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Sarge's world: Shifting gears after close call in Seattle

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It's two down and one to go for the NHRA's infamous three-race Western Swing. This weekend, we're heading for the FRAM-Autolite Nationals at Infineon Raceway in beautiful Sonoma, Calif. If you've been following the recent NHRA tour results, you know we had a pretty good run up in Seattle last Sunday. In fact, we made it to the finals, but lost a close race to point leader Antron Brown. I'm really encouraged by the kind of consistency we've been showing of late. We're going to need to be that way as we draw closer to the Countdown to One, which begins in the middle of September at Charlotte. As a result of our final round advancement in Seattle, we were able to claim second place in the standings. Our goal over the next four races before the Countdown to One starts is to finish as high up in the order as possible so we're not starting the deal too much in the hole. Presently, we trail Antron by 137 points so overtaking him for the top spot may be a bit difficult. But, that's not to say we're not going to try real hard to make a run at him. Winning races can make a lead evaporate very quickly. It really would've been nice to close the deal in Seattle for our special guests: Lt. General Benjamin Freakley and Sergeant First Class Daniel Forsythe, who is a Bronze Star recipient and was that weekend's Hometown Hero. As for General Freakley, the team was excited to have him at the track again. He's such a huge supporter of our program and he motivates us in ways you can't imagine. We look forward to when his schedule will allow for another visit. Needless to say, with the Sonoma stop looming, we would like to end the Western Swing on a high note. Having captured the last two races at Infineon Raceway, we're definitely going for the "hat trick" this Sunday. Before I close this blog out, I would be remiss if I did not tell you how much fun I had at the ESPY Awards out in Los Angeles. While NASCAR's Jimmie Johnson ended up winning another Best Driver trophy, I still managed to enjoy my time with all of the other athletes and celebrities over the two days we were on site. It's amazing how many athletes from other sports follow what we do. I can't tell you how many of those athletes wanted to come out to a race in the near future. Many of them wondered if they could drive my dragster at one time or another. I told them if they could deal with covering 300 mph in a little less than four seconds, then they could take a shot. You should've seen some of the reactions I got after that statement. Anyway, I was honored to be nominated for the third straight year and was happy to be able to represent my sport at the event. With that, it's off to Wine Country. As usual, "The Sarge" salutes you all. We'll be back with you early next week post-Sonoma race before taking off for a couple of weekends. So y'all stay well and please remember our Army Strong Soldiers in your thoughts and prayers. Six-time world champion Tony "The Sarge" Schumacher pilots the U.S. Army Top Fuel dragster in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series. He will be providing a blog throughout the 2009 season.
Tagged: Jimmie Johnson

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