Lucas ready to regroup, looking for better times ahead
POMONA, Calif. (Nov. 13) – Morgan Lucas and the GEICO/Lucas Oil Top Fuel ended the 2011 NHRA Full Throttle Series season with a second round finish at the NHRA Finals.
"It's a good point for us to regroup and get ready for next season around," Lucas said.
Lucas, who qualified No. 5, started the day with a victory over Troy Buff. Lucas was at a slight disadvantage off the starting line, but it was soon immaterial Buff spun the tires and Lucas zoomed to a pass of 4.132 seconds at 230.10 mph.
"We had a mechanical issue and it dropped a cylinder early in the run," Lucas said. "We made it through but didn't get the problem solved before the second run."
That set up a second round matchup with championship contender Spencer Massey, who needed a win over Lucas to keep is title hopes alive.
Massey was first off the line and didn't look back. Massey ran a 3.846 second pass at 316.15 mph. Lucas suffered mechanical problems and crossed the line in 4.206 seconds at 225.07 mph.
"It's unbelievably frustrating," Lucas said. "We had a chance to knock Spencer out of the championship and we didn't get it done."
Lucas said that the round win sent a jolt of confidence through the GEICO crew, which had fought through a rough home stretch of the season.
"The team seemed content with the way we ended at this event," Lucas said. "We need to find out why we are dropping holes. I think I know why. It's one of those where we need to pay closer attention and catch it next time."
Lucas ends the season with one victory and a 10th place finish overall.
"We had some highs and lows this season," Lucas said. "But I think we learned a lot and have a lot to work on over the offseason to improve our performance and consistency. It's a challenge that everyone on the GEICO team is looking forward to."