Lucas Oil's Morgan survives crazy week, qualifies 11th in Denver
MORRISON, CO – Qualifying No. 11 for Sunday's Pro Stock eliminations at the 33rd annual Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals has been one of the few strokes of good fortune that have blessed driver Larry Morgan and the Lucas Oil Ford Mustang team this week.
Morgan spent much of the week in New York climbing stairways in un-air conditioned buildings looking for a place for his son to live when school starts in the fall. When the time finally came to head to Bandimere Speedway on Friday, he had to endure an eight-hour flight delay.
"That's the world of drag racing for you," Morgan said. "Trying to get here on Friday, our plane broke and the airline had to fly the part and the mechanic in to fix the problem. We barely missed the first session. We were just coming up the hill when the last pair of Pro Stock cars were at the line.
"If they would have finished with the plane 15 minutes earlier we would have been able to make that run."
As it was, Morgan put together a 7.046 second run at 195.70 mph during qualifying to land in the No. 11 spot.
"The car has good speed," Morgan said. "Every time down the track this weekend, we hit a spot where it feels like the car runs out of gas. It feels like the thing just stops then starts up again.
"I think we've got a valve somewhere that is given out and leaking. We'll fix it tonight and should pick up some more ET when we race in the morning."
In Round 1, Morgan will face No. 6 qualifier Erica Enders, who had a best qualifying pass of 6.989 seconds at 196.07 mph.
"After everything that's happened this week, I'm just happy I have someone to race," Morgan said. "It's a good opportunity to win a round or two here.
"I love the way the Bandimeres put on a show, but the altitude gives me fits. We'll give it all we've got in the morning."
Eliminations at Bandimere Raceway get under way at 11 a.m. MDT on Sunday.