Confident Millican Marching Into Joliet Leading Team Speed Society Into Second Half of NHRA Regular Season
Fresh off his second NHRA national event win, Team Speed Society Racing driver Clay ...
Fresh off his second NHRA national event win, Team Speed Society Racing driver Clay Millican and his Strutmasters/Great Clips/Parts Plus team are walking tall and bringing an extra rig for their confidence as the NHRA’s “regular season” enters its second half at Joliet, IL’s Route 66 Raceway. The Jets Route 66 NHRA Nationals is the 9th race of the 16 race period leading up to the Countdown to the Championship and Millican and his David Grubnic-tuned dragster have hit their stride, corralling their long-ball bravado into the consistency needed to go rounds. “We’re just gonna try our best to keep turning on those win lights. The only thing better that two Wally’s is three, and I can think of nothing better than winning back-to-back,” said Millican. “I have a lot of confidence that this team can get it done again in Joliet!” Millican enters the weekend in second place in the season points, 95 behind leader Steve Torrence.
Sitting three spots behind Millican in 5th place is Leah Pritchett. Pritchett, who just spent a weekend in Tennessee unplugged from the world to celebrate her 30th birthday, will be bringing back the familiar gold and black Papa John Pizza livery for the weekend as she looks to climb the standings following her win in Atlanta and quarterfinal showing at Topeka. “As the only DSR driver to not have a victory claimed at Route 66, it would be an honor to join my teammates with that accolade. First, we need have our strategy on-point for qualifying well in conditions different than race day, although all seem to be cool and call for incredible numbers that can be posted, making incredible times for the fans.”
Sitting in and uncharacteristically low 8th points position, three time world champion Antron Brown is looking to regain the consistency that led him and his Matco Tools dragster to those world titles. “It’s going to be crazy fast running at the beginning of June compared to mid-July. Track conditions should be in the 60s when we’re running at night and you can go out there and run hard. It’s another really good track and it’s going to be a lot of fun for the fans.”
In Funny Car, Ron Capps also finds himself lower in the points than he’d hoped, especially after leading the points going into this event a year ago. Capps too has had the performance to run up front but has lacked the consistency to go rounds. His NAPA Auto Parts sponsored Dodge Charger funny car was the car to beat this time last year, although an early exit ended his weekend at Joliet prematurely in 2017. “We have sort of been in experimentation mode the first third of the season with our NAPA race car. My crew chief, Rahn Tobler, and our NAPA AutoCare team decided to go back to what we ended the 2017 season with and instantly it showed us that it was a great move,” said Capps. “I’m really pumped about these races coming up, starting with the Route 66 NHRA Nationals and throughout the summer.”
Jonnie Lindberg and the Head Racing team found a spark at Topeka, going into race day from a career-high #2 qualifying position and racing to the quarterfinals, where tiresmoke ended their day. They return to action this weekend looking to continue the positive upswing as it seems they are finally getting a handle on their new chassis. With a solid forecast predicted for the weekend, look for Jonnie and Company to throw it down and gun for some big numbers in qualifying and hopefully some consistency come Sunday.
In Pro Stock, Alex Laughlin is flying new colors this weekend as Technet has come on board, putting Laughlin behind the wheel of a patriotic red, white and blue scheme. Laughlin battled gremlins at the race in Topeka, but is confident his Elite crew has tracked down the culprit and will have his Camaro ready to compete at Route 66. For those who follow Alex’s social media, he will be taking over Technet’s Instagram page for the weekend, so head over and follow them to keep up with the action from Laughlin’s own iPhone all weekend long.
As always, Fox Sports will be bring the action straight into your home on FS1 starting with qualifying results tomorrow at 7pm eastern, then another qualifying update on Sunday morning at 10:30, followed by live eliminations at 5:30pm. If you want to watch the action live all weekend, you can always join the NHRA’s All Access for the weekend or for the rest of the season. It’s a great way to keep up with everything as it happens on track all weekend in real time!