BAYTOWN, Texas – Antron Brown had beaten Morgan Lucas the last 11 times they met in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series, but it was a loss of traction by Brown that prevented him from making it an even dozen in the championship round of the NHRA Spring Nationals at Royal Purple Raceway near Houston.
Although Brown and his Matco Tools Top Fuel dragster fell to 1-4 in championship rounds year, the team led by crew chiefs Mark Oswald and Brian Corradi took over the series points lead for the third time this season.
The Matco Tools dragster got about 100 feet from the starting line when it began to smoke the tires. From there, Brown could only coast to the finish line and watch Lucas win for the second time this year.
While Lucas was the No. 1 qualifier, he also started the race with a 1-12 record against Brown. That last time Brown lost to Lucas was 2008. Brown’s rookie season in Top Fuel.
“When you get to the final round, you just want to bring it home,” said Brown, who qualified sixth and eliminated J.R. Todd, teammate Spencer Massey and Steve Torrence to advance to the championship round.
“This makes us even more hungry going into Atlanta next weekend, a track we’ve won at twice. The end result is that we gained some more points and that puts us in a better position for the Countdown (to the Championship). Our main focus is to still win races. We’ve been to a bunch of final rounds and we got one, but we want more.
“The thing about it is, I’m real proud of this Matco Tools team. They performed great all weekend, especially after Friday qualifying where we had a couple gremlins sneak up and bite us.”
The next Full Throttle event is the May 4-6 NHRA Southern Nationals at Atlanta Dragway at Commerce, Ga. Brown is the defending winner of the Atlanta race.
The following are event results for Brown at the NHRA Spring Nationals:
EVENT WINNER: Morgan Lucas
Antron Brown, Matco Tools dragster
Qualified: No. 6
Rd.1: BROWN (3.803, 325.92) def. J.R. Todd (3.974, 238.72)
Rd 2: BROWN (3.838, 323.27) def. Spencer Massey (3.859, 323.12)
Semis: BROWN (4.011, 278.35) def. Steve Torrence (4.030, 276.80)
Final: Morgan Lucas (3.848, 320.81) def. BROWN (5.894, 117.05)