LAS VEGAS --
Ron Capps, Kurt Johnson and Chip Ellis also were winners at the $1.8 million race, the 22nd of 23 events in the $50 million NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series.
The newly crowned Top Fuel world champion won more than $200,000 for the weekend, including today's final which paid more than $50,000 including contingency, the $100,000 Budweiser Shootout on Saturday and a $50,000 bonus from NHRA for sweeping both events.
In the process, Schumacher tied NHRA Top Fuel season records for consecutive victories (4) and consecutive final rounds (6). It was Schumacher's eighth victory of the season and the 29th of his career.
"Getting four wins in a row, winning the Bud Shootout, all the other stuff, it starts to blow you away," said Schumacher, who on Friday secured his third world championship title, worth $400,000. "A season is defined by little moments and we had our struggles early on. But starting at Denver we really turned a corner. It's all credit to Alan (Johnson, crew chief). He's so good and this team is just great. It was an unbelievable weekend for Schumacher Racing."
With the runner-up finish, Scelzi moved into the series points lead in what is setting up to be the closest Funny Car points finish in NHRA history. With the victory Capps cut Scelzi's lead to two points with one race remaining. John Force, the defending and 13-time world champion is in third, 28 points back. It was Capps' third victory of the season and the 17th of his career.
"Athletes always talk about peaking at the right time, and that's what we're doing," said Capps, who defeated Tim Wilkerson, Mike Ashley and Tony Bartone in the first three rounds. "I'm still in awe. This has been an enjoyable ride and I feel really good going into Pomona. We've got a really fast hot rod right now and I'm looking forward to the battle. I've got that gut-ache, like Force is always talking about, and that's just the way it is. It is going to be an exciting finish for the fans."
Capps has finished second in the points order two times in his career. Three-time Top Fuel world champion Scelzi is trying to join Kenny Bernstein as the only drivers in NHRA history to win world championship titles in both nitro categories.
"We needed to make a move at this race and we were able to do it, and just about pulled off the perfect weekend," Scelzi said. "Pomona is going to be a lot of fun to watch for the fans, but it's going to be a fight. You can't forget about Force, because he's really steamed right now and you can never count that team out. It's going to be such an exciting finish and all three of us want it really bad."
"We've been to the finals a few times here and it always seems to be Greg in the other lane," said Johnson, who earned early round wins over Bob Panella, Jeg Coughlin and Erica Enders. "We always race hard and it seems like (the race) is always decided by a few thousandths (of a second). It just seems like he's always on the good end of that. But this is Vegas and your luck is bound to change and today it did.
"It just feels really good to finally win this race for my sponsor, ACDelco."
Ellis was the automatic Pro Stock Motorcycle winner on his G-Squared/S&S Buell when Angelle Sampey fouled at the start on her U.S. Army Suzuki. In a rematch of the '04 final here, it was Ellis' second consecutive victory at this event and third of his career.
Defending series champ Andrew Hines lost in the first round and will bring a 47-point lead over his Screamin' Eagle Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson teammate GT Tonglet into the final race.
The NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series continues with the Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals, Nov. 3-6, at historic Pomona Raceway in Southern California.
Sunday's final results from the Fifth annual ACDelco Las Vegas NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The $1.8 million race is the 22nd of 23 in the $50 million NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series.
Top Fuel -- Tony Schumacher, 4.486 seconds, 327.19 mph def. David Grubnic, 4.587 seconds, 324.28 mph.
Funny Car -- Ron Capps, Dodge Stratus, 4.780, 325.69 def. Gary Scelzi, Stratus, 4.819, 324.51.
Pro Stock -- Kurt Johnson, Chevy Cobalt, 6.839, 202.27 def. Greg Anderson, Pontiac GTO, 6.821, 202.27.
Pro Stock Motorcycle -- Chip Ellis, Buell, 7.243, 187.63 def. Angelle Sampey, Suzuki, foul.
Competition Eliminator -- David Rampy, Roaster, 7.402, 178.21 def. Bo Butner III, Chevy Cavalier, 8.743, 154.26.
Stock Eliminator -- David Rampy, Chevy Camaro, 11.500, 112.18 def. Don Wann, Plymouth Satellite, 11.737, 112.07.
Super Comp -- Matt Constant, Dragster, 9.046, 163.91 def. Jason Kenny, Dragster, 9.042, 168.28.
Super Gas -- Robert Coleman, '27-T Ford, 10.251, 119.25 def. Jon Brazeau, Chevy Corvette, foul.