Earlville: Lee Callaway preview

EARLVILLE, Iowa - Throughout his career, NHRA Federal Mogul Dragster driver Lee Callaway's performance could be called 'average.' He always has been a contender anywhere he goes, but never has been one of the front runners in the class. During...

EARLVILLE, Iowa - Throughout his career, NHRA Federal Mogul Dragster driver Lee Callaway's performance could be called 'average.' He always has been a contender anywhere he goes, but never has been one of the front runners in the class. During this weekend's NHRA Division 5 Federal Mogul Drag Racing Series event at Tri-State Raceway in Earlville, Iowa, Callaway will take a huge step to becoming one of those front runners with the assistance of new tuning consultant Ora Vasquez.

Callaway's new tuner, Vasquez, has a long and distinguished resume when it comes to tuning top-caliber alcohol cars. Among the list of teams that he has helped over the years include World Champions like the late Blaine Johnson (Top Alcohol Dragster - 4 World Championships), Pat Austin (Federal Mogul Funny Car - 6 World Championships), and most recently Joe Fuentes, who was one of the top cars in the country before leaving the drag racing scene earlier in the year. Callaway is excited about his chances with Vasquez.

"Hopefully we can clone Joe's [Fuentes] whole engine and clutch program," said Callaway, of Baytown, Texas. "We're going to put the same tune-up on it, and see if we can get it to work with my chassis. We have a Chuck Haase' chassis, and Joe had a Brad Hadman. We hope to go out here and use this weekend as a test session going into our final national events and final Division 4 race."

Callaway has run a career best run of 5.53 seconds this year. With Vasquez on board, given the right conditions, Callaway feels they should be able to better that time this weekend in Iowa.

"It would be nice to run better than that .53," stated Callaway. "But, I'm not familiar with the track. The track record is only a 5.56. I don't know if the track is green, or if the track will hold it. I just want to be competitive with any blown car this weekend, regardless of the number."

Qualifying begins 4 p.m. Friday for the Federal Mogul Dragsters, with two more sessions on Saturday. Final eliminations will conclude the event on Sunday.

-Callaway Racing

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