Lucas powers to No. 2 slot in Seattle, Langdon in the mix SEATTLE (July 17) -- No one expected Pacific Raceways to be as hot as it was Friday during the first two qualifying rounds for the NHRA Northwest Nationals and the heat caused fits for...
Lucas powers to No. 2 slot in Seattle, Langdon in the mix
SEATTLE (July 17) -- No one expected Pacific Raceways to be as hot as it was Friday during the first two qualifying rounds for the NHRA Northwest Nationals and the heat caused fits for many of the drivers. Yet fifth-year pro Morgan Lucas looked like a seasoned veteran in posting the second-best time of the day, a 3.909 at 299.33 mph to put himself in position for a great Sunday.
Lucas teammate Shawn Langdon would have been right there with him if not for a faulty valve spring that robbed him of a little performance. Nevertheless, his 3.976 at 297.68 mph placed him 10th overall and leaves plenty of room for improvement.
"It was really hot in Q1, probably 125 degrees or so, and the track couldn't quite hold what everyone was throwing at it," said the 25-year-old Lucas, the youngest professional in the nitro ranks. "Jimmy (Walsh, crew chief) liked the way that first run looked and didn't change much for Round 2. We just kind of let the track come to us and when it cooled down a little for Q2 we were able to make it stick.
"I'm happy with where we're at right now. I feel like we've made a lot of progress with both cars in the last two races and that's a direct result of the incredible amount of hard work these two crews have out in to make these cars better."
Langdon was on par to run a similar number to Lucas before the engine on his Lucas Oil/Dixie Chopper dragster started coming apart near the top end. He slowed just enough to drop down to 10th place.
"We went down the track both runs, which is good," said Langdon said. "We just weren't as quick as we'd like to be. It's supposed to cool off a little overnight and I really hope it does because we're ready to step it up and go fast. It's important to improve at least a couple of spots and get in the top half of the field before Sunday.
"Times like these are when it's really beneficial to have a teammate because Stewie (tuner John Stewart) can run over there and have a look at the data from Morgan's run. His car was hauling down there and that was really good to see."
Qualifying resumes at noon and 2:30 p.m. Saturday.