BECKMAN PREPARES FOR RECORD SETTING RUNS IN CHICAGO JOLIET, Ill. -- The weather forecast for this weekend's Ameriquest NHRA Nationals at Route 66 Raceway calls for clear skies and cool fall temperatures and for Top Fuel driver "Fast Jack"...
BECKMAN PREPARES FOR RECORD SETTING RUNS IN CHICAGO
JOLIET, Ill. -- The weather forecast for this weekend's Ameriquest NHRA Nationals at Route 66 Raceway calls for clear skies and cool fall temperatures and for Top Fuel driver "Fast Jack" Beckman that means a chance to update his resume with a career-best elapsed time. Beckman, the driver of the Menards/Mail Terminal Services Top Fuel dragster, ran a personal best 4.563 elapsed time at the recent NHRA POWERade series event in Brainerd, Minn., but he believes that he can easily eclipse that number this weekend.
"The track in Joliet is one of the best on the NHRA tour so there's no doubt in my mind that this car is capable of running in the low 4.50s or even the high 4.4-second zone this weekend," said Beckman, who will be making his ninth start in Top Fuel. "Ever since [crew chief] Jimmy Walsh made some changes to our engine combination this summer, we've been on the verge of busting out with a big number, and this is the perfect place for us to do it."
The Menards/MTS team also competed in the CARQUEST NHRA Nationals at Route 66 Raceway earlier this summer, so they will be able to use the data they gained at that event to help improve their performance this weekend. Beckman qualified with a then-career best 4.63 in his last trip to Joliet before falling to two-time NHRA POWERade champ Larry Dixon in round one.
"As a driver, I've learned so much since my last trip to Joliet," said Beckman, who is currently ranked 15th in the NHRA POWERade Top Fuel standings. "At the same time, I haven't been in the car since Labor Day [at the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals] so I'm really looking forward to getting back out there."
Beckman figures to be one of the busiest drivers in Joliet as he is also scheduled to compete in the Jeg's Sportsman Allstars race on Saturday, October 1. The Jeg's Allstars is a special event that features the 64 best sportsman drivers from NHRA's seven geographic divisions. Beckman was runner-up in the Super Comp category in 2004, and will return to the event as a blocker for his Division 7 teammates this year. In addition to the Menards/MTS Top Fuel dragster, Beckman will be driving John Coughlin's Jeg's Mail Order dragster in the Allstars competition. He is also scheduled to compete in Super Comp eliminations at the Ameriquest Nationals, giving him three opportunities to reach the winner's circle.
"While driving the Menards/MTS Top Fuel car remains my top priority, I'm excited to have another shot to win the Jeg's Allstars race," said Beckman. "I can't thank John Coughlin and the entire Jeg's Mail Order team enough for allowing me to use their car this weekend. I'll be driving the same car that Brad Plourd drove to a win at the U.S. Nationals a few weeks ago so I know I've got my work cut out for me. It should be a lot of fun."