Everything You May Have Missed from the AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals

Everything You May Have Missed from the AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals

10/19/2020

It’s now been more than a year and counting since someone other than a Don Schumacher Racing Funny Car driver has walked away from an NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series event with the trophy.

Jack Beckman made it 12 consecutive Wallys and counting for DSR in the Funny Car class when he nosed out teammate Matt Hagan in the final of the AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals at Texas Motorplex near Dallas on Sunday.

The undefeated streak at this event in 2019 when Matt Hagan raced to the FallNationals winner’s circle. The last driver outside the DSR stable to win a Funny Car event was John Force Racing’s Robert Hight, who won Oct. 14, 2019 at Charlotte.

Hight and his JFR teammates are sitting out the 2020 season to retool for 2021.

DSR’s current run tops the previous team winning streak record, and it’s own record, of 10 races. That record was set in 2017 with the same DSR Funny Car driver lineup of Beckman, Hagan, Ron Capps and Tommy Johnson Jr. Each driver has won at least twice during the streak.

The win for Beckman was his third of 2020 and 33rd overall. He’s eighth on the all-time wins list in Funny Car, just two behind teammate Hagan and Don Prudomme. The win was Beckman’s first at Texas Motorplex.

“I got to stomp on the pedal, but this is truly a group effort,” Beckman said. “I have wanted to win Dallas since I first came here in 1985 and drove 500 miles with my buddy to come to Billy Meyer’s super track.

“I had a really good feeling most of the day. I felt like if it’s going to happen, it’s going to happen today. Coming up against Hagan and his guys in the final is a big deal. They’ve been dominant lately and to stop them in their tracks today and tighten the points chase was fantastic. This was maybe the best weekend ever.”

Beckman put this weekend right up there with his U.S. Nationals triumph in 2015.

“I mean doubling up at Indy in 2015 is going to be awfully hard to exceed, but I so wanted to win at Dallas.” Beckman said. “My dad (Bob Beckman) lives close to here and he’s been supporting me my whole career and he’s 83-years-old. It’s going to be extra special to give him that cowboy hat from the (Texas) Motorplex. It’s perfect.

“I don’t know that I’ve ever had a better weekend at a drag strip than this. The Infinite Hero team got the trophy and my dad gets the cowboy hat. (Sponsor) Doug Chandler, thanks for making all this possible.”

TORRENCE CLOSING IN ON NO. 3

Points leader Steve Torrence won for the second time in three years at Dallas and moved one step closer to a third consecutive Top Fuel title in the process.

Torrence’s win Sunday, over dad Billy Torrence, was No. 40 of his career, sixth all-time in Top Fuel. He’s nine back of Doug Kallita in that category. More important, he’s 51 points up on Kalitta in the championship.

Steve Torrence came into the weekend just two points up on Kalitta.

“We lost some ground today, but we have two races left to make that up,” said Kalitta. “The last race will be 30 points a round. We will be Houston and I am not sure how similar the conditions will be. This Mac Tools team was strong this weekend. We made some great runs today and we got aggressive in the semifinals. We will put this race behind us.”

HARTFORD SLOWS ENDERS IN PRO STOCK

Matt Hartford beat Greg Anderson in the Pro Stock final to earn his first win of 2020 and third of his NHRA career. Hartford beat points leader Erica Enders in the semifinal to keep the defending champion from extending her points lead even more going into the final two races of the season.

“The final was big because I’m now at three wins, but really the semifinal run (against Enders) was what set it apart for us,” Hartford said. “Erica is just so dominant on the tree and I just decided I was going to take my time, take a couple deep breaths and not be in a hurry. There was a lot on the line and to come back in the final round and win, it’s incredible to have another Wally. To hold the first ever Camping World Wally in Pro Stock, that never gets forgotten. For me, it’s just incredible. It wasn’t an easy road today, but we’ve had a good car all year long. To have the fans out here supporting us, it was great.”

9 Down, 2 to Go

Next stop for the 2020 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing is the rescheduled Mopar Express Lane NHRA SpringNationals Presented by Pennzoil Oct. 23-25 at Baytown, Texas., near Houston. After that, its the finale at Las Vegas, Oct. 30-Nov. 1.

Here’s the leaders in the points coming down the stretch:

Top Fuel

Funny Car

Pro Stock

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