Lucas Oil teammates leave Seattle wanting more SEATTLE (July 19) -- Morgan Lucas and his teammate Shawn Langdon woke up Sunday morning convinced they had a pair of racecars capable of racing for the trophy of the NHRA Northwest Nationals. Ion...
Lucas Oil teammates leave Seattle wanting more
SEATTLE (July 19) -- Morgan Lucas and his teammate Shawn Langdon woke up Sunday morning convinced they had a pair of racecars capable of racing for the trophy of the NHRA Northwest Nationals. Ion the end, they had to settle for a couple of round wins and some upward progress in the Full Throttle point standings.
Lucas opened his day in the GEICO Powersports/Lucas Oil dragster with a solid 3.921-second, 305.63-mph victory over Steve Chrisman, who ran a competitive 3.994 at 291.63 mph. His strong pass earned him lane choice against second-round foe Antron Brown, the current point leader. Unfortunately, a few leak after the burnout limited any chance he had of winning and Brown was able to take the upset win with a 3.987 at 282.54 mph to Lucas' resigned 8.399 at 93.16 mph.
"We had a fuel leak at the starting line, the cause of which is yet to be determined, and that probably cost us the run," Lucas said. "We smoked the tires right at the hit but I'm not sure whether the liquid on the ground caused that or not. It really doesn't matter. The bottom line is we didn't turn on the win light.
"We had a car capable of winning this race, no doubt about it. The guys were so pumped up this morning, ready to go four rounds and get a trophy. It just didn't happen for us today.
We're still making progress and we gained on a couple of the guys ahead of us in the points so we'll try to go to Sonoma, my favorite racetrack in the world, and do better."
Langdon opened with the run of the meet, a streaking 3.885 at 307.51 mph that was more than enough to dismiss Doug Kalitta, who went 3.959 at 308. 21 mph. His elapsed time was the best of any session.
He lined up against Troy Buff next and earned a huge jump at the start, leaving in .055 seconds to Buff's .091-second launch. But his Lucas Oil/Dixie Chopper dragster dropped a cylinder almost immediately and the consequential loss of power allowed Buff to get by and win with a 3.999 at 290.19 mph to Langdon's 4.083 at 281.48 mph.
"I heard him right there next to me for most of the way down and finally saw the nose of his car right at the end," Langdon said. "It's hard to feel a dropped cylinder when it happens right at the hit because you're not suddenly losing power, you just never get it to begin with. I knew we had backed it down for the heat but it wasn't until I was well down the track that I realized it wasn't on a very good pass, especially compared to the one from earlier.
"It's big for us to run low E.T. of the race because it shows we're capable of running with anyone and even better than everyone else at times. We're carrying a lot of confidence into Sonoma. We'll be ready to race."
The 22nd annual Fram-Autolite NHRA Nationals begin Friday at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif.