Seattle: Duane Shield preview

KENT, Wash. - After winning his second divisional event of the year just two weeks ago in Woodburn, Ore., NHRA Federal Mogul Dragster driver Duane Shields is ready to do battle once again with a "take no prisoners" attitude during this weekend's...

KENT, Wash. - After winning his second divisional event of the year just two weeks ago in Woodburn, Ore., NHRA Federal Mogul Dragster driver Duane Shields is ready to do battle once again with a "take no prisoners" attitude during this weekend's Prolong Northwest Nationals presented by Napa Auto Parts at Seattle International Raceway just outside of Seattle. The driver of the world's fastest Blown Alcohol Dragster plans to show the rest of the Federal Mogul Dragster field that he is out of his slump, and ready to business this weekend.

Shields has consistently had one of the fastest cars at the track at every event he has attended this year. However, it seems a cloud of bad luck and parts breakage has followed the Las Vegas racer this year. He currently sits sixth in national points, and hopes add a win to his points total this weekend.

"We want to come out aggressive," said Shields. "That's been our approach the last couple of races. We want to get down the track and put down a nice number, and then fine tune from there. We just want to make sure we don't have the little breakage problems that we have had all year. We want to make sure we are ready for the next round, and that we stay focused to win the rounds."

Given the right conditions, Shields feels that 5.3 second elapsed times at 260 + mph are possible in Seattle this weekend.

"I'd love to run in the high 5.30's there," stated Shields. "They could be possible, depending on the weather. Low 5.40's should be fairly reasonable with the track there. With the field we will have competing there, big numbers are possible."

With the season past it's midpoint, Shields looks at the second half as a fresh start to make a run towards a strong standing in national points. He also wants to avoid the parts breakage that has caused several round losses this year.

"I think that our primary focus is that we have a fast car, and we need to work on the consistency," explained Shields. "We've had little gremlins throughout the year that have cost us rounds. We need to stay focused and make sure we have everything as ready as we can. I think that if we can make that the case, then we'll win rounds."

Qualifying begins Friday for the Federal Mogul Dragsters with two qualifying sessions. They will have one more session on Saturday followed by round one of eliminations. Final eliminations will conclude the event on Sunday.

-DSR

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