Dallas: Lucas Oil Racing Saturday report

Lucas Oil racers optimistic about a long day in TexasJ DALLAS (Sept. 25) -- Larry Morgan knew he was getting close to cracking the right combination on his Lucas Oil Pro Stock Ford Mustang, and Saturday it all came together. Morgan's car...

Lucas Oil racers optimistic about a long day in TexasJ

DALLAS (Sept. 25) -- Larry Morgan knew he was getting close to cracking the right combination on his Lucas Oil Pro Stock Ford Mustang, and Saturday it all came together.

Morgan's car showed it could run in both the heat and the cool weather as he qualified No. 4 in the Pro Stock field for Sunday's eliminations at the O'Reilly Super Start Batteries NHRA Nationals. It was a marked improvement for the veteran driver, who made the big switch to Ford livery this year.

"I am so proud of my team right now," Morgan said. "They worked so hard to get us to where we're at. We're just so excited to get this Lucas Oil Ford up to the top half of this field."

Lucas Oil's other pro drivers are also racing on Sunday as Shawn Langdon put the Lucas Oil/Speedco Top Fuel dragster into the No. 9 spot in the field and Hector Arana is starting the Lucas Oil Buell out of the eighth spot in Pro Stock Motorcycle.

Conditions from Friday to Saturday were about as Jekyll and Hyde as they could be. Friday saw the track temperature rise as high as 141 degrees, while Saturday was cooler, overcast, and rainy. Morgan's car was quick at Texas Motorplex no matter what the weather as like.

Morgan ran a best lap of 6.638 seconds at 207.34mph, which is his best qualifying position of the season.

"I'm just elated," Morgan said. "We're third quickest in the third session and second quickest in the last. We'd been inching up on it, but it took us a while to figure out what the car wanted. We kept hitting on it and found the right combination. I'm just so excited for Lucas Oil, Summit Racing, Ford, and everyone else whose helped us and stuck by us.

"If we can make four runs Sunday like we made this weekend, we'll be in the final, and I'm looking forward to that."

Morgan faces Vieri Gaines in the first round on Sunday. Gaines ran a top lap of 6.662 at 207.34 mph.

Langdon had a best pass of 3.902 seconds at 306.95 mph to qualify in the No. 9 spot in Top Fuel. He faces No. 8 qualifier Bob Vandergriff, who ran also a 3.902 but got the higher spot with a better top speed of 308.43 mph.

"It's a tough weekend when you go from real hot and humid to a cold and tight track," Langdon said. "We did the best we could for what knowledge we had of everything.

"We'll be first pair out in the morning. We've had good runs out of that spot. It'll be a good race, but I think we have the kind of car that can go a couple of rounds tomorrow."

Arana chased an engine gremlin on the Lucas Oil Buell and wound up in theeighth spot on the ladder after a best pass ofv.998 seconds at 188.62 mph. He goes up against No.w qualifierDavid Hopewho had a best pass ofv.981 at 190.43 mph.

He said an extra part a fan gave him was the solution to his problem.

"Something funny happened to me this weekend. A fan gave me a little bell you put on your street bike to keep the gremlins away," Arana said. "I think it works! Seriously, we've been working the bugs out. The last run the bike left hard, so the clutch is way off. But the bike didn't seem to want to slow down in top gears, so I'm feeling good about what we'll be able to do on Sunday."

-source: lucas oil racing

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Larry Morgan , Vieri Gaines , Bob Vandergriff , David Hope , Shawn Langdon