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Ron Capps needs first Maple Grove win to get back in Countdown hunt

Ron Capps speaking

BROWNSBURG, Ind. (Sept. 30, 2014) – Not only is the driver of the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger R/T Funny intent on getting closer to the top of the Countdown to the Championship playoff standings, but he wants to check Maple Grove off the short list of only two NHRA national event tracks where he has yet to win an event title.

Ron, whose team is led by crew chief Rahn Tobler, appreciates the history of the scenic facility and wants badly to own an NHRA Wally trophy from the track.

 “I’m looking forward to getting back to Reading. I love racing there but it’s one of only two tracks left where I haven’t won in my career,” he said.

Ron can’t explain why he hasn’t been able to get to the Maple Grove winner’s circle and has only advanced to two championship runs and none since 2000. A year ago, he advanced to the semifinals.

 “I wish I could explain it because then we could change our outcome there,” he said. “It’s a beautiful track and we’ve run well there but we just can’t close the deal. Tobler has run good in the past there so hopefully we can go there and make some magic and get a win.”

In addition to adding to his stockpile of 43 NHRA trophies, a more pressing matter is moving up from fifth in the six-race Countdown standings and cut the margin of 126 points he trails leader John Force.

The NAPA AUTO PARTS team qualified eighth last weekend at Gateway Motorsports Park near St. Louis but lost a great opportunity to gain ground when it lost to Force in the quarterfinals despite a solid 4.143-second run to Force’s 4.119, which was the best of the round. Although Force lost in the next round he was able to pad his lead over Ron by 20 points.

 “We lost more ground,” Ron said. “You get to the point where you feel like you’re running out of time, but we’re still in it. We’ll have the same mentality we had going to St. Louis and that is to just win.”

 Two events will remain in the Countdown after Maple Grove that ends a run of four events in four weekends. After a three-week break, the series races Oct. 31-Nov. 2 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and the finale Nov. 13-16 at Pomona, Calif.

NHRA Nationals at Maple Grove Raceway Schedule (ET) Friday: 2, 5 p.m., qualifying Saturday: 12, 2 p.m., qualifying Sunday: 11 a.m., championship eliminations ON ESPN2 Sunday: 4-5:30 p.m., qualifying Sunday: 8-11 p.m., championship eliminations

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Don Schumacher Racing (DSR), the winningest team in drag racing history, has raced to claimed more than 340 NHRA national event victories and 17 Mello Yello World Championship titles. Headquartered in Brownsburg, Indiana, DSR fields professional teams competing in both the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing series and Factory Stock Showdown, including the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Funny Car driven by 2016 World Champion Ron Capps.

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