NHRA

NHRA: NAPA extends sponsorship of 2016 Funny Car champ Ron Capps

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Fans of NHRA Funny Car driver Ron Capps won’t have to look hard to recognize his car or firesuit in 2019 — they’ll look very similar to what he drove and wore in 2018.

Don Schumacher Racing announced Wednesday that NAPA Auto Parts has extended its contract to sponsor Capps’ Funny Car in a new multi-year agreement.

NAPA first appeared on the side of Capps’ car in 2007 as an associate sponsor, and became primary sponsor the following season. During the 11-year tenure between NAPA, DSR and Capps, the latter has won 36 races, 15 poles, and the 2016 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Funny Car championship.

“The longevity of our relationship speaks volumes, and we look forward to many more wins, championships and years representing NAPA Auto Parts,” team owner Don Schumacher said in a media release.

Added Capps, “It’s been an honor to represent the thousands of NAPA Auto Parts stores and NAPA AutoCare Center owners, employees and customers for the last decade, both on and off the race track. Our race fans are as passionate as they come and I’m elated about our future with NAPA Auto Parts and our continued goal to be number one.”

Capps, who has earned 60 wins in his Funny Car career – second-most in NHRA Funny Car annals behind John Force (16 championships, 149 wins) will be celebrating his 25th season as a professional NHRA competitor in 2019.

The upcoming season, which begins at the NHRA Winternationals in Pomona, California, February 8-10, will also mark Capps’ 15th season with DSR.

Capps is coming off a strong 2018 season, winning three races and claiming one No. 1 qualifier position in his NAPA Auto Parts Dodge Charger SRT HellCat en route to a fourth-place finish in the Funny Car ranks.

With NAPA now locked up for the next few years, DSR is still seeking a replacement sponsor for the U.S. Army, which did not extend its contract following the just completed 2018 NHRA season.

The Army was primary sponsor for nearly 20 years of eight-time Top Fuel champion Tony Schumacher, as well as associate sponsor on the Top Fuel dragsters of Antron Brown and Leah Pritchett.

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Cooper Webb, Shane McElrath win Anaheim II Supercross

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Cooper Webb entered the Anaheim II weekend winless in Supercross. He left as a winner and did so in dramatic fashion. Webb was almost perfect in the Triple Crown format. He won the first two Mains and swept the podium with a third-place finish in the final.

Marvin Musquin was the only other driver in 450s to sweep the podium. He did not win any of the Mains, but with a finish of third in the first and second-place results in the last two, he was grabbed the second spot in the overall results.

Eli Tomac won the final Main after finishing fourth in the first two features, which put him third in the overall results.

Trouble continues for last year’s champion. With nine minutes remaining in Main 3, Jason Anderson got into a shoving match with Chad Reed. Knocked out of his rhythm, he finished 17th in that Main and was ninth overall.

Justin Barcia went down hard after being thrown from his bike with five minutes remaining on the clock. He got cross-rutted before being ejected. Barcia was helped from the track by the medical staff.

The 250 class featured three winners in the three Mains. Leading the points by one entering Anaheim II, Colt Nichols was determined to hang onto the red plate. He won the first Main, then finished third and fourth in his next two outings.

Dylan Ferrandis was the runner-up to Nichols in Main 1, but charged back to win Main 2. He finished third in the final Main.

The overall winner of the night, Shane McElrath just got better in every Main. He finished third in the first feature, was second in Main 2 and won the final. That elevated him to second in the points – two behind Nichols.

Nichols holds onto the red plate for the third straight week.

450s

Main 1: Cooper Webb won over Ken Roczen and Marvin Musquin. … Roczen took the hole shot and steadily increased his advantage until Lap 6. Webb was in a battle of his own with Eli Tomac, but still closed the distance and overtook him on the final lap. The two riders went handlebar-to-handlebar on the final lap with Webb grabbing the lead on the run up to the finish line.

Main 2: Webb (cumulative: 2 points) won over Musquin (5) and the opening round winner Justin Barcia (10). Emboldened by his Main 1 win, Webb led checker-to-checker. Running third on Lap 8, Roczen (7) went down after his foot came off the peg. He fell back dramatically, but held onto third in the class points through two mains. Tomas finished fifth in the Main and was fourth in class points. 

Main 3: Tomac (cumulative: 9 points) won over Musquin (7) and Webb (5). Tomac led flag-to-flag, building an advantage of 6.825 seconds at the halfway point. He did not need to keep pushing that hard and allowed Musquin to shave two seconds off his lead, but still had a dominant margin of 4.787 seconds at the end.

250s

Main 1: Colt Nichols won over Dylan Ferrandis and Shane McElrath. … Adam Cianciarulo took a fall after leading three laps and dropped 10 seconds off the pace, but he held on to finish fourth. … Nichols grabbed a lead of more than three seconds and cruised to victory.

Main 2: Ferrandis (cumulative: 3 points) beat McElrath (5) and Nichols (4). … Nichols led the first seven laps of 12 until he made a mistake exiting to whoops and fell. Ferrandis leaped past to take a more than two second lead. Cianciarulo (18) went off track while running fifth with less than a minute on the clock. He dropped to 14th. RJ Hampshire (9) was fourth in class after the first two mains.

Main 3: McElrath (cumulative: 6 points) won over Cianciarulo (20) and Ferrandis (6). Nichols got the hole shot , but Cianciarulo led the first four laps. He could not hold off McElrath, however, who had the overall victory in his sights. By winning the final Main, McElrath took the overall victory. RJ Hampshire rode a steady three races with results of fifth, fourth, and fifth to take fourth overall.

Click here for overall results

Points Leaders

450s
Ken Roczen (63 points)
Eli Tomac (61)
Cooper Webb (57) (1 win)
Justin Barcia (56) (1)
Marvin Musquin (56)

250s
Colt Nichols (70 points) (1 win)
Shane McElrath (68) (1)
Dylan Ferrandis (63)
Adam Cianciarulo (62) (1)
RJ Hampshire (57)

Next race: January 19, Angel Stadium, Anaheim, Calif.

Season passes can be purchased at NBC Sports Gold.

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