JOLIET, Ill. - It has been a very up and down season for NHRA Federal Mogul Dragster driver David Wells. At his past two races in Topeka, Kan., the former Division 5 Champion has been plagued with parts breakage problems that have lead to early...
JOLIET, Ill. - It has been a very up and down season for NHRA Federal Mogul Dragster driver David Wells. At his past two races in Topeka, Kan., the former Division 5 Champion has been plagued with parts breakage problems that have lead to early round exits. Route 66 Raceway, where this weekend's Lucas Oil Products Nationals will be held, has been a favorable track for Wells this year. Last month, Wells won the Division 3 opener there, and hopes to pick up another win this weekend.
Wells, from LeMars, Iowa, overcame a bit of adversity to pick up his win at Route 66. In the first round, a front a-frame broke off the car, taking one of his front tires with it at over 240 mph. Wells wrestled the car back under control and took the win. He then had a fuel system problem that slowed him down in the semifinal, but not enough for Dave Hirata to beat him. In the final, he pulled out the stops to run a 5.52 to defeat Shawn Bowen. This weekend, Wells is hoping for less adversity, and more 5.4 - 5.5 second elapsed times.
"We're going to go in there with our basic setup that won the race there earlier," said Wells. "We are going to keep working with our clutch setup to try to get it to come around and be consistent. That's what we are looking for: to get down the track, and run consistent."
Wells also hopes to put the parts breakage of his past two outings behind him as well.
"We try to stick to the same gameplan for every race," stated Wells. "We've just been having some breakage, that really wasn't caused by anything. We went back with the exact same tune-up after we killed the first motor last weekend, and ran a .53. That tells you it's not the tune-up, just parts failure. The next motor was just a broke valve. Same deal, put the motor back together, same tune-up, and it went down the track. There isn't much you can do about that when it's not a problem with the tune-up."
"You just have to put it behind you," continued Wells. "You can't let it bother you. It bothers me about the money, but there's really nothing you can do about it. What's done is done, it's over with; it's water over the dam."
Wells feels that NHRA's national event track preparation will make it easier to run good numbers than it was at the divisional there.
"It's all relative to the track what we will run," explained Wells. "That's what the trouble was last time, the track was really touchy, and you couldn't really put any power to it. At a national event, the track is usually a little better. But, in Topeka, on Sunday, the track was actually worse. You never know."
Qualifying will begin at 11:30 a.m. for the Federal Mogul Dragsters with another session following at 2:30 p.m. On Saturday, they will have the final qualifying session, followed by round one. Final eliminations will conclude the event on Sunday. Stay tuned to SummitRacing.com's Drag Race Central for round by round updates of the action from Chicago.