Lucas and Stoffer Just Get GEICO Powersports Rides Into Chicago Show - 6/5/2010
Rob Geiger - Geiger Media

CHICAGO (June 5) -- Top Fuel driver Morgan Lucas and Pro Stock Motorcycle rider Karen Stoffer both earned the No. 15 starting spots in their respective fields at this weekend's 13th annual United Association Route 66 NHRA Nationals.

Despite several rain showers, NHRA officials managed to get three of four qualifying sessions in the books although GEICO Powersports pros Lucas and Stoffer had trouble finding the right combination for the freshly-washed racing surface. Nevertheless, they'll have a chance to run for the trophy Sunday if the wet stuff stays away.

"We're struggling to find out what the car wants right now," said Lucas, who topped out at 3.968 at 297.94 mph. "We're stuck in a bad position again after qualifying and I guess the only good news is we won't be the first or second pair out. We need to get this GEICO car figured out."

As the 15th qualifier, Lucas will line his GEICO Powersports/Lucas Oil dragster up against Cory McClenathan in Sunday's opening round, scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. CDT. McClenathan had a best pass of 3.822 at 320.05 mph.

Stoffer's run of record showed a 7.111 at 182.55 mph on the scoreboard. She'll most likely need to find a quicker path down the quarter mile on her GEICO Powersports Suzuki if she hopes to beat Round 1 opponent Hector Arana, the current points leader and reigning series champion, who went 6.948 at 192.30 mph on his Lucas Oil Buell.

"It's not what we wanted and we'll probably be in that (right) lane tomorrow, and we've still not gotten down through there," Stoffer said. "We're going to have to figure out how to get down this racetrack tomorrow. We'll work on it and change things up tonight.

"The bike leans a little bit and we can't control it. We have to work on that. I'm not sure if the added torque (from a larger mandated engine) is hurting or helping."

ESPN2 will carry the event in primetime Sunday evening.

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.