Bittersweet day for Morgan Lucas Racing POMONA, Calif. (Nov. 14) -- The tewo Top Fuel dragsters fielded by Morgan Lucas Racing have been chasing the track surface at Pomona Raceway all weekend long during the 45th annual Automobile Club of ...
Bittersweet day for Morgan Lucas Racing
POMONA, Calif. (Nov. 14) -- The tewo Top Fuel dragsters fielded by Morgan Lucas Racing have been chasing the track surface at Pomona Raceway all weekend long during the 45th annual Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals.
Neither Morgan Lucas' GEICO Powersports/Lucas Oil dragster nor Shawn Langdon's Lucas Oil/Speedco dragster wanted to get down the track in the kind of smooth way the teams had grown accustomed to throughout the season.
Lucas' team was able to get it all pulled together by the time Saturday's racing ended and he managed to qualify in the top half of the field. Langdon and his crew never did get their issues sorted out and the group suffered their first DNQ of the season.
Lucas started the day in the 11th qualifying position which is where he remained after Saturday's first of two rounds of qualifying. The day's racing stretched longer which made conditions better, which Lucas capitalized on. The GEICO Powersports/Lucas Oil dragster ran a 3.844 second lap at 310.48 mph to vault into the No. 8 starting spot.
"That's definitely a lot better than shaking the tires," Lucas said. "It's mixed emotions, though, with Shawn not making it. But I'm excited for tomorrow. All our family and friends are out and I grew up around here, and hopefully we'll do well."
Lucas has a first-round matchup with Australian native Dave Grubnic, who ran a 3.852 at 317.42 mph to qualify No. 9. Lucas and Grubnic will likely be the first pair out when eliminations begin at 11 a.m. Sunday.
It was a frustrating way for Langdon to end a spectacular rookie season in the Lucas Oil rail. In his first pass Saturday, the tires shook early in the run and he had to shut down. In his final do-or-die run in the afternoon, the car's engine let go, ending his hopes of qualifying.
To top it off, Langdon's father, Chad, crashed his '51 Henry J Super Gas entry after it went out of control just past the finish line during that category's eliminations. Fortunately, Chad Langdon was evaluated and released by NHRA emergency officials.
"It's very unfortunate for this Lucas Oil team," Langdon said. "We had some opportunities and didn't capitalize on them. We wanted to put on a great show and unfortunately we were one of the leakers. We apologize to the fans for leaving a little oil on the track. We'll be back next year."