Final Round Effort by Ron Capps at Route 66 to Pay Dividends
JOLIET, Ill. (July 10, 2016) – Ron Capps appreciates crew chief Rahn Tobler being focused on bigger picture that is the 2016 NHRA Mello Yello Racing Series Funny Car world championship.
Capps, the current Funny Car points leader, was mildly disappointed that his Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund/NAPA AUTO PARTS team advanced to Sunday’s championship round of the NHRA Route 66 Nationals but was unable to beat Don Schumacher Racing teammate Jack Beckman for NAPA’s fifth title of the season.
But it’s not too upsetting when you were the quickest in both of Friday’s qualifying sessions and qualified fourth after having won three of the past five Mello Yello events.
“I’ll keep saying how much I love driving this NAPA Dodge,” he said. “It’s the best Funny Car I’ve driven in my 19 years of racing.
“Tobler used our runs on Saturday to break-in some new clutch discs for our rotation that will help us in the Countdown (to the Championship). That will pay off for us. On the run against Jack, it just got to be too much to control. This car is such an animal that you have to really work at keeping it under control.
“We sure wanted to win it but losing to a DSR teammate isn’t the worst thing that could have happened. We’ll be ready for the Denver in a couple weeks, and the Western Swing is the best part of the season for me because I’ll get to spend a lot of time between races with my family and friends from San Luis Obispo (Calif.).”
The Western Swing begins in two weeks with the Mile-High Nationals near Denver and is the first stop on a three-week trek that includes stops at Sonoma Raceway near San Francisco followed by a trip to Seattle.
Sunday had added importance to Capps as he earned the 600th elimination round win of his career and the milestone was accomplished with the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund paint scheme.
— NAPA Racing (@NAPARacing) July 10, 2016
“It means so much to our team when we get to have the Intrepid Fallen Heroes logo on our car. It’s very special to me to have a sponsor like NAPA AUTO PARTS that devotes every July to raising funds to help our American heroes.
“It was special to have won with that car (two weeks ago) at Norwalk, and to go all four rounds today to get Intrepid Heroes a lot of exposure on our Fox Sports 1 telecasts. We were able to get this special cause on TV for all eight rounds. That means a lot to everyone on our team.”
2016 Route 66 Nationals Results
Event winner: Jack Beckman (Don Schumacher Racing)
No. 1 qualifier: Matt Hagan (Don Schumacher Racing) 3.882 sec.-track record, 331.12 mph
Ron Capps, Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund/NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger R/T
Qualified: No. 4
First round: CAPPS (3.927 sec., 323.12 mph) def. John Force (4.007, 319.82)
Second round: CAPPS (3.940, 321.27) def. Bob Tasca III (4.437, 201.97)
Semifinals: CAPPS (4.003, 314.02) def. Matt Hagan (10.888, 77.35)
Final: Jack Beckman (3.955, 324.05) def. CAPPS (4.522, 194.74)
Friday: 3.91, 323.19 sec., 321.81 mph, (Session 1); 3.888, 328.78, (Session 2)
Saturday: 3.936, (Session 3); 3.896, 326.08, (Session 4)
2016 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Funny Car Standings
After 13 of 24 events
|1||Ron Capps (4)||1068|
|2||Jack Beckman (1)||942|
|3||Courtney Force (1)||892|
|4||Matt Hagan (2)||828|
|5||Tommy Johnson Jr. (1)||803|
|6||Robert Hight (1)||799|
|8||Tim Wilkerson (2)||760|
|10||Alexis DeJoria (1)||697|