Shawn Langdon Atlanta preview

Atlanta Dragway

Langdon taking cues from teammate Lucas

ATLANTA -- Two years ago, Morgan Lucas bagged his first Top Fuel victory at the annual Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals to jumpstart a career season. Now Lucas' teammate, third-year pro Shawn Langdon, is hoping lightning strikes twice in the same spot for the powerful race team from Indianapolis.

Shawn Langdon aboard his Lucas Oil / Speedco Top Fuel Dragster
Shawn Langdon aboard his Lucas Oil / Speedco Top Fuel Dragster

Photo by: Ted Rossino

"We wouldn't bother going to a race if we didn't think we had a legitimate chance to win and this weekend is no different," Langdon said. "When I was racing in the Sportsman ranks and doing it all by myself, I was crazy about preparation. I had to check and double-check every little thing on the car to make sure I gave myself the best chance to win. It's no different now, except there's a whole crew of guys doing the work.

"If we could pull off a win like Morgan did in '09, that would be very, very gratifying. We got close in Pomona (Calif.) a few races back (with a runner-up result), so we certainly have shown we can get there. We just need to close out one of these races."

The similarities between Lucas' '09 visit to Atlanta Dragway and Langdon's current trip are eerie. In 2009, Lucas and his GEICO race team arrived in town fresh off a disappointing first-round upset loss in Las Vegas and had to battle numerous rain delays to final score their trophy late Sunday night.

This time through, Langdon and his Lucas Oil/Speedco dragster crew will pull into Atlanta Dragway still smarting from a DNQ at the last tour stop in Houston, and if pre-arranged by the racing gods, the forecast calls for another weekend of scattered rain.

"It looks like there will be a lot of variables to deal with," Langdon said. "It really is a lot like when Morgan won here. The weather looks a little dicey so it kind of changes your gameplan a little bit. You have to be ready to get your car down the track no matter what from the very first qualifying session. You have no idea how many chances you're going to have.

"What we have going for us is a very dedicated crew that can do the hard work it takes to prepare the car for whatever Mother Nature throws at us. Plus, no one is happy about Houston so we kind of feel like we have something to prove."

Langdon is currently eighth in the Full Throttle championship points but a strong weekend could lift him into the top five.

-source: morgan lucas racing

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Morgan Lucas , Shawn Langdon
Tags lucas oil, morgan lucas racing, southern nationals, top fuel