With just two races left in the tightest 2005 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series Funny Car championship chase in NHRA history, Ron Capps is glad to have a busy week of Las Vegas appearances to take his mind off the battle for his first Funny Car crown.

Just 57 points (or three rounds) behind points leader John Force and 21 markers back of his teammate Gary Scelzi in second, Brut Dodge Stratus Funny Car driver Capps will spend the days preceding this weekend's ACDelco Las Vegas NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway playing golf, attending a crew member's wedding after organizing a bachelor party, signing autographs at the Treasure Island Hotel, and appearing at a Brut sponsor function. And when qualifying is over on Friday and Saturday, he'll scoot over to the LVMS oval for World of Outlaws action.

"Vegas is going to be a busy week for me prior to the race," he said. "It's one of those races where you always seem to have a lot of things going on.

"One of my crew members is getting married so I'm throwing him a bachelor party on Wednesday night. His wedding is on Thursday night, so I'll be doing the Treasure Island autograph session in my tuxedo and then running across the street to the wedding.

"On top of that, on Tuesday Oakley is having a celebrity golf tournament where Gary Scelzi, Scelzi's crew chief Mike Neff and I will play with some other celebrities from TV and sports.

"There's also a World of Outlaws race on Friday and Saturday night, which I will definitely be going to both nights to watch our good friend Danny Lasoski race.

"I'm kind of glad it's that busy. At this point everything is so weighted on what's going to happen in the championship that it's probably better not to have too much free time and too much time to think.

"To say that we're not nervous would be lying, but it's more a nervous excitement. When you have a guy like Scelzi, who's a three-time world champion, who gets his nerves up a little bit and red-lights (in Dallas two weeks ago), it just tells you how tough it is, because he's probably as cool as they come."

Getting sick to his stomach on race day has been par for the course the last few races. "I had a long talk with Force and I found out I'm not the only guy (who does that) and it's good," he said. "You have to go up there with that feeling. It's what you really live for. I'm getting to like it. I'm getting to like that feeling like I'm going to throw up before I stage the car. I'm getting to feel like I can up myself another level and you always look for that next level to take yourself to, whether it's mentally or physically, to make yourself better.

"At this point we're at the highest level in the sport. So to find another level is tough to do, and guys like (13-time Funny Car champion) Force and (three-time Top Fuel titlist) Scelzi know how to do it. I still feel like I'm learning.

"So far, I've been able to go up there and do my job, as nervous as I've been. So, as long as I can keep doing that and (crew chief) Ed 'Ace'

McCulloch and the Brut guys keep doing what they're doing, we're good.

"Like Ace said, we're enjoying the moment and we're going to take it right to Sunday night at Pomona."

Capps is the 2001 (2) winner here in Las Vegas.