Keeping Pace

Dixon looks to rebound after rare early exit

Larry Dixon drives in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series behind the wheel of a Top Fuel Dragster. (The Spokesman-Review)
Larry Dixon drives in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series behind the wheel of a Top Fuel Dragster. (The Spokesman-Review)

Larry Dixon is the defending Top Fuel champion at Norwalk; last year, he was the No. 1 qualifier and defeated Steve Chrisman, Clay McMillan, Antron Brown and Brandon Bernstein on his way to victory circle.

Courtesy: NHRA Media Relations

Norwalk, OH-Larry Dixon enters the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals in first place in the NHRA Full Throttle Top Fuel point standings. He leads second-place Tony Schumacher by 123 points. Last weekend in Bristol, Tenn., Dixon was the No. 3 qualifier but lost to Morgan Lucas in the first round of eliminations.

 

 

Dixon is the defending Top Fuel champion at Norwalk; last year, he was the No. 1 qualifier and defeated Steve Chrisman, Clay McMillan, Antron Brown and Brandon Bernstein on his way to victory circle. He is one of just three drivers to win a Top Fuel race at the suburban Ohio track.

 

 

Dixon has advanced to at least the semifinals in nine of the 12 events so far this season. He has six wins in the season’s first 12 races: Pomona, Calif., Baytown, Texas, Las Vegas, Atlanta Dragway, Joliet, Ill. and Englishtown, N.J.

 

 

Dixon has been an excellent qualifier this season having qualified in the top three at 11 of the 12 races. Dixon’s average qualifying position so far this year is 2.75. He has been the No. 1 qualifier three times this season and 43 times in his career.

 

 

Dixon has raced Tony Schumacher in eliminations seven times this season; Dixon leads the season series 4-3. In each of their seven meetings this season, the winning driver has gone on to win the event.

 

 

“We probably used our mulligan in Bristol,” said Dixon. “The Al-Anabi dragster is still a great car, and we have a great team; we just didn’t have a good outing. The great thing about this team is the talent we have that allows us to diagnose a problem, assess it and then fix it. It’s exciting to see the great minds go to work. As we write this, Alan (Johnson) and Jason (McCulloch) are working on things to make sure we have a better outing this weekend. So from my standpoint, everything is in good hands, and we’ll get to Norwalk in better shape than we were in when we left Bristol.

 

 

“As the season goes on there are peaks and valleys within it. Bristol was one of our valleys, and when it’s all said and done, you hope you have more peaks than valleys. So far, we have six wins and two first-round losses. I think we’ll all take two more first-round losses if they come with six more wins.

 

 

“The big thing is the round wins. That’s what will keep us up in the points. I look at how many rounds are left in the regular season and how many rounds we have on other teams. Looking at the big points picture, the further we go on in the regular season, we are clinching spots higher up in the countdown so that’s all good, very good. We have to keep working hard to maintain our performance, and I am confident everyone on our Al-Anabi team is doing that.”




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Keeping Pace

Motorsports correspondent Doug Pace keeps up with motorsports news and notes from around the region.






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