Wilkerson shaking up Funny Car as class legend John Force hits benchmark

Tim Wilkerson campaigns as a single-car owner/driver in the NHRA's Funny Car class. His second win of the season at Gateway on Sunday shows he's ready to run with the "big dogs," writes Bill Stephens.

Updated: May 5, 2008, 2:22 AM ET
By Bill Stephens | Special to ESPN.com

Last year, Tim Wilkerson failed to win a race or advance to a final round during the entire 2007 NHRA POWERade season. He batted below .500 with a 14-16 win-loss round record and finished 15th in the Funny Car standings -- the second-worst points showing of his 12-year professional career.

After seven national events in 2008, Wilkerson now leads the Funny Car points, and following his second victory of the year on Sunday at the 12th O'Reilly Midwest Nationals at Gateway International ...

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