CARLSBAD, Calif. (May 13, 2009) – Ron Capps and the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Funny Car team will unveil a new one-off NAPA Adaptive One Brakes paint scheme on the car at this weekend's NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals at Bristol (Tenn.) Dragway.
Capps, who has led the Funny Car point standings in the 2009 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series since the first event of the year, is geared up to win a third national event at this facility and his fourth of the season as he aims for his first NHRA Funny Car championship this year. He has faith in his crew chief Ed "Ace" McCulloch and the NAPA Adaptive One Brakes Dodge Funny Car.
"We talked earlier in the season about success breeding confidence," said Capps, Bristol champion in 2001 and 2006. "There's been a lot of confidence built in me as a driver by the success the NAPA team has had so far. We've even brought out a new chassis at the start of a race weekend in the past and where a lot of teams might make check-out runs to make sure everything was OK with a brand-new car, we've run it straight to the finish line.
"One would think that the car going consistently down the track may not have anything to do with a driver's confidence at the Christmas Tree or even during the run, but it surely does in our sport. And we felt like we had the car to beat, and the change in attitude and approach of the team and Ace this year is all just a combination of getting an eraser out on the chalkboard and starting from scratch."
NAPA Adaptive One Brake Pads are designed to reduce noise and brake dust without sacrificing the "stop-on-a-dime" braking power. During the month of May, NAPA is offering a great rebate of up to $90 on a four-wheel brake job using NAPA’s Adaptive One Brake Pads and Rotors. For all the rebate details, consumers may go to AdaptiveOne.com.
"Any time you have a sponsor that wants to release a new product with your car being painted up to represent that is always nice," said Capps, who holds a solid 119-point margin over the next Funny Car in the standings. "It just shows how exciting the product is, first of all, to your sponsor. To be able to run the colors of NAPA Adaptive One Brakes not just as a sticker on the side of the car but as a completely different paint scheme, is a thrill for me.
"I think every team likes to win first time out with a new sponsor and/or paint scheme. We'd like to do that in Bristol," added Capps. "It's a great product. Who doesn't want the brakes on their personal car to not squeak or get dust all over their wheels? Everybody can relate to that."
RON CAPPS QUICK FACTS:
*No. 1 in 2009 Funny Car points, after winning three of the first seven races of the season (Pomona, Calif., Phoenix and Las Vegas)
* Leads Del Worsham by 119 points
* Round win-loss record in 2009 is 16-4
* Bristol winner in 2001 and 2006
* Qualified ninth in Bristol in 2008, lost second round to Mike Neff
* No. 8 in 2008 Funny Car points; two runner-up, five semifinal, four quarterfinal finishes, 13 first-rounds
* 2008 round win-loss record was 20-24
* Is tied with Tony Pedregon with longest qualifying streak among active Funny Car drivers: 46
* No. 4 in 2007 Funny Car point standings
* Led 2007 Funny Car point standings by as much as 154 points through 14 of the first 17 races of the season
* NAPA AUTO PARTS is primary sponsor for second straight season
* Joined Don Schumacher Racing in 2005
* Has three U.S. Smokeless Showdown titles: 1998, 1999 and 2002
* Third in 2006 final point standings
* Had class-best five wins in 2006
* Had three wins, four runner-up finishes in 2005 (St. Louis was his first
win for DSR in '05)
* 2005 Funny Car championship runner-up, eight points short of title
* Qualified No. 1 once in 2005, in Dallas; first time since Brainerd 2000
* Has nine career No. 1 qualifiers, none in 2006, '07 or '08. Two in 2009 so far
* A perennial fan favorite, Capps has driven and won in both Top Fuel and Funny Cars since he began his pro NHRA career in 1995
* His best season points finishes were seconds in Funny Car in 1998, 2000 and 2005
* He has 28 event wins in 58 final rounds to his credit (27 national event wins in Funny Car, one in Top Fuel)
* His career-best elapsed time (established during an event) is 4.694 seconds, set in 2005 in Dallas
* His career-best speed is 331.61 mph (Pomona 1, '07)
* Capps' career round win-loss record is 349-259
* Capps' career record against 14-time champion Force is 19-41 in round wins. He's won 11 of the last 16 meetings against Force, and has won five of the last seven first-round match-ups over Force
* Age 43 (June 20, 1965); born and raised in San Luis Obispo, Calif.
* Lives in Carlsbad, Calif., with wife Shelley and daughter Taylor (7/25/96) and son Caden (7/1/01)
* Has tested for IROC Series and competed in Skip Barber Formula Ford, Dirt Late Models, Mini-Sprints and Go-Karts
Pro qualifying sessions are scheduled for 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 15, and 12:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Saturday, May 16. Final eliminations begin at noon on Sunday, May 17.
Tickets are available for the NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals by calling Bristol Dragway at (423) 989-6900 or via www.bristoldragway.com.
ESPN2 and ESPN2 HD will televise two hours of qualifying coverage at 6 p.m. (ET) on Saturday May 16.
On Sunday, May 17, ESPN2 and ESPN2 HD will feature NHRA Race Day, a 30-minute pre-race show, at 11 a.m. (ET), and three hours and 30 minutes of eliminations coverage at 7 p.m. (ET).
Friday, May 15, 10-10:30 p.m. (ET) – AMC 15 / Transponder 2K
Saturday, May 16, 8:30-9 p.m. (ET) – AMC 15 / Transponder 2K
Sunday, May 17, 7-7:30 p.m. (ET) – AMC 15 / Transponder 2K
Downlink Frequency: AMC 15/ Transponder 2K (11740 MHz, Horizontal)