CAPPS SENT HOME EARLY IN DALLAS, FALLS TO FIFTH IN POINTS
ENNIS, Texas (Sept. 23, 2007) - Ron Capps dropped to fifth from third in the Countdown to Four point standings today after being dismissed by Ashley Force in the opening round of Funny Car eliminations at the O'Reilly NHRA Fall Nationals at the Texas Motorplex.
Under cloud cover, Capps beat Force off the line in the Brut Revolution Dodge Charger R/T, recording a .080 reaction time (.000 is perfect) to Force's .102. But it was Force first across the finish stripe, winning the round with a 4.786-second elapsed time at 319.52 mph. Capps followed 34 feet behind with a 4.880/318.54.
Ashley Force then defeated Del Worsham, but withdrew from competition when her father John Force was taken to the hospital following a collision with Kenny Bernstein in the Funny Car second round.
"The Brut Revolution Dodge just didn't run in the middle as hard as we wanted it to," said Capps. "These fuel cars, especially here at this track when the weather gets good and the track condition gets better, with no sun on it, have to run hard in the middle. For whatever reason we didn't do that.
"And Ace (crew chief Ed McCulloch) is trying to figure out why it didn't run harder in the middle clutch-wise. We're going to stay and test tomorrow. We think we may have found the problem, which could have been the reason it hasn't run good the last few races.
"We thought it was a case of just getting used to this new chassis. We struggled in qualifying, that's a fact," added Capps, who was No. 12 qualifier. "And Ashley and Guido (Dean Antonelli, Ashley Force's crew chief) went down the track every run.
"We were sort of an underdog not having lane choice going into today, but I still expected to win. I knew Ace was getting after it in the middle of the track, more than we had, and it still didn't respond.
"I saw the whole back of her car at half track. She pulled around me and, in these Dodges, when you see somebody out of the window and you see the back of their car, that means they're way out in front.
"Ace is adamant about fixing this problem because we're going to go to Richmond, Va., and I guarantee you it's going to be cool conditions there and it will be fast, like last year. We hear there is cloud cover coming tomorrow here, and it will be perfect for testing for Richmond.
"But we're going to have to let it all hang out."