Charlotte II: Lucas Oil Racing final report

Lucas Oil racers have difficult day in Charlotte CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Sept. 19) -- Mechanical issues have plagued Shawn Langdon's Lucas Oil/Speedco Top Fuel dragster all season long, and Sunday at the O'Reilly Auto Parts Nationals, they reared their...

Lucas Oil racers have difficult day in Charlotte

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Sept. 19) -- Mechanical issues have plagued Shawn Langdon's Lucas Oil/Speedco Top Fuel dragster all season long, and Sunday at the O'Reilly Auto Parts Nationals, they reared their ugly head at just the wrong time.

Langdon, who reached the semifinals at the U.S. Nationals last time out, had a sparkplug wire go bad in the first round on Sunday. Running on seven cylinders, Langdon wasn't able to best Rod Fuller.

"The plug wire failure caused us to drop the No. 7 hole on the step," Langdon said. "It was very unfortunate for us."

The misfortune didn't end there for Lucas Oil racers in Charlotte. Hector Arana fell in the first round in Pro Stock Motorcycle racing and Larry Morgan suffered a red light in the first round in Pro Stock.

Langdon's underpowered car ran a 4.038 second pass at 296.89 mph, as Fuller pulled away with a 3.890 at 318.54 mph.

"You are going to run into parts failures, that's part of drag racing," Langdon said. "These little mistakes, these little things have cost us all year long."

It was never more costly as on Sunday when Langdon dropped from fourth in the points to seventh. He is 12 points behind Antron Brown for sixth and 38 behind Brandon Bernstein for fifth.

"We want to finish the season in the top five," Langdon said. "Our car is totally capable of that."

Arana's Lucas Oil Buell fell to Matt Smith in the first round when Smith got a strong start and cruised to a 6.994 at 188.33 mph. Arana finished with a 7.033 at 183.34 mph.

"There's something going on," Arana said. "I tore (the bike) down, literally, we took everything off. We thought we found something, and it's still there. I just don't know what it is.

b^0x001cWe can definitely rule out that it's mechanical. It's something electrical or in the ECU. We even had the injector tested. It does it when it wants to. It's not something that it does every pass and we can start tracing it or get a sense for it. It has a mind of its own."

Arana is now fifth in the championship standings, 176 points behind leader Andrew Hines.

Morgan and the Lucas Oil Ford Mustang was .010 second away from a perfect light against Greg Anderson.

"We just missed the tree by a little bit," Morgan said. "The car is going in the right direction and we can't wait to get to the next stop."

Up next for the Lucas Oil drivers is the Sept. 23-26 O'Reilly Auto Parts Super Start Batteries Nationals at Texas Motorplex outside Dallas.

-source: lor

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Antron Brown , Greg Anderson , Brandon Bernstein , Andrew Hines , Matthew Smith , Rod Fuller