Pomona II: Clay Millican preview

Chicago - Top Fuel driver Clay Millican of Team 104+ Octane Boost/Lehman Racing will compete in his 12th and final NHRA race of the season at the Auto Club of Southern California Finals on November 6-9 at the Pomona Raceway in Pomona,...

Chicago - Top Fuel driver Clay Millican of Team 104+ Octane Boost/Lehman Racing will compete in his 12th and final NHRA race of the season at the Auto Club of Southern California Finals on November 6-9 at the Pomona Raceway in Pomona, Calif.

This marks the third straight year that Millican has competed in the race. His best showing was in 2001 when he held the number five qualifying spot, and defeated Scott Weis and Doug Herbert before losing to eventual winner Kenny Bernstein in the semi-finals.

Millican, who recently won his third consecutive IHRA Top Fuel Championship, hopes for a successful finish to the end of his NHRA season as well. He is currently in 15th place in the NHRA Top Fuel points standings, an impressive feat considering that he has raced in only 11 of the 22 events that have taken place this season.

"Pomona has been really good for our team the years we've been there, and it has been very good for crew chief Mike Kloeber over his career, so I think it is a race that we certainly can win," said Millican. "It would be awesome for my last pass of the season to be a winning one."

In his last race, the NHRA ACDelco Nationals in Las Vegas, Millican made one of the most exciting passes of his career in the first round, where he beat 2003 NHRA POWERade Top Fuel points champion Larry Dixon for the first time ever. This was Dixon's only first-round loss of the 2003 season. Millican lost to Scott Kalitta in the quarterfinals after smoking the tires of the Team 104+ Octane Boost/Lehman Racing Top Fuel dragster at half-track.

Prior to the race in Las Vegas, Millican made an emotional showing at the O'Reilly Fall Nationals in Dallas, Texas. Two days before the race, his mother, Martha Millican, was shot in the head at the family's country store in his hometown of Drummonds, Tenn. His mother, who is now out of the hospital and is expected to make a full recovery, urged him to compete in the Fall Nationals. He qualified in fifth place, and lost in the first round of eliminations to Jim Head. This was only the second time of the season that Millican lost in the first round.

Millican has qualified for eliminations in all of the NHRA races in which he has competed this year, and was the number two qualifier in three of those races. He is viewed as an up-and-coming star in the league.

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Series NHRA
Drivers Jim Head , Doug Herbert , Clay Millican , Larry Dixon , Kenny Bernstein , Scott Weis , Scott Kalitta