Denver: Larry Morgan preview

Morgan looks to elevate his game at Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals MORRISON, Colo. (July 14, 2004) - Now that Larry Morgan is part of the Don Schumacher Racing empire, the driver of the Team Mopar Dodge Stratus in the Pro Stock category of the...

Morgan looks to elevate his game at Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals

MORRISON, Colo. (July 14, 2004) - Now that Larry Morgan is part of the Don Schumacher Racing empire, the driver of the Team Mopar Dodge Stratus in the Pro Stock category of the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, is enjoying new opportunities to elevate his game. Morgan and crew chief Bob Glidden came to Bandimere Speedway following the last event at Gateway International Raceway to test for the upcoming Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals and came away with promising results.

"We went to Bandimere and tested right after St. Louis and we ran really well," said Morgan. "We were the quickest car up until we quit. Jason Line went a hundredth and a half (of a second) faster than we did, but the air was like 20 degrees cooler at that time. We ran very quick under hotter conditions, so we're pretty excited about coming to the Mopar Mile-High Nationals this weekend."

Morgan has nine career Pro Stock wins, including a 1990 victory at Bandimere.

Since the legendary Glidden joined the team in April 2003, Morgan has steadily moved up the rankings. After not qualifying for the first 11 events in 2003 and again at the 13th event at Bandimere, Morgan qualified in each remaining venue and ended the 2003 season 11th in points after reaching three semifinal rounds following seven top-10 qualifiers.

He expects even better results for the remainder of the 2004 season. He is fifth in the point standings and it's no secret that he and Don Schumacher would like to dethrone dominating champion Greg Anderson in 2005. "We have picked up a little bit since we have been hooked up with Don Schumacher, there's no doubt," said Morgan. "We're looking forward to racing at Bandimere. I think we will definitely go faster and quicker. We made some changes that we wouldn't have made and we think that that will help. Hopefully this association with Don Schumacher Racing will take us to the next level and that's what it's all about."

Racing at altitude and in heat is always an issue for the Pro Stockers, said Morgan, of Newark, Ohio. "The trouble we have is that the carburetors are real hard to tune at altitude. The blower (Nitro) cars aren't so bad, but our cars are real hard to tune here and there's a lot to be gained if you do have your tuning right. The gear ratios are also a big thing. I think if you have your engine combination right here you'll do well.

"For the most part, it's a tuning track, and I'm sure the Fuel guys will agree with me on that."

As a member of Team Mopar, winning the Mopar Mile-High Nationals would be a dream come true for Morgan. "You've always got pressure on you to win," he said. "I don't let that bother me because I can only do the best I can do. I'm going to try hard, that's for sure. It would sure be nice to win the Mopar race driving a Mopar car."

Pro qualifying begins on Friday, July 16, with two sessions scheduled for 4:15 p.m. and 7:15 p.m. On Saturday, pro qualifying will continue at 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. Final eliminations on Sunday begin at 12:30 p.m.

On Saturday, July 17, ESPN2 will televise two hours of qualifying highlights at 8 p.m. (ET). On Sunday, July 18, ESPN2 will televise 150 minutes of eliminations at 9 p.m. (ET). On Sunday, July 18, ESPN2 will televise NHRA 2Day, a 30-minute magazine show at 11:30 a.m. (ET).

-dsr-

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Series NHRA
Drivers Greg Anderson , Larry Morgan , Bob Glidden , Jason Line , Don Schumacher