Capps delivers solid test for NAPA AUTO PARTS and birthday present for crew chief Richards

Photos courtesy of Mark J. Rebilas.

The 2012 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing season is unofficially under way now that Don Schumacher Racing has returned to its Brownsburg headquarters with reams of information obtained during testing last week in South Florida.

DSR truck driving tandems hauled race cars and mobile technical trailers home from South Florida to be back in the spacious DSR shop to begin getting ready for the 2,047-mile jaunt to the West Coast in about two weeks.

Ron Capps delivered a very happy birthday gift to crew chief Tim Richards with nearly a dozen productive test runs from Jan. 18 through Saturday at Palm Beach International Raceway in Jupiter, Fla., in preparation for the Feb. 9-12 NHRA Winternationals in Pomona, Calif.

On Saturday, Richards celebrated his birthday after the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger R/T produced an early run of 4.092 seconds and 308.92 mph for its best effort during the Florida visit.

Capps even liked Friday night's wake-up call when his car veered sharply to the left near the finish line when the engine dropped a cylinder and he had to steer it back to the center of the lane.

Capps said "That's what's great about making side-by-side runs in testing. It gets you ready for the season and gets your mind back in the groove.

"That reminded me of how quick you can get in trouble in these cars. You've got to be ready.

"It was a great week, from Tuesday when I was in Charlotte filming a new NAPA AUTO PARTS commercial with my wife Shelley and then flying down here and spending four days with the team."

Ron Capps '11 Pts Titles Finals Poles DNQ '11 Record
6th 2/33 3/36 1/11 1/16 30-19

2012 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series Schedule

52nd annual Pomona, Calif. Feb. 9-12
28th annual Phoenix Feb. 17-19
43rd annual Tire Kingdom Gatornationals, Gainesville, Fla. March 8-11
13th annual Las Vegas March 30-April 1
3rd annual Charlotte, N.C. April 13-15
25th annual Houston April 27-29
32nd annual Commerce, Ga. May 4-6
24th annual Topeka, Kan. May 18-20
3rd annual Englishtown, N.J. May 31-June 3
12th annual Bristol, Tenn. June 15-17
15th annual Chicago June 28-July 1
6th annual Norwalk, Ohio July 5-8
33rd annual Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals , Denver July 20-22
25th annual FRAM/Autolite NHRA Nationals, Sonoma, Calif. July 27-29
25th annual Seattle Aug. 3-5
31st annual Brainerd, Minn. Aug. 16-19
58th annual U.S. Nationals Aug. 29-Sept. 3

NHRA Full Throttle Countdown to the Championship

5th annual Charlotte, N.C. Sept. 14-16
27th annual Dallas Sept. 20-23
Inaugural St. Louis Sept. 28-30
28th annual Reading, Pa. Oct. 4- 7
12th annual Big O Tires NHRA Nationals, Las Vegas Oct. 25-28
48th annual Pomona, Calif. Nov. 8-11