Denver: Morgan Lucas preview

Lucas to implement new strategy on Western Swing DENVER (July 6) -- Top Fuel driver Morgan Lucas has one thing on his mind as the NHRA series prepares to begin its Western Swing of consecutive races in Denver, Seattle, and Sonoma, Calif. --...

Lucas to implement new strategy on Western Swing

DENVER (July 6) -- Top Fuel driver Morgan Lucas has one thing on his mind as the NHRA series prepares to begin its Western Swing of consecutive races in Denver, Seattle, and Sonoma, Calif. -- start having fun again.

"I'm tired of stressing out about everything," said Lucas, the youngest racer in the nitro ranks at 25 years of age. "Sometimes you forget how lucky we are to be doing what we do for a living. You get so caught up in trying to win races that you forget to enjoy yourself. Well, those days are over. We're gonna have some fun starting right now."

As such, Lucas and his GEICO Powersports/Lucas Oil crew, as well as teammate Shawn Langdon and the Lucas Oil/Dixie Chopper squad, will have a team outing Thursday. Thrill-seekers at heart, the group plans to go whitewater rafting together and have already instructed their guides to hold nothing back.

"We're going for it," Lucas said. "We're looking for a challenge and we're going to take on that river as a team. I can't wait to get started. My adrenaline is already pumping.

"To me, this might be the most important thing we do all year because we're doing it together. It's easy to get down when things don't go your way on at any given race but the bottom line is we're way ahead of where we were a year ago. When we won Atlanta earlier this year it was just a fun, laidback weekend. We just seem to perform better when we're all relaxed. We need to get back to that."

Including his victory in Atlanta, Lucas has amassed 13 round wins this season in his GEICO Powersports/Lucas Oil dragster. He's successfully qualified at the first 12 races of the year and has won at least one round in all but three of his starts.

"I think you always want more, no matter how things are going," Lucas said. "Even last year when Tony Schumacher was setting every record in the class he'd still talk about things they could do better. I guess that's how we're wired.

"Our car has been really great at times but we've also fallen short of our own expectations a time or two. That's part of racing. In talking with Jimmy (Walsh, crew chief) we've decided to go back to the more aggressive tune-up we used earlier in the year. This car just seems to like it better when we step on it. Of course, that makes you nervous at times, but we're going to get past that and start winning some races."

The 30th annual Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals begins with nitro qualifying sessions at 5:30 and 8 p.m. Friday at Bandimere Speedway.

-credit: lor

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Tony Schumacher , Morgan Lucas , Shawn Langdon