This is the Statt Mann Baby!! Time to Scatt a little bit.

In 2003 Tony Pedregon won the NHRA Funny Car championship breaking John Force’s string at ten as a driver. It was a masterful season for Tony with a career-best eight wins overall to temporarily unseat a legend.

His three wins this year means his next victory puts him AHEAD of Don Prudhomme and BEHIND only John Force on the all-time Funny Car win list.

It was painful for all concerned when Tony left John Force Racing in 2004 to start a team with his brother Cruz Pedregon.

Tony and I talked briefly about it. He simply said it was something he and Cruz had dreamed about since they were kids.

At the 2004 pre-season testing in Las Vegas Tony and his team worked in a quiet corner of the pits out of a plain white hauler opening new gear from new boxes.

But in four seasons, Tony Pedregon is back on top of his game leading the points with two events left in 2007.

In less than five years, Tony and Cruz built a championship contending team from boxes and a plain wrap crew.

When Tony left John the whispers said he was leaving the only reason for his championship.

Tony’s already written another story in my book.