Lucas riding high after first career Top Fuel victory St. LOUIS (April 24) -- Fresh off his first career Top Fuel victory at the NHRA tour's last stop in Atlanta, Morgan Lucas and his GEICO Powersports/Lucas Oil dragster team arrive at Gateway...
Lucas riding high after first career Top Fuel victory
St. LOUIS (April 24) -- Fresh off his first career Top Fuel victory at the NHRA tour's last stop in Atlanta, Morgan Lucas and his GEICO Powersports/Lucas Oil dragster team arrive at Gateway International Raceway with the hottest car in the sport's top class.
"This has been the best time of my life," Lucas said. "The phone calls and e-mails haven't stopped and every time you talk to someone you get to relive the excitement of the win all over again. It's such an awesome feeling. I haven't stopped smiling since they handed me that Wally (trophy). My cheeks have literally been hurting because I've been smiling so much."
Lucas isn't new to winning as he claimed 10 national event victories in the Top Alcohol Dragster class, which features cars that are just one step down from a Top Fuel dragster. But his April 19th win at Atlanta Dragway was his first in drag racing's most elite category.
"It was a long time coming," Lucas said. "In our first 20 races in Top Fuel we went to five final rounds so we were so close it just seemed like it was going to happen any time. Then we went through a few years where we couldn't even get to the final and it just crushed us. But these guys never gave up. We just kept after it and now we have an awesome racecar again.
"There were times in the past where I dreaded going to the next race because I was so frustrated with the car. Now I can't wait to get back in there and make a pass."
Lucas' big weekend in the Deep South lifted him into the top five of the Full Throttle championship points and pulled him within a five rounds of leader Tony Schumacher.
"Credit my crew chief Jimmy Walsh and the crew because they've stuck with the game plan Jimmy laid out at the beginning of the season," Lucas said. "We've had moments this year where we could have panicked but Jimmy knew what he wanted to do and where he wanted to go with the tune-up and it's finally showing itself.
"I think the synergy between our side of the pit and the Lucas Oil side with my teammate Shawn Langdon's car also is helping a bunch. John Stewart is the crew chief over there and him and Jimmy work really well together. That car is ready to win and I can't wait for the first time it's me against Shawn in the final. That will be all-time."