GEICO Powersports Drag Racers Look To Atlanta - 5/2/2010
Rob Geiger - Geiger Media

ST. LOUIS (May 2) -- GEICO Powersports teammates Morgan Lucas and Karen Stoffer exited Gateway International Raceway sooner than they were hoping Sunday, with Lucas recording a quarterfinal finish and Stoffer a Round 1 loss.

Lucas beat part-timer Troy Buff in Round 1 before falling to point leader Larry Dixon in the second session.

"We feel like if we were in the right lane we would have been a little better," Lucas said of his race against Dixon. "It's a one-lane racetrack right now. Larry has a great race team. One of these days we want to get the upper hand on him again like we did last year.

"We're happily accomplishing the goals we're setting for ourselves on the racetrack. We're learning something every time we start up the car. I'm pleased with our progress right now, even though we did fall back a spot in the points."

The sport's youngest nitro professional at 26 years old, Lucas says the GEICO Powersports/Lucas Oil dragster crew will now gear up for its first title defense May 14-16 at Atlanta Dragway.

"Hopefully we're going to learn a lot in the next week and a half when we're at home," Lucas said. "Jimmy (Walsh, crew chief) is going to be plugging away on the dynos and the other things we've got. The guys are going to do everything they can to make the car the best it can be. As long as we keep the car going down the racetrack, going rounds, and keeping it from hurting itself, we'll keep progressing the way we want to.

"It'll be different going into Atlanta since it's the first time I'll be a defending champion. Every race is different and the weather is going to dictate how that track is going to be. We had the weather on our side there last year."

After an encouraging two days of qualifying on her GEICO Powersports Suzuki, Stoffer was upset with herself after losing on a red-light foul start in the opening round of eliminations.

"I'm at a loss for words right now," she said. "We've got everything a great team should have. For some reason we can't get that bike down the racetrack as a team. It's frustrating. We're not giving up, but soon we're going to come to a point where we'll have to do something drastic to turn his around.

"We're going to stay here and test so we can somehow get me and the bike and the team all gelling again and get us going down the track straight and fast again. We have a benchmark; we know we can do it.

"The most painful part of this loss was it came on a red light, because I haven't been near a red light all year. I know the bike did something funky, but you can't blame everything on the bike or everything on the rider."

Stoffer went on to extend special thanks to all of the 2010 sponsors and supporters.
Geico Powersports 1-800-442-9253, Speed Dawg, Bates Leathers, Suzuki Extended Protection, KYMCOUSA, NGK, Airtech, Red Line Oil, American Racing Products, Mechanix Wear Gloves, and TKO Graphics.