NASCAR & Auto Racing

Schumacher sweeps NHRA's western swing

SONOMA, Calif. - Tony Schumacher completed a sweep of the three-race western swing of NHRA season, winning the Top Fuel competition at the Fram-Autolite NHRA Nationals Sunday.

Schumacher, who also won in Colorado and Washington, has eight victories overall this season.

The other winners were Robert Hight (Funny Car), Dave Connolly (Pro Stock) and Matt Guidera (Pro Stock Motorcycle).

"It's been a lot of fun, the last couple of races have just been outstanding," Schumacher said.

Schumacher's 3.886-second run at a top speed of 307.93 mph in his U.S. Army dragster defeated local-favorite Hillary Will (Eureka, Calif.) and her KB Racing team's 3.988 at 306.19 in the final.

Schumacher, who beat rival Rod Fuller and the Caterpillar team in the quarterfinals, clinched the No. 1 seed in Top Fuel and the 20-point bonus that comes with it when the points reset after the final regular season race, the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals Labor Day weekend in Indianapolis.

Schumacher became the sixth driver to sweep the western swing. The last was Greg Anderson in Pro Stock in 2004.

In Funny Car, Hight ran a 4.163 at 296.50 to defeat one of his mentors when he first started working for John Force Racing, Gary Densham, who ran a 4.222 at 289.14.

The win was the third straight for John Force Racing at Infineon Raceway, a streak that began in 2006 with the late Eric Medlen's win and continued in 2007 with John Force himself getting to the winner's circle.

In Pro Stock, Connolly moved past Warren Johnson and into the top 10 - the top-10 drivers qualify for the six-race playoff - with his 6.628 at 207.69 win over Jeg Coughlin.

In Pro Stock Motorcycle, Matt Guidera won for the second time this season aboard the Mohegan Sun Buell, with a 7.054 at 185.74 over Andrew Hines.

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