Tony Schumacher raced to a record ninth Top Fuel victory Sunday at the rain-delayed Mac Tools U.S. Nationals presented by Auto-Plus at Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis.
Mike Neff (Funny Car), Dave Connolly (Pro Stock) and Andrew Hines (Pro Stock Motorcycle) also were winners of the final regular season event in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series.
Schumacher moved past “Big Daddy” Don Garlits for the most Indy Top Fuel wins and into a tie with Pro Stock great Bob Glidden for most pro category wins at the world’s most prestigious drag race.
In the semi-finals, Schumacher defeated Shawn Langdon, and Spencer Massey defeated Antron Brown. In the final round, Schumacher powered his U.S. Army dragster to a 3.806 at 315.34 to hold off Spencer Massey, who trailed with a 3.828 at 319.37 in his FRAM/Prestone dragster.
In Funny Car, Neff defeated Matt Hagan, and Tim Wilkerson defeated Johnny Gray in the semi-finals. In the finals, Neff pushed his Castrol GTX Ford Mustang to a final-round performance of 4.079 at 311.05 to finish in front of Wilkerson’s Levi Ray & Shoup Shelby Mustang that finished in 4.152 at 286.13.
It was Neff’s second consecutive victory at this event, his third win of the season and the ninth of his career.
In Pro Stock, Connolly defeated Vincent Nobile, while Enders defeated V. Gaines in the semi-finals. In the finals, Connolly used a reaction time advantage to edge teammate Erica Enders in the Pro Stock final round.
Connolly covered the distance in 6.589 at 210.05 in his IDG Chevy Cobalt to finish just in front of Enders, who posted a quicker but losing 6.580 at 210.31 in her GK Motorsports Chevy Cobalt. It was Connolly’s third U.S. Nationals win and the 23rd of his career.
In Pro Stock Motorcycle, Hines defeated Hector Arana Jr., while Arana defeated Ed Krawiec in the semi-finals. In the finals, Hines rode his Screamin’ Eagle Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson to a 6.937 at 191.70 to take the easy win as Arana’s Lucas Oil Buell slowed at mid-track and finished in 7.456 at 157.54.
Hines earned his first Indy victory by outrunning Hector Arana. It was Hines’ fourth win of the season and 29th of his career.
NHRA’s six-race playoffs, the Full Throttle Countdown to the Championship, opened Sept. 14-16 with the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Nationals presented by Super Start Batteries at zMAX Dragway near Charlotte, N.C.