Photos by Patrick N. Clement • Text based on Dodge materials
Mopar-powered “Fast” Jack Beckman lived up to his nickname, beating 14-time Funny Car champion John Force to the finish line in the rain-delayed final of the 26th annual NHRA Arizona Nationals on Monday, Feb. 22.
In a rain-delayed Monday race, Jack Beckman collected his ninth NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series national-event win in his 18th career final round, at Firebird International Raceway in Phoenix, Ariz.
Driving the Mopar®-powered Valvoline/Mail Terminal Services Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car, honoring the U.S. Troops overseas with its “To Afghanistan With Love” theme, Beckman produced a stellar run of 4.121 seconds at 301.13 mph to defeat Force’s tire-smoking 6.316/106.24, earning his first win of the 2010 season and his second at the venue (2008).
“This victory was special for a couple of reasons,” said Beckman. “We overcame a lot of adversity this weekend; we weathered the storm and beat John Force in the final.”
Beckman is now second in the NHRA Funny Car point standings, with Don Schumacher Racing teammates Ron Capps and Matt Hagan listed at third and fifth, respectively. Next up is the 41st annual NHRA Gatornationals in Gainesville, Fla., March 13-15, 2010.
Mopar Dodge Challenger Drag Paks have proven a force to be reckoned with in NHRA competition. Irv Johns drove his Hoosier HEMI Drag Pak (above) to the No. 1 Qualifier spot in Stock Eliminator at the season-opening NHRA Winternationals; one week later Joey Wilkes drove Johns’ car to yet another No. 1 Qualifier spot at the NHRA Arizona Nationals. (Sorry, no photos available.)
Team Mopar driver Allen Johnson qualified No. 4 and advanced to the quarterfinals in his 2010 Pro Stock Mopar Dodge Avenger at the NHRA Arizona Nationals in Phoenix, Ariz., before the remaining elimination rounds were postopned until qualifying at the 41st annual Tire Kingdom NHRA Gatornationals at Gainesville Raceway. Johnson knocked out Larry Morgan in the first round on Sunday, Feb. 21, before the delay.
The unfinished rounds will be completed during the second, third and fourth rounds of qualifying for the event in two weeks at the historic Florida dragstrip. The quarterfinal pairs will be matched up during the second round of qualifying Friday, March 12, with the semifinal pairs matched up during third round of qualifying and the final round matched up during the final round of qualifying Saturday, March 13. The runs will occur during the scheduled qualifying sessions of the event and the times posted during those runs will count toward qualifying for the event.
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