BROWNSBURG — For only the second time in its 58-year history, the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Raceway was postponed from the traditional Labor Day slot and for four drivers, it was worth the wait.
Top Fuel Dragster driver Tony Schumacher tied legendary driver Bob Glidden with nine career wins at the prestigious U.S. Nationals with his victory and broke his tie with "Big Daddy" Bob Garlits. Schumacher edged out his Don Schumacher Racing teammate Spencer Massey in the Top Fuel Dragster final round by leaving first on a run of 3.806 seconds at 315.34 mph.
“To leave on Spencer feels great,” Schumacher said of his .022 better reaction time. “I didn’t feel like I was stellar on the lights but my goal for the day was to leave on everybody and I did that.”
Tying Glidden and and passing Garlits to earn his ninth U.S. Nationals victory is an achievement that Schumacher truly appreciated.
“I really don’t want to feel like we’re taking anything away from (Glidden), he had a great record in a different time period and he accomplished so much,” Schumacher said. “Someday people are going to pass me too, that’s just the way it is. But what that man did was so different. We just drive the cars today; it’s a whole different world. Those guys built it, drove the tractor trailers and innovated the sport.”
The Brownsburg-based DSR team’s strength was on full display as three of their drivers were in the final four of the Top Fuel Dragster competition. Schumacher defeated Al-Anabi Racing’s Shawn Langdon and Massey dropped 2011 U.S. Nationals winner and teammate Antron Brown.
Mike Neff became a back-to-back Funny Car U.S. Nationals champion by beating 2003 winner Tim Wilkerson in the final round. Neff’s John Force Racing Castrol GTX Ford Mustang went 311.05 mph in 4.079 seconds, giving the Indianapolis resident two straight U.S. Nationals victories.