Las Vegas II: Morgan Lucas Racing final report

Leaving Las Vegas, Team Lucas looking to Pomona LAS VEGAS (Nov. 1) -- Parts failure in the hot rods of teammates Morgan Lucas and Shawn Langdon resulted in a pair of first-round for the two Team Lucas racers. Team owner/driver Lucas bowed to ...

Leaving Las Vegas, Team Lucas looking to Pomona

LAS VEGAS (Nov. 1) -- Parts failure in the hot rods of teammates Morgan Lucas and Shawn Langdon resulted in a pair of first-round for the two Team Lucas racers. Team owner/driver Lucas bowed to championship contender and top qualifier Larry Dixon when his GEICO Powersports/Lucas Oil dragster broke its crankshaft, while Langdon was eliminated by his good friend, Spencer Massey, when his Lucas Oil/Dixie Chopper dragster dropped a cylinder early in his run.

"It's a disappointing finish to this race but in the big picture this in only the third time all year that both of us lost in Round 1," Lucas said. "That's not bad considering the competition in this class. Parts are going to break when you push them to the absolute limit like we do every day. It just bit us both in the same round.

"We're going to stay and test tomorrow. We're staying in town for the SEMA show any way and there are some things we want to work on so it made sense to keep the cars here and make some passes. This is just a bump in the road. We'll be back in Pomona in two weeks ready to win another race."

Lucas can take pride in the fact he left on Dixon, posting a .032-second reaction time ahead of Dixon's .049-second start. But Lucas' engine soon began to deteriorate, which allowed Dixon to streak by and take the win with a 3.834 at 318.24 mph -- the best pass of the opening round.

On the other side of the ladder, Langdon and Massey raced side-by-side most of the way down the 1,000-foot course at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway until the tell-tale sign of smoke from one side of Langdon's motor signaled problems in a cylinder. The subsequent loss of power gave Massey the edge he needed and he won with a 3.836 at 316.38 mph to Langdon's 3.932 at 298.73 mph.

"I never would have expected that to happen considering the way this car ran in qualifying but it did," Langdon said. "I know everyone on the team was amped up for today because we felt like we could contend for the win but instead we're out early. All you can do is move on and get ready for Pomona.

"At least we have the car running like it was earlier in the year when we went on a great streak of semifinal appearances. I think we'll be just fine."

The season-ending 45th annual Auto Club NHRA Finals take place Nov. 12-15 at Auto Club Raceway in Pomona, Calif.

-credit: mlr

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Larry Dixon , Morgan Lucas , Shawn Langdon , Spencer Massey