Motorsports

Greg Anderson Wins Season-Opening NHRA Winternationals

Greg Anderson and the Summit Racing team started the 2012 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing season in perfect fashion, taking home the Pro Stock title at Sunday’s 52nd annual NHRA Winternationals in Pomona, CA.  Starting from the fifth position, Anderson strung together strong performances to defeat Larry Morgan, Allen Johnson and teammate Jason Line in the early rounds.

Anderson used his fourth .02 reaction time of the day to leave nearly in tandem with Jeg Coughlin in the finals, and then powered through the quarter-mile in 6.549 seconds (210.87 miles-per-hour) to secure the win. It was the 71st national event win of Anderson’s career, fifth at the Winternationals and 10th at the Auto Club Raceway at Pomona.

“It was a wonderful Sunday for the Summit Racing team,” Anderson said.  “It seemed as if Jason and I had the two strongest cars today, and unfortunately because of where I qualified, we ended up having to race in the semifinals instead of the final, but we’re not about to complain. Once we both won in the second round, we knew we had a guaranteed berth for one of our cars in the final, and it turned out to be me, and I was able to close the deal, stopping that big yellow Mopar.”

Jason Line
In the first two rounds of Sunday’s NHRA Winternationals in Pomona, CA, things seemed to be going according to plan for Jason Line and the Summit Racing team.  After receiving his 2011 Full Throttle championship jacket and ring during pre-race ceremonies, Line climbed behind the wheel of his 212-mile-per-hour Pontiac and quickly displayed the form that had earned him the top-qualifying position the day before. Line defeated Grace Howell and Shane Gray in the first and second rounds, respectively, to set up a semi-final match-up against teammate Anderson.

With a berth in the championship round on the line, the teammates delivered one of the closest races of the day, leaving almost together and posting nearly identical elapsed times.  Unfortunately, Line’s hopes of defending his win at this event from a year ago were cut short, as his 6.547-second, 211.83-mile-per-hour pass was narrowly eclipsed by Anderson’s 6.545, 211.03-mile-per-hour pass.  Although disappointed by the early exit, Line was mostly pleased with his race car’s performance, and was already looking forward to next weekend’s race in Arizona.

Funny Car
John Force raced to his 134th career Funny Car victory Sunday at the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Winternationals presented by Super Start Batteries at historic Auto Club Raceway at Pomona.

Force, 62, used a holeshot start to claim his sixth win at this event and 15th at this track with a performance of 4.080 seconds at 315.64-mile-per-hour in his Castrol GTX High Mileage Ford Mustang. Runner-up Mike Neff finished in 4.036 at 316.82 miles-per-hour in his Castrol GTX Mustang.

Top Fuel
Spencer Massey, who finished second in the points standings last year, opened the new season in first place by outrunning Antron Brown in the final round to take his seventh career Top Fuel victory and first at Pomona. Massey posted a 3.750 at 325.77 miles-per-hour in his FRAM/Prestone dragster to hold off Brown’s charging Matco Tools dragster, which trailed with a 3.794 at 320.43 mile-per-hour.

The NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series continues next weekend (February 17-19) at Firebird International Raceway near Phoenix with the NHRA Arizona Nationals.

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