Stanton: Bruce Litton post-race report

Litton frustrated again in race for brass ring STANTON, Mich.-Bruce Litton keeps knocking on victory's door, but something keeps him from crossing the threshold. Another example of just how frustrating the year has been was demonstrated at this...

Litton frustrated again in race for brass ring

STANTON, Mich.-Bruce Litton keeps knocking on victory's door, but something keeps him from crossing the threshold. Another example of just how frustrating the year has been was demonstrated at this past weekend's IHRA's 20th annual CARQUEST Northern Nationals.

Litton has qualified well this season, set world (Canada) and track (Leicester) Top Fuel records, won eliminations rounds, but the door to the winner's circle keeps getting shut in his face.

The driver of the Wix Filters-Renegade-United Express-Stoops Freightliner-sponsored dragster has come close to the brass ring at Rockingham (finals), Dinwiddie (semifinal) and Canada (runner-up) only to go away frustrated.

The 44-year-old enclosed trailer dealer from Indianapolis experienced more of the same yesterday when he faced off with points championship rival Clay Millican in the semifinals. Suddenly, his dreams of victory went puff.

The puff was the raw fuel from pipes of the Littonmobile at half track and ended what had been a close race. Litton even had managed to whittle away at what had been Millican's edged at the starting line, .472 seconds to .482. When the smoke cleared, Millican beat Litton to the finish line with an elapsed time of 4.846 seconds at 300.73 mph to 5.235/209.39.

Litton appeared to be in the driver's seat after the elimination opener against Steve Smith. He also got a little unneeded help when the blower belt came off Smith's car. The reason was that Litton caught Smith napping at the starting line with his reaction time of .493 to .512. Smith tried to make a race of it but was no match for Litton, who won on the Mid-Michigan Motorplex quarter-mile in 4.899/296.89 to 5.181/243/85.

Litton has developed a reputation over the course of the season for turning the Wix during qualifying. He gave a small demonstration of that when he completed Friday's heat with the third quickest pass of 4.954 seconds at 270.81 mph despite smoking the tires.

On Saturday, Litton saved his best for last when he laid down a run of 4.846/297.16 to put him solidly into the fourth position for the head-to-head eliminations the next day.

Litton will have a month to think what he needs to do to knock on victory's door, cross the threshold and grab the brass ring before the IHRA tour moves to Norwalk, Ohio, for the 24th annual Mopar Parts World Nationals from Aug. 23-26.

Litton's progress in the drive for his first victory of the season can be followed on his website of www.brucelitton.com. The latest news on Litton and the other stars of the IHRA tour can be found by going to www.competitionplus.com.

-BLR-

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Series Drag
Drivers Clay Millican , Bruce Litton , Steve Smith