Mopar®/Dodge Notes & Quotes: Dodge Nationals, Reading, PA

6 years ago Racing

Mopar®/Dodge Notes & Quotes: Dodge Nationals, Reading, PA

Ron Capps, NAPA
No. 3 Qualifier – 3.877 seconds at 327.43 mph

“What a deal today. We fell behind a little bit, we got lucky a little bit in the first round, but we feel like we make our luck. The harder we work, the luckier we get for sure.

“Every time I’ve driven through the gate here, I say, ‘I love you, I love you, I love you, Maple Grove. Give me some love back,’ and I’ve always left here a little short. Getting the points lead back was secondary to winning here. It was an ecstatic feeling in the shutdown area.”

Matt Hagan, Mopar® 80th/Express Lane Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car

No. 2 Qualifier – 3.874 seconds at 335.82 mph

“We went some rounds today, we got out of the first round. That was big. But we’ve just had awful, awful luck. If we hadn’t had bad luck, we wouldn’t have any. I don’t know how you change your luck, but we’ve just been having some mistakes here and there and little things are just eating us alive. We had a cable in the parachute break off and put the chutes out. The car’s running good; we’ve had a great racecar. We just can’t make it work on race day. So we’ll get back after it again next weekend and see what we can do. We’ll see if we can make up some ground.”

Leah Pritchett, Mopar 80th Anniversary Top Fuel Dragster 

No. 6 Qualifier – 3.741 seconds at 328.14 mph

“We got the short end of the stick on the luck meter. The Mopar team and guys are doing a phenomenal job. I think one of the biggest successes of this weekend is finding what’s wrong with our racecar gremlin-wise and we showed it today. We feel comfortable that we finally have our hot rod back.

“We’re right there on par with all of our competition in the hot weather and still believe we’ve got one of the best racecars in the cool weather, which shines a very bright light. We’re looking forward to St. Louis. This weekend for Mopar, we had all the power and put it to the track.”

Jack Beckman, Infinite Hero Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car

No. 5 Qualifier – 3.914 seconds at 330.55 mph

“I’m not going to candy-coat it. It’s 100 percent driver error. It was my worst light of the year. It was a very inopportune time to have my worst light of the year. We had a great car. I’ve always said we may not be the quickest car in hero conditions (cool weather), but throw a little bit of heat on the track and this Infinite Hero car’s right at the top of the heap. We showed it today. I let the team down. That’s a bitter feeling. That’s tough, knowing everybody did their best and if I’d have done any other light this year, [I] would have won that race. So I’m going to shake it off, I’m going to think positive, we are going to take this thing to St. Louis with a winning mindset and see if we can get the trophy there.”

Tommy Johnson Jr., Make-A-Wish Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car
No. 11 Qualifier – 3.957 seconds at 326.00 mph

“We’ve got some issues with the clutch and we’ve just struggled to get a handle on the clutch and the racetrack. It was a difficult weekend and the guys kept working hard to try and fix it. If we’re going to have a shot at the championship, we have to fix it. I’m sure (crew chief) John (Collins) and (assistant) Rip (Reynolds) and all the guys will really regroup this week and see if we can’t pinpoint the problem. We’ve just got to win out. The championship is still doable but it’s going to take at least four finals and we need to win them to get back on track.”

Tony Schumacher, U.S. Army Top Fuel Dragster

No. 5 Qualifier – 3.736 seconds at 330.23 mph

“We have a really good U.S. Army car and, unfortunately, we’ve just had something happen at the wrong time and it put us in positions Sunday where we are facing cars in the second round that we should be racing in the semifinal or final. If we can qualify inside the top three, chances at winning increase. I know right now the focus is going to be other drivers as far as the Countdown goes, but if you look back over history the past couple of decades, more often than not, the U.S. Army team has been right there until the end of the title hunt.”

Pietro Gorlier, Head of Parts and Service (Mopar) FCA – Global

“It’s very exciting for Mopar to claim victory at a race sponsored by the Dodge brand. Congratulations to Ron Capps and his entire Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car team on this important win at the Dodge NHRA Nationals. We’re looking forward to seeing even more HEMI® power in the winner’s circle throughout the fall months as we chase another title in the Countdown to the Championship playoffs.”

Up Next: NHRA Midwest Nationals

The Countdown to the Championship playoffs continue next week with a trip to the St. Louis area for the sixth annual NHRA Midwest Nationals at Gateway Motorsports Park. Last season, Jack Beckman bested teammate Tommy Johnson Jr. to win an all-Mopar Funny Car final round. Mopar teammate Matt Hagan also claims both ends of the Funny Car track record, turning in a pass of 3.883 seconds at 330.47 mph in 2015.

Ron Capps has won at Gateway three times in Funny Car, with Beckman having claimed two victories at the track. Last year’s Top Fuel runner-up, Mopar driver Tony Schumacher, has also won at the facility twice.

The NHRA Midwest Nationals will take place from September 29 to October 1, and will also feature the fifth and final Factory Stock Showdown of 2017. The entire event will receive coverage on FOX Sports 1, with LIVE coverage of the elimination rounds scheduled for the network at 2 p.m. ET on Sunday, October 1.

For more information on Mopar and Dodge in NHRA, check out the Mopar brand’s official blog,

2017 NHRA Championship – Point Standings After Round 20 of 24

(Season Wins in Parentheses)

NHRA Funny Car

  1. Ron Capps, Dodge Charger R/T (7) – 2,273
  2. Robert Hight (3) – 2,265
  3. Courtney Force – 2,234
  4. Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger R/T (3) – 2,183
  5. Jack Beckman, Dodge Charger R/T (2) – 2,173
  6. Tommy Johnson Jr., Dodge Charger R/T (1) – 2,159
  7. J.R. Todd (2) – 2,135
  8. John Force (1) – 2,116
  9. Tim Wilkerson – 2,098
  10. Cruz Pedregon – 2,065

NHRA Top Fuel

  1. Steve Torrence (7) – 2,259
  2. Doug Kalitta (1) – 2,237
  3. Brittany Force (2) – 2,236
  4. Antron Brown (4) – 2,208
  5. Tony Schumacher, Mopar HEMI (1) – 2,174
  6. Clay Millican (1) – 2,171
  7. Leah Pritchett, Mopar HEMI (4) – 2,162
  8. Terry McMillen – 2,083
  9. Scott Palmer – 2,074
  10. Shawn Langdon – 2,068




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