By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher
Don Schumacher Racing Top Fuel Dragster pilot Tony Schumacher had been sidelined for nearly two years. He had trouble finding sponsorship despite being an eight-time NHRA Top Fuel Champion.
But this weekend, the driver formerly known as “The Sarge” returned following a year and nearly eight months away at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis. Before the second qualifying session, The Hills, Texas native had a very important question to ask.
He asked his girlfriend Summer Penland if she would marry him. He proposed to her in the staging lanes.
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“I want to thank the people, who have given me this opportunity,” Schumacher said. “I want to thank Global Electronic Technology… Toyota, but this beautiful woman has supported me. We didn’t know when we would get back in. Over the year that I’ve had off, this beautiful woman has been supporting me and we didn’t know when I would get back in. I started to think that I didn’t want to miss anymore opportunities and this gorgeous woman has always been by my side. I want to ask a question. (Schumacher’s question was inaudible).”
Summer said yes. Schumacher’s second qualifying pass — who was part of the final pairing — was whipped out due to rain.
Clay Millican and Schumacher did a burnout, but they were shut down by NHRA officials before going down the track. He will be qualified No. 7 for Sunday’s race.
But before tomorrow’s eliminations, Schumacher will have time to celebrate with his now fiancée.
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“Nowadays you aren’t just picking someone to spend the rest of your life with, you are picking someone you can enjoy being quarantined with,” Schumacher said in a March 21st post on his Instagram account. “Choose wisely. When you are a kid spending all day, every day with your best friend is a blast. Turns out it’s the same when your an adult #lockdown #quarantine #lifeisgood”
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