NHRA comes to Bay

Infineon Raceway, one of the quickest tracks on the NHRA circuit, will host the 20th annual Fram Autolite NHRA Nationals from Friday through Sunday and, if things hold true to form, more records will fall.

Last year’s event marked one of the quickest in Infineon Raceway history, as six of eight track records were broken. Top Fuel driver Tony Schumacher eclipsed the previous track mark with a 4.486-second pass, while David Grubnic set the Top Fuel speed record at 331.36 mph. This marked the fourth consecutive year that more than six track records were broken.

An NHRA national record was also set last year in the Sonoma Valley when Pro Stock driver Greg Anderson covered the quarter-mile in just 6.631 seconds. Anderson went on to break his own national record later in the year, but he still holds the Infineon Raceway elapsed time and speed records (207.82).

“Anytime you can run a national record, you certainly have something to be proud of,” said Anderson, a two-time champion at Infineon Raceway (2004-05). “The track is fantastic. The Pro Stock drivers love it.”

From pre-event parties to a 20th anniversary exhibit, there is sure to be something for everyone, including several tributes to the late Eric Medlen.

Wall of Fame Ceremony: Fresno native Gary Scelzi will be inducted into the Infineon Raceway Wall of Fame on Sunday during pre-event ceremonies, making him the third NHRA driver to be enshrined. He joins Pro Stock driver Warren Johnson (2005) and Funny Car driver John Force (2006) in the Wall of Fame, which was created in 2005.

Champ Cars on San Jose Streets: It’s a shame the Champ Car World Series and San Jose Grand Prix officials have never paid attention to what’s going on in the Sonoma Valley this weekend. The third annual San Jose Grand Prix will run in direct conflict with the NHRA at Infineon Friday through Sunday.

Defending race champion and three-time defending series champion Sebastien Bourdais of France is back in the Champ Car points lead after his win in Edmonton last weekend. Both his nearest competitors had problems in the Canadian race and Bourdais came from third place (two points behind first) to a 20-point lead.

Robert Doornbos of Holland and Minardi Team USA and Aussie Will Power of Team Australia/Walker Racing are Bourdais’ closest competitors. American rookie Graham Rahal, son of open-wheel legend Bobby Rahal, has been a top-10 competitor all year and finished third in Edmonton.

Ticket information is available by calling (408) 277-6290 or logging on to www.sjgp.com.

GINN: IT’s ABOUT SUCCESS

» Bobby Ginn learned quickly that winning takes a lot of money, and without solid sponsorships, it’s almost impossible. Faced with scaling back his program, Ginn instead merged his organization with Dale Earnhardt Inc. to form a four-car team that will debut this weekend. “I would not have been proud of putting a car out there that couldn’t compete,” Ginn said.

THIS WEEK’S PIT STOPS

NEXTEL CUP

WHAT: Allstate 400 at the Brickyard

WHERE: Indianapolis

WHEN: Sun., 10 a.m.

BUSCH

WHAT: Kroger 200

WHERE:Indianapolis

WHEN: Saturday, 4:30 p.m.

NHRA

WHAT: Fram Autolite Nat’ls

WHERE: Sonoma

WHEN: Sun., 11 a.m.

IRL

WHAT: Firestone Indy 400

WHERE: Brooklyn, Mich.

WHEN: Aug. 5

CHAMP CAR

WHAT: San Jose Grand Prix

WHERE: San Jose

WHEN: Sun., 3 p.m.

FORMULA ONE

WHAT: Hungarian GP

WHERE: Budapest, Hungary

WHEN: Aug. 5

Other Sportssports

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Navigation shelter resident tests positive for coronavirus

Homeless advocates repeatedly warned about an outbreak in congregate settings

CCSF taps first Asian American woman to lead as interim chancellor

City College reached a settlement with former Chancellor Mark Rocha after an abrupt departure

Plummeting Bay Area bridge traffic finally levels off

All told, weekday Bay Area traffic volumes are down by half, which has remained consistent from March 23 through this week.

Burger Boogaloo moved to Halloween weekend

Annual music festival hosted by John Waters to feature Bikini Kill, Circle Jerks

Newsom says face coverings can help, but California won’t mandate for now

Gov. Gavin Newsom said Thursday that face coverings are beneficial in grocery… Continue reading

Most Read