Lucas, Troxel National Time Trials 2007-01-27

MORGAN LUCAS RACING SETS SAIL FOR 2007 Lucas records quickest sportsman time of his career - 5.21 seconds PHOENIX (Jan. 27) -- Morgan Lucas Racing of Brownsburg, Indiana, took their first steps of 2007 and is quickly picking up the pace to a...

MORGAN LUCAS RACING SETS SAIL FOR 2007
Lucas records quickest sportsman time of his career - 5.21 seconds

PHOENIX (Jan. 27) -- Morgan Lucas Racing of Brownsburg, Indiana, took their first steps of 2007 and is quickly picking up the pace to a full run at the National Time Trials Test and Tune sessions at Firebird Raceway.

With the race teams of Morgan Lucas and Melanie Troxel hitting the quarter-mile for the first time of the season, it is steady as it goes with both drivers wanting to make sound progress before unleashing their potential with a full pass.

Lucas recorded his best run so far of the weekend with a half-track pass of 6.407 seconds at a coasting speed of 121.37 mph.

"Everything is going great with both of our Lucas Oil cars," said Lucas, still in pursuit of his first professional victory. "We're gaining ground on the Top Fuel car setup, but in our Top Alcohol car, we ran my career best sportsman time of 5.21 seconds (270.70 mph) on our third pass. That says a lot about our Lucas Oil Alcohol crew with Steve Boggs turning the wrenches along with everyone on our sportsman team. They already work so well together and with camaraderie like that, I feel we are definitely going to be challenging for the Lucas Oil Championship. On top of that, our Top Fuel team has made great strides in improvement with both of our pro teams working together. Melanie made her first attempt today and we're in the direction of making a good start. I'm real proud of everybody getting everything together and getting it out here to make the steps in testing."

Making plans to stage a two-car operation has been a major undertaking during the off-season. Besides his driving duties of two cars, he now also has the nearly overwhelming task of being team manager making sure all teams have what is needed and working with the crew chiefs of John Stewart and Ronnie Thompson on his team and Richard Hogan on Melanie's Top Fuel dragster.

"To see these cars start up and run out here is huge amount of pressure off my shoulders," said a relieved Lucas. "It's a sense of pride seeing everyone working together so well. I see good things in the future for our teams. We have to keep our heads in the game and it is what you make of it and now we're trying to make it the best."

Troxel, making her debut for the Lucas organization, was anxiously anticipating her first time behind the wheel of her Veterans Memorial/Lucas Oil/Torco Race Fuels dragster. In an expected maneuver, she did a quick launch to check all the specifics and was pleased with the quick outcome resulting in a time of 6.667 seconds at a speed of 121.09 mph, knowing very well, it's just the first measure.

"You're always excited to get out there and get the new season started," said Troxel, who set the NHRA record in 2006 after opening the season with five consecutive final round appearances with victories at Pomona and Las Vegas. "You have a little bit of those nervous butterflies until you get in the car and start it up. Then it all goes away and you get that comfort level back in the seat. We only went to 330 feet on that pass, but that was the plan to make sure we had everything set right on the car. We're happy to get all the gremlins out of the way and now we can go out and make a clean pass."

Both teams will continue to work hard pushing for a stronger outcome on Sunday to match the level of performance they desire.

-credit: lor

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Melanie Troxel , Morgan Lucas