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Tommy Phillips Earns Second Career Double Win Event at AAA Texas NHRA Nationals

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Tommy Phillips and his CBS ArcSafe/K&N team got the double win at the Texas Motorplex and they were awarded the Best Appearing Car honors for the weekend
Tommy Phillips and his CBS ArcSafe/K&N team got the double win at the Texas Motorplex and they were awarded the Best Appearing Car honors for the weekend
The fickle finger of racing fate, as it's been prone to do, once again pointed smack-dab at its native son, Tommy Phillips at the AAA Texas NHRA Nationals. Coming off his Super Comp win at the "Grand Daddy of them all," the US Nationals in Indianapolis, Phillips topped off his 2012 mantle collection with an extremely rare and highly coveted double victory at his hometown track, the Texas Motorplex.

"It's pretty incredible how quickly things can turn, particularly in this sport," admitted Phillips. "I'll be the first to tell you that the first half of my racing season was basically a disaster from a performance perspective. The cars were not very good and I was even worse! I don't feel like we're doing anything drastically different now, things have just clicked."

Keep in mind that we are talking about perspectives here, what Phillips considers an early season performance disaster, many others would see as a strong race season overall. The humble Forney, Texas, Texan already had a pair of national event runner-up finishes in the bag (Super Comp in Pomona, California and Super Gas in Chicago), he took part in the annual Jegs All-Stars competition, and he sits in the elite top-ten standing in the NHRA Lucas Oil points chase. But it was at the Texas Motorplex in Ennis, that Phillips marked yet another career-defining weekend by winning both Super Comp and Super Gas at his home event.

And, while clearly a double victory is an extraordinary achievement, Phillips is no stranger to this level of triumph in his stellar NHRA drag racing career, as this was his second double win weekend. Phillips also doubled up on the Wally's at the Jegs Cajun Sportsnationals two years ago in Belle Rose, Louisiana. So, to put the K&N racers accomplishment into perspective, Phillips is one of just twelve competitors who have ever won two categories at the same NHRA national event. Plus, he's now one of only six drivers who have achieved that feat on more than one occasion.

In the Super Comp final, driving his virtually iconic status CBS ArcSafe/K&N backed TNT dragster, Phillips posted a near-perfect .007 reaction time and 8.907 ET to stop Austin Williams and claim the event title. Overall in the seven rounds of Super Comp eliminations, Phillips posted two perfect 8.900 ET's and never left the starting line with a reaction time slower than .022.

This was the second time Phillips collected double W's, the first time was at the Jegs Cajun Sportsnationals
This was the second time Phillips collected double W's, the first time was at the Jegs Cajun Sportsnationals
"I felt good about Super Comp, but I got some breaks," confessed Phillips. "Lloyd Parfait nearly got me in round three; he fed me a bunch of finish line, but I was fortunate to run 8.900. That could have easily been 8.899. And of course I was very concerned for my run against Riley; his car has been great lately, I was actually driving it when I won in Indy, and he's doing a great job behind the wheel. In all honesty, I raced a lot of really good drivers, I was just lucky when I needed to be, and made good runs when I had to."

Phillips second win in Super Gas was as much a display of masterful racing as it was of incomparable sportsmanship. His round 4 matchup was with K&N's, Steve Williams, only Williams' car wouldn't start. Rather than run alone, Phillips waited while Williams' crew hustled to overcome the problem.

"(NHRA Starter) Mark Lyle told me that I could take a single, but I said I'd give him time to fix his car so we could race," Phillips explained. "In most circumstances, (NHRA officials) would have probably forced me to take a competition bye run, but we were the last pair of the last class on the track that night; so we weren't holding anyone up. I just told Mark that I would wait until they told me I had to stage or be disqualified. We've all been in that situation, and it's a terrible feeling when mechanical issues force you out of a race. I would rather get beat in a good race than take a win because of my opponent's misfortune."

In the Super Gas final Phillips bested fellow Texan Jimmy Lewis for the coveted double victory
In the Super Gas final Phillips bested fellow Texan Jimmy Lewis for the coveted double victory
Once Williams' K&N Corvette fired, Phillips came out on the good side of an exceedingly close double-breakout matchup, 9.877 to 9.875. The final round fittingly came down to a showdown between fellow Texans. Adding to the high drama was the fact that Phillips adversary, Jimmy Lewis, was also competing for a double victory. Lewis had already scored a win in the Top Sportsman final.

However, in final pass it was Phillips that got a slight jump at the starting line, .017 to .018, and held on for a 9.911 to 9.921 victory. "It's all still sinking in to be honest," said Phillips whose victories marked the 26th and 27th national event crowns of his career. "A double-up is what we all dream of, and to do it here at our home event makes it even more special.

Phillips and his CBS ArcSafe/K&N Engineering team were also awarded the Best Appearing Car honors for the event.

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