RICHMOND (Apr. 24) - Larry Dixon has done just about everything there is to do as a drag racer at Virginia Motorsports Park-except take a trip to Winner's Circle. Dixon's 1995 Rookie of the Year campaign saw him win the pole en route to a first...
RICHMOND (Apr. 24) - Larry Dixon has done just about everything there is to do as a drag racer at Virginia Motorsports Park-except take a trip to Winner's Circle.
Dixon's 1995 Rookie of the Year campaign saw him win the pole en route to a first round finish. The following year he qualified No. 2 before posting a second round finish, while Dixon's third trip to Virginia resulted in a No. 4 qualifying effort and another first rounder. The 1998 event was one to forget for the driver who failed to qualify for the race, marking only the second time in his career he failed to make the field of 16 for Sunday's elimination round.
Last year marked a turning point for Dixon at VMP as the Miller Lite Dragster reached the final round and claimed a runner up finish, the team's best effort in the five year history of the meet. In fact, if Dixon were a baseball player, the only two "hits" remaining in order for him to hit for the cycle would be a semi-final finish-or a win- both of which would help Dixon cover all his bases this weekend a the Moto1.net Nationals (Apr. 27-30).
"The race track at Richmond is a very good one, it is just very particular," said Dixon. "When the weather there is good, we can see cars running national record type numbers. If the weather is bad though, really hot and humid, it makes getting down the track really, really difficult. VMP is one of the most finicky tracks we race on all year. This season will be the sixth year at VMP, and we have seen just about everything in terms of how the weather can effect the track. Sometimes it is just real tough when the weather is bad and we need to play it by ear. That's why I think (crew chief) Dick LaHaie will help us improve. He seems to have a good handle on these finesse type tracks."
Despite the recent improvements to the track surface, extending the concrete pad farther down the quarter mile track than it has been in previous years, Dixon does not feel that will play a major role in the performance of the top fuel field.
"We all have to race on the same track," said Dixon. "No matter how far the concrete runs, there is a point where it turns into asphalt. That is where the challenge comes… when you are trying to get the cars down that portion of the track."
Larry Dixon to Speak with Richmond Area Drag Race Fans NHRA Top Fuel driver Larry Dixon will be making several interviews this week throughout the Richmond area where he will be speaking with drag racing fans. Moto1.net Nationals:
Date & Time Location Thur, 4/27 5-5:30 p.m. WJRV, 105.7, LIVE in-studio
6-10 p.m. Kozak Beverage distributor party
Fri, 4/28 8-8:30 a.m. LIVE on WKHK 95.3 FM
3:30 & 7:30 Qualifying sessions #1 & #2
Sat, 4/29 Noon & 4 Qualifying sessions #3 & #4
Sun, 4/30 11:00 a.m. Eliminations begin