Tony Schumacher wins NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals

BRISTOL, Tenn. (AP) Tony Schumacher raced to his first Top Fuel victory of the season Sunday in the Fitzgerald USA NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals.

Schumacher had a 3.946-second run at 313.58 mph to edge Mike Salinas in the final round, the 150th final of Schumacher’s career. He has six career victories at Bristol and 84 overall.

”We have had little things bite us this season, but we knew we had to overcome adversity and we knew we had a great car that was capable of winning,” Schumacher said. ”I’m proud of my team for sticking to our plan, and I know our team is going to be a factor for the rest of the season.”

Ron Capps won the Funny Car event for the second straight year, and Jeg Coughlin Jr. topped the Pro Stock field.

Capps won for the first time this season and 59th overall, edging Bob Tasca III with a 4.234 at 296.37 in a Chevrolet Camaro SS. Capps also gave Don Schumacher Racing its 300th nitro victory.

”This is a great facility, and when you roll into this place you get a special feeling,” Capps said. ”Getting to the Winner’s Circle at a track like this is even more special, because you feel like you really had to earn it, and this weekend I am proud of what my team accomplished in some tough conditions.”

Coughlin beat Greg Anderson with a 6.709 at 205.10 for his second victory of the season and 60th overall.

”It’s a testament to our team,” Coughlin said. ”We showed our way right to the checkers in Chicago and then came back here in Bristol with another win. ”It felt fantastic from behind the wheel.”