NHRA Ron Capps Indianapolis
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Ron Capps breaks through for first NHRA victory at Lucas Oil Raceway

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NHRA Funny Car driver Ron Capps scored his 65th career victory Sunday — and his first at Lucas Oil Raceway near Indianapolis.

In beating J.R. Todd (who smoked his tires in the final round), Capps has won a national event at every active track on the NHRA schedule.

“I want to melt this (trophy) down and give it to all those NAPA people out there that are essential workers,” Capps said after winning for the first time in nearly a year. “We just want to come out and let people forget about what’s going on. Put on a show, have fun.

“This (trophy) is going to my wife (Shelley). I don’t think I’ve ever given my wife a trophy. We’ve been coming here 23 years, and I’ve never won at this track. For a driver to says he’s won at every track on the circuit, that tells you the talent that’s around him. That’s a huge accomplishment. I’m so proud to drive this race car.”

Don Schumacher Racing’s Funny Car teams have won eight consecutive NHRA events dating to last year.

In Top Fuel, two-time defending division champion Steve Torrence continued his comeback from missing the season opener by winning his second race this season and first since February.

Jeg Coughlin Jr. (Pro Stock) and Angelle Sampey (Pro Stock Motorcycle) also were class winners Sunday as the NHRA completed the second event since restarting its season last month. The series took a three-month hiatus for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The next national event will be Aug. 28-30 at Atlanta Dragway before returning to Lucas Oil Raceway over Labor Day weekend for the U.S. Nationals.

Zach Veach splits with Andretti Autosport for rest of IndyCar season

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Zach Veach will be leaving his Andretti Autosport ride with three races remaining in the season, choosing to explore options after the decision was made he wouldn’t return for 2021.

In a Wednesday release, Andretti Autosport said a replacement driver for the No. 26 Dallara-Honda would be named in the coming days. The NTT IndyCar Series will race Oct. 2-3 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course and then conclude the season Oct. 25 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida.

Veach was ranked 11th in the points standings through 11 races of his third season with Andretti. Since a fourth in the June 6 season opener at Texas Motor Speedway, he hadn’t finished higher than 14th.

“The decision was made that I will not be returning in 2021 with Andretti Autosport in the No. 26 Gainbridge car,” Veach said in the Andretti release. “This, along with knowing that limited testing exists for teams due to COVID, have led me to the decision to step out of the car for the remainder of the 2020 IndyCar season. I am doing this to allow the team to have time with other drivers as they prepare for 2021, and so that I can also explore my own 2021 options.

“This is the hardest decision I have ever made, but to me, racing is about family, and it is my belief that you take care of your family. Andretti Autosport is my family and I feel this is what is best to help us all reach the next step. I will forever be grateful to Michael and the team for all of their support over the years. I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for a relationship that started many years ago with Road to Indy. I will also be forever grateful to Dan Towriss for his friendship and for the opportunity he and Gainbridge have given me.

“My love for this sport and the people involved is unmeasurable, and I look forward to continuing to be amongst the racing world and fans in 2021.”

Said team owner Michael Andretti: “We first welcomed Zach to the Andretti team back in his USF2000 days and have enjoyed watching him grow and evolve as a racer, and a person. His decision to allow us to use the last few races to explore our 2021 options shows the measure of his character.

“Zach has always placed team and family first, and we’re very happy to have had him as part of ours for so many years. We wish him the best in whatever 2021 may bring and will always consider him a friend.”

Andretti fields five full-time cars for Veach, Alexander Rossi, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti and Colton Herta.

It also has fielded James Hinchcliffe in three races this season.