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Drag Racing Story of the Day!

Bernstein, Worsham, Allen, Savoie and Coughlin
Earn Event Wins at Automobile Club of Southern California
NHRA Finals

Bernstein, WJ, Savoie Clinch World Championships

By NHRA Communications

POMONA, Calif. - Kenny Bernstein earned his sixth NHRA Winston championship of his career Sunday during the 37th annual Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals at Pomona Raceway.

This is Bernstein's second Top Fuel title. He also has four Funny Car titles and is the only driver to win a Winston title in both nitro categories. He coupled the championship with the event win - his eighth victory of the season.

Warren Johnson and Angelle Savoie also wrapped up Winston titles. Johnson earned his sixth Winston Pro Stock championship while Savoie earned her second straight Winston Pro Stock Motorcycle title.

Del Worsham, Bruce Allen, Savoie and Mike Coughlin won in their respective categories at the $2 million race, the final of 24 events in the $50 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series.

Bernstein had a 5.500-second pass at 300.46 mph in his Budweiser King Dragster to beat Mike Dunn's 10.397 at 88.45 in his Yankee Dragster in Top Fuel competition.

"It was a tremendous year," Bernstein said. "Today was a tough day as it was for the last six or seven races. Either team could have made a mistake. We certainly want to thank Winston for everything. We are the last Winston Top Fuel champions. Obviously this is what we love to do and it has been a lot of fun.

"I'm glad (the season) is over. I am beat up pretty good. It has been very hard since September, but it has been a wonderful battle."

Dixon lost to Dunn in the semifinals, sealing the championship for Bernstein. The last time Bernstein won a Winston Top Fuel title was in 1996.

"This is at the top of my list of championships," Bernstein said. "When (crew chief) Dale Armstrong was with me in the 1980s, those championships were phenomenal. They all meant something. But this was just above those because of where we came from. This one is very special. (Current crew chief) Tim Richards made this turnaround. Look at what he has done in the last three years." 

Worsham turned in a 7.199 at 175.89 in his Checker Schuck's Kragen Pontiac Firebird to earn his fourth Funny Car win of the season. He won at the starting line when Whit Bazemore's red-light foul in his Matco Tools Pontiac Firebird ended the race early. 

"I saw (Bazemore) red light," Worsham said. "I staged immediately because he has the quickest car out here and I was trying to put the odds in my favor. I took every inch of the track that I could."

The win moved Worsham into third place in the Winston point standings. His previous season-best was fourth place in 1992. 

"I definitely wanted to get into third place," Worsham said. "We lost third place in Las Vegas when Ron Capps won the race, and we wanted to re-gain it here. We are definitely going to have a great off-season."

Allen earned his second victory of the season with a 6.869 pass at 200.62 in his Reher & Morrison Pontiac Grand Am, beating Brad Jeter's 6.936 at 199.94 in his Southern Rods and Parts Grand Am to win the Pro Stock category.

"We had an awesome car today," Allen said. "We started the season with a win here, then we had a little dry spell in the middle of the year. But we've got a good car and engine program."

Allen's win prevented another first-time winner from taking the spotlight in Winner's Circle. There have been 15 different drivers that have clocked event wins this season.

"We had to win to keep it from being 16 different drivers," Allen said. "(Jeter) is a good driver and he always gets good lights every time."

Johnson was ousted in the first round, losing to Darrell Alderman. Johnson had to wait for Jim Yates to lose in the second round before he clinched the Winston Pro Stock championship. Johnson claimed six victories this season.

"If you are going to win ugly, you might as well win as ugly as you can," Johnson said. "It's been one of those seasons where we've been real good or real bad - there hasn't been anything in between. That's how this year has gone for everyone in Pro Stock. We just feel fortunate to have won six races and the championship."

Savoie sped to a 7.173 at 184.12 on a Suzuki GSXR in the Pro Stock Motorcycle category for her seventh win of the season and 22nd overall, beating Shawn Gann, who fouled at the starting line on a Suzuki. 

"I had a feeling that Shawn was going to go red," Savoie said. "He is very quick and it is hard to fix being too quick."

Savoie, already the winningest female in NHRA history, won her second straight Winston Pro Stock championship when second-place Antron Brown was ousted in the first round by Joe DeSantis. This was the last race for Winston as the NHRA series sponsor as well as the team sponsor for Savoie.

"I feel like I won twice today," Savoie said. "When we had the title, it was like a 1,000 pounds of weight was lifted from my shoulders. We didn't have to worry about the race anymore because it wasn't a points battle. It felt like I was qualifying for the No. 1 spot again.

"This is very special for me because I am the first female Winston Pro Stock Motorcycle champion and I am also the last Winston Pro Stock Motorcycle champion. That means a lot to me because it feels like I am losing my family."

Coughlin clocked a 7.427 at 181.72 in a Chevy S-10 for his third Pro Stock Truck victory of the season. Coughlin beat Greg Stanfield's 7.491 at 181.62 in an S-10. The win put Coughlin in fourth place of the Winston standings.

This was the last time the Pro Stock Truck category was classified as a professional category.

"We couldn't be more happy," Coughlin said. "We wanted nothing more than to win the last Pro Stock Truck race. Our goal was to finish the year strong. We've had a good second half.

"We respect the NHRA's decision not to run the Pro Stock Truck category, and we have a lot of high hopes on what we will be doing next year. We definitely wanted to win the last race."

POMONA, Calif. -- Final finish order (1-16) for professional categories at the 37th annual Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals at Pomona Raceway. The $2 million race is the final of 24 events in the $50 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series.

TOP FUEL:

1. Kenny Bernstein; 2. Mike Dunn; 3. Larry Dixon; 4. Clay Millican; 5. Doug Herbert; 6. Tim Gibson; 7. Darrell Russell; 8. Gary Scelzi; 9. Tony Schumacher; 10. Robert Reehl; 11. Andrew Cowin; 12. Rhonda Hartman-Smith; 13. Doug Kalitta; 14. Scott Weis; 15. Don Lampus; 16. Brady Kalivoda. 

FUNNY CAR:

1. Del Worsham, Pontiac Firebird; 2. Whit Bazemore, Firebird; 3. Dean Skuza, Dodge Avenger; 4. Gary Densham, Ford Mustang; 5. Tony Pedregon, Mustang; 6. Johnny Gray, Firebird; 7. John Force, Mustang; 8. Tommy Johnson Jr., Chevy Camaro; 9. Tim Wilkerson, Firebird; 10. Frank Pedregon, Firebird; 11. Bruce Sarver, Firebird; 12. Scotty Cannon, Firebird; 13. Bob Gilbertson, Firebird; 14. Al Hofmann, Firebird; 15. Ron Capps, Camaro; 16. Jerry Toliver, Firebird. 

PRO STOCK:

1. Bruce Allen, Pontiac Grand Am; 2. Brad Jeter, Grand Am; 3. Jeg Coughlin, Chevy Cavalier; 4. George Marnell, Grand Am; 5. Jim Yates, Grand Am; 6. Mike Edwards, Cavalier; 7. Troy Coughlin, Cavalier; 8. Darrell Alderman, Dodge Neon R/T; 9. Tom Hammonds, Cavalier; 10. Mark Pawuk, Grand Am; 11. Tom Martino, Grand Am; 12. Larry Morgan, Neon R/T; 13. Warren Johnson, Grand Am; 14. Rickie Smith, Grand Am; 15. V. Gaines, Cavalier; 16. Ron Krisher, Cavalier. 

PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE:

1. Angelle Savoie, Suzuki; 2. Shawn Gann, Suzuki; 3. GT Tonglet, Suzuki; 4. Matt Hines, Suzuki; 5. Craig Treble, Suzuki; 6. Steve Johnson, Suzuki; 7. Geno Scali, Kawasaki; 8. Joe DeSantis, Suzuki; 9. Reggie Showers, Suzuki; 10. Antron Brown, Suzuki; 11. Fred Camarena, Suzuki; 12. Mike Berry, Suzuki; 13. Jay Matthews, Suzuki; 14. Ron Ayers, Suzuki; 15. Chris Reuter, Suzuki; 16. Sam Hurwitz, Suzuki. 

PRO STOCK TRUCK:

1. Mike Coughlin, Chevy S-10; 2. Greg Stanfield, S-10; 3. Todd Patterson, Dodge Dakota; 4. Victor Cagnazzi, S-10; 5. Randy Daniels, S-10; 6. John Lingenfelter, GMC Sonoma; 7. Don Smith, S-10; 8. Bob Panella Jr, S-10; 9. Taylor Lastor, S-10; 10. Scott Tidwell, S-10; 11. Craig Eaton, Dakota; 12. Jeff Gracia, Sonoma; 13. Jeff Naiser, S-10; 14. Bart Price, S-10; 15. Lou Ficco, S-10; 16. Scott Perin, S-10. 

POMONA, Calif. -- Sunday's final results from the 37th annual Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals at Pomona Raceway. The $2 million race is the final of 24 events in the $50 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series:

Top Fuel -- Kenny Bernstein, 5.500 seconds, 300.46 mph def. Mike Dunn, 10.397 seconds, 88.45 mph. 

Funny Car -- Del Worsham, Pontiac Firebird, 7.199, 175.89 def. Whit Bazemore, Firebird, foul. 

Pro Stock -- Bruce Allen, Pontiac Grand Am, 6.869, 200.62 def. Brad Jeter, Grand Am, 6.936, 199.94. 

Pro Stock Bike -- Angelle Savoie, Suzuki, 7.173, 184.12 def. Shawn Gann, Suzuki, foul. 

Pro Stock Truck -- Mike Coughlin, Chevy S-10, 7.427, 181.72 def. Greg Stanfield, S-10, 7.491, 181.62. 

Federal-Mogul Dragster -- Rick Santos, 5.366, 263.26 def. Duane Shields, 5.489, 259.81. 

Federal-Mogul Funny Car -- Von Smith, Pontiac Firebird, 5.706, 254.90 def. Steve Harker, Dodge Avenger, 10.712, 78.65. 

Comp Eliminator -- Don Stratton Jr, Roadster, 8.049, 163.10 def. Bo Butner, Pontiac Firebird, 7.821, 162.24. 

Super Stock -- Jeff Taylor, Pontiac Grand Am, 8.513, 146.96 def. Ross Wilson, Oldsmobile Achieva, foul. 

Stock -- Mary Method, Chevy Nova, 10.622, 118.92 def. Tom Watts, Plymouth Barracuda, 11.155, 121.62. 

Super Comp -- Rick Beckstrom, 8.892, 171.40 def. Greg Carrillo, 8.858, 169.15. 

Super Gas -- Dave Slatten, Chevy Corvette, 9.933, 151.20 def. Justin Allen, Pontiac Firebird, 9.914, 151.37. 

Summit Super Pro ET -- Mike Wiblishouser, Dragster, 9.567, 156.01 def. Jason Rogers, Dragster, 8.049, 156.66. 

Summit Pro ET -- Mike LaRosa, Roadrunner, 10.608, 126.23 def. Jeromy Hefler, Trans Am, 11.250, 110.93. 

Summit Sportsman ET -- Greg Dreher, Mustang, 14.593, 84.73 def. Dennis Parisan, Chevelle, 13.378, 95.71. 

Summit Motorcycle ET -- Tim Pazour, Suzuki, 8.987, 142.37 def. Ed Ehrke, Kawasaki, foul. 

POMONA, Calif. -- Final round-by-round results from the 37th annual Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals at Pomona Raceway, the final of 24 events in the $50 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series:

TOP FUEL: 

ROUND ONE -- Darrell Russell, 4.596, 311.20 def. Andrew Cowin, 4.913, 235.02; Gary Scelzi, 4.531, 322.88 def. Tony Schumacher, 4.517, 329.34; Tim Gibson, 4.787, 291.45 def. Doug Kalitta, 7.715, 106.18; Clay Millican, 4.606, 321.88 def. Scott Weis, foul; Mike Dunn, 4.514, 330.15 def. Brady Kalivoda, broke; Doug Herbert, 4.649, 308.57 def. Don Lampus, 11.327, 76.90; Larry Dixon, 4.509, 321.58 def. Rhonda Hartman-Smith, 7.595, 106.09; Kenny Bernstein, 4.564, 324.83 def. Robert Reehl, 4.714, 304.25; 
QUARTERFINALS -- Millican, 4.633, 311.20 def. Herbert, 4.668, 309.84; Bernstein, 4.560, 322.42 def. Russell, 4.786, 258.81; Dunn, 4.512, 325.22 def. Gibson, 4.729, 314.53; Dixon, 4.507, 322.11 def. Scelzi, 7.744, 102.18; 
SEMIFINALS -- Bernstein, 4.548, 321.35 def. Millican, 4.996, 204.82; Dunn, 4.518, 330.31 def. Dixon, 4.526, 321.65; 
FINAL -- Bernstein, 5.500, 300.46 def. Dunn, 10.397, 88.45. 

FUNNY CAR: 

ROUND ONE -- Dean Skuza, Dodge Avenger, 4.851, 313.07 def. Frank Pedregon, Pontiac Firebird, 4.876, 320.20; Gary Densham, Ford Mustang, 4.773, 324.98 def. Scotty Cannon, Firebird, 5.573, 179.97; John Force, Mustang, 4.750, 317.87 def. Jerry Toliver, Firebird, 13.922, 68.04; Tony Pedregon, Mustang, 4.801, 316.67 def. Al Hofmann, Firebird, 10.457, 91.07; Whit Bazemore, Firebird, 4.759, 323.43 def. Bob Gilbertson, Firebird, 8.254, 110.06; Tommy Johnson Jr., Chevy Camaro, 4.819, 318.32 def. Tim Wilkerson, Firebird, 4.859, 316.01; Johnny Gray, Firebird, 4.882, 314.02 def. Bruce Sarver, Firebird, 5.261, 208.65; Del Worsham, Firebird, 5.604, 244.43 def. Ron Capps, Camaro, 11.380, 87.94; 
QUARTERFINALS -- Densham, 4.797, 320.28 def. Johnson Jr., 8.715, 91.21; Bazemore, 4.743, 321.96 def. Gray, 5.758, 205.13; Skuza, 4.904, 304.67 def. Force, 7.569, 96.85; Worsham, 4.823, 322.58 def. T. Pedregon, 4.868, 285.35; 
SEMIFINALS -- Worsham, 4.827, 321.27 def. Skuza, 4.840, 317.19; Bazemore, 4.736, 322.81 def. Densham, foul; 
FINAL -- Worsham, 7.199, 175.89 def. Bazemore, foul. 

PRO STOCK: 

ROUND ONE -- Brad Jeter, Pontiac Grand Am, 6.890, 199.94 def. Tom Hammonds, Chevy Cavalier, 6.887, 200.53; Troy Coughlin, Cavalier, 6.876, 200.86 def. V. Gaines, Cavalier, foul; Jeg Coughlin, Cavalier, 6.878, 200.44 def. Ron Krisher, Cavalier, 8.508, 116.56; Darrell Alderman, Dodge Neon R/T, 6.885, 201.04 def. Warren Johnson, Grand Am, 6.898, 200.92; George Marnell, Grand Am, 6.859, 200.23 def. Tom Martino, Grand Am, 6.892, 200.74; Mike Edwards, Cavalier, 6.865, 200.74 def. Rickie Smith, Grand Am, 6.899, 200.62; Bruce Allen, Grand Am, 6.853, 200.89 def. Larry Morgan, Neon R/T, 6.893, 200.68; Jim Yates, Grand Am, 6.838, 201.01 def. Mark Pawuk, Grand Am, 6.890, 200.23; 
QUARTERFINALS -- J. Coughlin, 6.895, 200.08 def. Edwards, 6.884, 200.23; Marnell, 6.876, 200.29 def. Alderman, 6.916, 200.50; Allen, 6.876, 200.02 def. T. Coughlin, 6.914, 200.02; Jeter, 6.890, 199.97 def. Yates, 6.862, 200.59; 
SEMIFINALS -- Allen, 6.853, 200.44 def. J. Coughlin, 6.881, 200.44; Jeter, 6.902, 200.35 def. Marnell, 6.891, 200.23; 
FINAL -- Allen, 6.869, 200.62 def. Jeter, 6.936, 199.94. 

PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE: 

ROUND ONE -- Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 7.331, 182.45 def. Mike Berry, Suzuki, 7.360, 177.91; Geno Scali, Kawasaki, 7.279, 184.19 def. Reggie Showers, Suzuki, 7.264, 183.59; GT Tonglet, Suzuki, 7.334, 182.35 def. Chris Reuter, Suzuki, 7.391, 182.82; Angelle Savoie, Suzuki, 7.165, 185.74 def. Jay Matthews, Suzuki, 7.364, 180.36; Joe DeSantis, Suzuki, 7.273, 182.13 def. Antron Brown, Suzuki, 7.276, 185.31; Craig Treble, Suzuki, 7.259, 184.22 def. Ron Ayers, Suzuki, 7.371, 181.69; Matt Hines, Suzuki, 7.271, 187.57 def. Fred Camarena, Suzuki, 7.356, 181.96; Shawn Gann, Suzuki, 7.263, 183.32 def. Sam Hurwitz, Suzuki, foul; 
QUARTERFINALS -- Tonglet, 7.296, 182.35 def. DeSantis, 7.513, 154.95; Gann, 7.305, 183.32 def. Scali, 7.371, 181.59; Hines, 7.287, 188.57 def. Treble, 7.320, 181.52; Savoie, 7.186, 184.19 def. Johnson, 7.332, 180.67; 
SEMIFINALS -- Gann, 7.284, 183.94 def. Hines, foul; Savoie, 7.158, 185.41 def. Tonglet, 7.253, 183.89; 
FINAL -- Savoie, 7.173, 184.12 def. Gann, foul. 

PRO STOCK TRUCK: 

ROUND ONE -- Mike Coughlin, Chevy S-10, 7.433, 180.98 def. Craig Eaton, Dodge Dakota, 7.499, 181.03; Greg Stanfield, S-10, 7.460, 181.13 def. Scott Tidwell, S-10, 7.497, 180.69; Victor Cagnazzi, S-10, 7.480, 181.06 def. Taylor Lastor, S-10, 7.471, 180.55; Don Smith, S-10, 18.117, 45.24 def. Bart Price, S-10, foul; Todd Patterson, Dakota, 7.502, 180.26 def. Lou Ficco, S-10, 7.534, 179.52; Randy Daniels, S-10, 7.458, 181.08 def. Scott Perin, S-10, 14.259, 57.92; Bob Panella Jr, S-10, 7.535, 179.21 def. Jeff Naiser, S-10, 7.508, 179.66; John Lingenfelter, GMC Sonoma, 7.393, 182.50 def. Jeff Gracia, Sonoma, 7.503, 180.43; 
QUARTERFINALS -- Patterson, 7.465, 180.91 def. Smith, 7.509, 180.21; Stanfield, 7.475, 181.15 def. Panella Jr, 7.519, 180.16; Cagnazzi, 7.483, 181.50 def. Daniels, 7.458, 181.30; Coughlin, 7.437, 181.62 def. Lingenfelter, 7.480, 173.01; 
SEMIFINALS -- Stanfield, 7.454, 181.45 def. Cagnazzi, 7.491, 181.59; Coughlin, 7.425, 181.35 def. Patterson, 7.485, 180.77; 
FINAL -- Coughlin, 7.427, 181.72 def. Stanfield, 7.491, 181.62. 

POMONA, Calif. -- Point standings (top 10) for NHRA professional categories following the 37th annual Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals at Pomona Raceway, the final of 24 events in the $50 million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series:

TOP FUEL:

1. Kenny Bernstein, 2,102; 2. Larry Dixon, 2,007; 3. Doug Kalitta, 1,598; 4. Mike Dunn, 1,594; 5. Gary Scelzi, 1,581; 6. Darrell Russell, 1,505; 7. Doug Herbert, 1,206; 8. Tony Schumacher, 1,153; 9. David Grubnic, 843; 10. Rhonda Hartman-Smith, 822.

FUNNY CAR:

1. John Force, 2,000; 2. Whit Bazemore, 1,748; 3. Del Worsham, 1,490; 4. Ron Capps, 1,451; 5. Tony Pedregon, 1,406; 6. Bruce Sarver, 1,283; 7. Frank Pedregon, 1,149; 8. Gary Densham, 1,147; 9. Dean Skuza, 1,128; 10. Tommy Johnson Jr., 1,127.

PRO STOCK:

1. Warren Johnson, 1,538; 2. Jim Yates, 1,459; 3. Bruce Allen, 1,383; 4. Mike Edwards, 1,321; 5. Jeg Coughlin, 1,256; 6. Mark Pawuk, 1,221; 7. Mark Osborne, 1,212; 8. Ron Krisher, 1,182; 9. Kurt Johnson, 1,170; 10. Brad Jeter, 1,062.

PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE:

1. Angelle Savoie, 1,332; 2. Antron Brown, 1,175; 3. Matt Hines, 1,003; 4. Craig Treble, 949; 5. Shawn Gann, 850; 6. GT Tonglet, 841; 7. Reggie Showers, 699; 8. Geno Scali, 694; 9. Steve Johnson, 650; 10. Mike Berry, 493.

PRO STOCK TRUCK:

1. Bob Panella Jr, 1,156; 2. Greg Stanfield, 1,058; 3. Randy Daniels, 1,006; 4. Mike Coughlin, 821; 5. Jeff Gracia, 795; 6. Todd Patterson, 769; 7. Don Smith, 701; 8. Taylor Lastor, 697; 9. Scott Perin, 614; 10. Victor Cagnazzi, 611.

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