CROWNING GLORY

THE AUTO CLUB FI­NALS NEVER DIS­AP­POINTS

Drag Racer - - Contents - Text by Pete Ward Photos by Gary Nas­tase/Auto Im­agery

The Auto Club Fi­nals Never Dis­ap­points

LOWER THE CUR­TAIN ON YET AN­OTHER MEM­O­RABLE NHRA SEA­SON. OF ALL THE ELIMINATORS, THE LOUD­EST AP­PLAUSE AGAIN GOES TO THE FUNNY CAR CAT­E­GORY.

/RON CAPPS fi­nally sealed the deal after four world champ RUs. He se­cured the crown on Satur­day, amass­ing suf­fi­cient points to sur­pass DSR team­mate Matt Ha­gan. Capps was dom­i­nant for most of the sea­son. In a seven-race span he scored three wins, two RUs and one semi ap­pear­ance. He to­taled five wins to ring up a ca­reer to­tal of 50. This marked crew chief Rahn Tobler’s fourth cham­pi­onship.

/ABOVE. ANTRON BROWN con­tin­ued his dom­i­nance of T/F, se­cur­ing a third cham­pi­onship in five years (two back to back) at the Las Ve­gas Toy­ota race prior to Pomona. The DSR star won seven na­tional events, three of which were dur­ing the count­down.

/TOP. THE PRO MOD ti­tle was de­cided at the Ve­gas Toy­ota event. Peren­nial “re­tiree” Rickie Smith se­cured his third cham­pi­onship over last year’s ti­tle­holder, Troy Cough­lin. Smith proved the big motor/ni­trous combo is still vi­able in do­ing battle with his turbo and blower com­peti­tors.

/RIGHT. YET AN­OTHER WOMAN claims an NHRA world ti­tle! Mia Tedesco be­came the first woman Su­per Gas champ, claim­ing the honor at the fall Div. 7 Ve­gas event. In ad­di­tion to the Su­per Gas na­tional ti­tle, she also won the Div. 3 S/G cham­pi­onship and the North Cen­tral Re­gion Top Alky Drag­ster ti­tle.

/ JEFF STRICK­LAND be­came just the sec­ond driver in NHRA his­tory to win two na­tional cham­pi­onships in the same sea­son. Pi­lot­ing a COPO Ca­maro for the Gray Mo­tor­sports team, he cap­tured Stock Elim­i­na­tor Satur­day at the fi­nals, adding it to the Top Drag­ster ti­tle he se­cured seven days prior in Ve­gas (near lane).

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