”
But Brown is ready to switch back to focusing on his 11,000-horsepower Matco Tools/U.S. Army dragster this weekend for the annual NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series event at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Two weeks ago, Brown with crew chiefs Brian Corradi and Mark Oswald reached the final round at the Gatornationals in Gainesville, Fla., where they were topped by Don Schumacher Racing teammate Tony Schumacher. Now the Matco team is ready to take it one step farther in Las Vegas where he has three career wins.
“It’s always one step at a time,” Brown said. “For us as a whole, we want to win every race that we go to. We qualified in the top-three at the first three races, we’ve been to the semis and the final at Gainesville and we really felt that was our race to win. The Army team just did an incredible job. We had something that bit us but we’re growing from it.
“You don’t get better by doing the same things, you only get better in life by doing things that are different. Brian and Mark, that’s what they do. We are always innovating and making new things and now we’re starting to see traction from it earlier. Last year it was later but this year we’re already seeing the benefits of it. We just have to keep grinding. This class is not going to be easy in Top Fuel this year, it never is. It gets harder every year but we’re ready to go out there and battle.”
ANTRON BROWN: Matco Tools/U.S. Army Top Fuel Dragster
Last event (March 17-19) Gainesville): Qualified No. 3, lost in final round to DSR teammate Tony Schumacher
2016 Las Vegas 1: Qualified No. 3, won in final round over Troy Buff
2016 Las Vegas 2: Qualified No. 4, lost in semifinals to J.R. Todd
Career at Las Vegas 1: Wins 2 (2011, 2016); Runner-ups 3 (2013, 2012, 2008, 2001-PSM); Poles 3 (2014, 2013, 2010,
Career at Las Vegas: Wins 3 (2011, 2013, 2016); Runner-ups 4 (2013, 2012, 2008, 2001); Poles 4 (2015, 2014, 2013, 2010)
Pts Events Wins Rup Semi Qtr 1st rd Poles DNQ W/L
2017 3rd 3 0 1 1 1 0 0 0 6-3
2016 1st 24 7 4 65 6 2 3 0 55-17
CAREER 361 61 (45 TF/16 PSB) 47 74 93 80 47 (36/11) 3 623-297
Best Time, Speed: 3.679 sec., (2016, Brainerd; and first below 3.7, 2015, Brainerd); 331.12 mph (2015, Brainerd)
2017 NHRA MELLO YELLO DRAG RACING SERIES TOP FUEL STANDINGS
(Official after Gainesville, Fla.; 3 of 24 events; wins in parenthesis; DSR drivers in CAPS)
1. LEAH PRITCHETT (2) 300 —–
2. TONY SCHUMACHER (1) 279 -21
3. ANTRON BROWN 243 -57
4. Doug Kalitta 220 -80
5. Brittany Force 202 -98
6. Steve Torrence 185 -115
7. Troy Coughlin Jr. 143 -157
8. Shawn Reed 136 -164
9. Clay Millican 133 -167
10. Scott Palmer 116 -184