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Aug 17, 2014 - 06:56 AM
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2014 NHRA: Lucas Knows There Is Winning Potential In Lucas Oil/Geico Dragster
Posted by: newsla on Aug 17, 2014 - 06:52 AM
2014 NHRA: Lucas Knows There Is Winning Potential In Lucas Oil/Geico Dragster

Top Fuel driver Morgan Lucas hopes to show the potential of the Lucas Oil/GEICO dragster during eliminations of the Lucas Oil Nationals on Sunday at Brainerd International Raceway.


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Lucas qualified No. 12 for his family's namesake race despite not being able to make a full pass during qualifying. His best run of 3.883 seconds at 286.98 mph locked him in the field, and he'll race No. 5 qualifier Bob Vandergriff in the first round.

Vandergriff, who made a top pass of 3.835 seconds at 318.84 mph, is fighting for a spot in the Countdown to the Championship. A round win by Lucas would help Morgan Lucas Racing teammate Richie Crampton, who is ninth in the Top Fuel points standings.

"Bob Vandergriff's tough," Lucas said. "He's hungry right now and wants to get in the Countdown. It's not going to be the easiest thing to do to overcome this matchup, but we know we're going to go up there and put up a fight. That would help Richie out and would keep them going down the right track, too."

Lucas is racing in his third event this season, reaching the semifinals in both prior races, at Gainesville and Englishtown.

"We were fighting a steady ignition problem all weekend," Lucas said. "It was there, but we thought something else was wrong. It reared its head really bad in Q3 today."

But Lucas, with assistance from Crampton crew chief Aaron Brooks, made the fix for the final qualifying session.

"Basically, our Q4 run was like our first run of the weekend," Lucas said. "We were fortunate enough to get far enough down the track Friday night to keep us in. Now, we have something to work with.

"We've got to tickle a couple things, and I think we'll have a car that can run out there and go down the track and run .82, .83, .84 like anybody else's."

Lucas, the 2009 and 2012 Brainerd winner, is enjoying his weekend at the Lucas Oil Nationals with his dad and mom, Forrest and Charlotte Lucas, as well as his entire crew.

Only two things are missing.

"I do have a lot of fun," Lucas said. "But more than anything I miss my wife Katie and son Hunter. I'm excited that they're going to be out there with me in Indianapolis, hanging out, supporting the team. I do miss them, and I think that's the only way it could be better, is having them here."

Qualifying action from BIR will air at 10 p.m. CT, Saturday, on ESPN2. Top Fuel eliminations begin at 11 a.m., Sunday, with ESPN2 airing all the action in tape-delay beginning at 8 p.m. CT.

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