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Mopar HEMI®-powered Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) driver Jack Beckman raced the Valvoline/Mail Terminal Services Dodge Charger Funny Car straight into his second final round of the season, the 19th of his career and the first at the NHRA Midwest Nationals at Gateway International Raceway. He ended up runner-up to Robert Hight and moved into third in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series point standings.

Beckman and his team remained consistent throughout. On his direct path to the finals he left some heavies in the dust, including Tony Pedregon, whom he defeated with a 4.254-second pass at 290.63, Tim Wilkerson with a 4.243/294.56, and Bob Tasca using a 4.215/297.29.

It wasn't until the final round, when he met up with Robert Hight, after a track-cooling short rain delay, that he met his match. Beckman launched two hundredths of a second ahead of Hight, but it was Hight first at the finish, recording the quickest pass of the day, a 4.149/304.25, to snatch the victory from Beckman by 15 feet. Although Beckman posted his quickest pass of the day, a 4.204/296.44, it wasn't enough to beat Hight.

Beckman’s DSR teammate Ron Capps advanced to the semis in his own Mopar-driven Dodge Charger, trailering Jeff Arend and Del Worsham before he also fell to Hight. The third member of the DSR triumvirate, Matt Hagan, exited in the opening round.

The DSR teammates now own the Nos. 2–4 spots in the NHRA Funny Car standings. Hagan is second behind leader John Force, Beckman is third following his runner-up finish, and Capps rounds out the Mopar-powered trio in the fourth spot. Next up is the 30th annual NHRA Southern Nationals in Commerce, Ga., May 14-16.
 

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