Brainerd: Lucas Oil Racing Saturday report

Lucas Oil pros looking sharp at Lucas Oil race in Minnesota BRAINERD, Minn. (Aug. 14) -- Pro Stock veteran Larry Morgan turned in his best qualifying performance of the year Saturday at his title sponsor's main event to lead the Lucas Oil race...

Lucas Oil pros looking sharp at Lucas Oil race in Minnesota

BRAINERD, Minn. (Aug. 14) -- Pro Stock veteran Larry Morgan turned in his best qualifying performance of the year Saturday at his title sponsor's main event to lead the Lucas Oil race team into eliminations at the 29th annual Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals.

Teammates Shawn Langdon and Hector Arana also put up some respectable numbers in qualifying, which was shortened to three rounds by some scattered rain on Friday.

Still figuring out his Boss horsepower, Morgan drove his red, white, and blue Lucas Oil Ford Mustang down Brainerd International Raceway in 6.673 seconds at 205.69 mph to earn the No. 7 spot overall.

"We're qualified in the top half of the field and we've got lane choice. Heck, I'm not going to know what to do with myself," Morgan said. "I know we're sure looking forward to going into eliminations when we're doing halfway decent. It's been a lot of work to get here.

"This is a big move for us. We're going in the right direction one little step at a time and we're starting to creep up on the good cars. Mama (Charlotte) Lucas is pitted right next door and she's already won an elimination round in her Super Comp dragster so I need to show her I can race too. You know, it's a perfect time for us to shine with her and Forrest here at their title race. We're thrilled."

Morgan will face off against longtime friend Vieri Gaines in the opening round. Gaines qualified 10th with a 6.682 at 205.35 mph.

Langdon posted a pair of terrific runs during Saturday's action, the best of which was a 3.881 at 305.70 mph in his Lucas Oil/Speedco dragster. He draws part-time racer Steve Chrisman in Round 1. Chrisman went 4.157 at 276.41 mph to qualify 12th overall.

"This has been an excellent weekend for us so far," Langdon said. "We went 3.88 and 3.92 today, the 3.92 in the heat of the day, and we got down both lanes in conditions that are probably really close to what we'll see tomorrow, we're really pleased right now.

"We think of ourselves as a top five team and we're No. 5 here so that's about right. We keep taking our baby steps to get this car where we think it should be. And with this being the Lucas race, it's the one above all the others where we want to do well."

Arana relied on his Round 1 pass of 7.005 seconds at 189.76 mph to earn the No. 8 position on the Pro Stock Motorcycle ladder. The defending race champion struggled Saturday, shutting his Lucas Oil Buell off early in his first attempt and breaking at the starting line in his second try when a wire came loose.

"These little mishaps, what can you do?" Arana said. "I'm actually glad they happened today instead of tomorrow. This all started when our computer crashed and we lost all our data. We had some backup stuff in our logbooks and we worked from that and started rebuilding on a new laptop. We've just had all these issues. Even the weather station was lost.

"We've learned some things in qualifying and now we just got to make sure that this bike doesn't fail. We need to stay focused and win a couple of rounds so we can keep the No. 1 spot heading into the Countdown because that's worth 20 bonus points."

Eliminations will open with Arana squaring off with Karen Stoffer, who improved to 7.035 at 189.55 mph in the third and final session.

-source: lucas oil racing

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Larry Morgan , Karen Stoffer , Vieri Gaines , Steve Chrisman , Shawn Langdon