Famoso Auto Club Raceway
November 21 – 22, 2015
With the 2015 season in the rear view mirror, Team Litton Racing and Driver Bill Litton had their eyes set on Famoso Auto Club Raceway in Bakersfield, California, for the next chapter in the journey. The occasion, for Driver Litton to learn how to tame the fastest fire breathing monsters of them all, the Top Fuel Funny Car and the Top Fuel Dragster. Litton was once asked by a member of Team Litton, “Why Top Fuel?” Litton replied, “God wired me for driving nitro cars and that passionate desire for acceleration and speed drives me toward the ultimate goal of Top Fuel. There are no faster accelerating cars on the planet!”
Driver Litton’s journey took an unexpected turn when he found out that not only would he be fulfilling a lifelong dream of licensing in Top Fuel Dragster and Top Fuel Funny Car, but that his instructor would be the 2015 NHRA Top Fuel Funny Car Champion of the World, Del Worsham. “When I first started working things out with Del to attempt Top Fuel licensing, he was struggling in the points chase. Then as the countdown got underway, he consistently closed in on the World Championship. Del is bad to the bone and I am honored to have him as an instructor.” Del Worsham commented, “When Bill said he wanted to come to me and drive a Top Fuel car and get a license, I started watching Bill race from that point forward. I watched him at the Toyota Nationals in Dallas, TX and I watched him win the race and I knew right away that the guy was definitely a driver.”
In order to be licensed in Top Fuel Dragster and Top Fuel Funny Car classes a driver must complete one “moderate” (half-track) and two “full pulls” (full track) in each class. Team Litton and Del Worsham Racing were well aware of the colossal challenge ahead of them to accomplish both in one weekend.
The team pulled up Saturday morning for their first Top Fuel run of the weekend. Driver Litton reflected on his emotions as he pulled up for his first-ever Top Fuel run, “Sitting in the car before it started felt very similar to the injected nitro car I have been driving. I kept telling myself it was just another day at the office, to try to keep from overthinking things.” Litton went on to satisfactorily execute his first “moderate” run. Del Worsham stated, “Went out for his first run, did everything we said. Drove it as far as we said. Looked like a pro.”
Saturday afternoon was Team Litton’s first chance at a “full pull.” Driver Litton was excited to see what this new experience would bring with over 10,000 horsepower launching him. The beast rocketed down the track and clocked 279 mph in 1,000 feet.
The Team came back Sunday morning hoping Driver Litton would be able to complete his Top Fuel Dragster license with one more “full pull.” The fire breathing monster lined up and this time grabbed the track and didn’t let go blasting down the track covering 3 and 1/3 football fields in 4.17 seconds from a standing start, topping out at 308 mph! Driver Litton reflected on the intensity, “It is amazing how effortlessly this car does the burnout and then how consistently it maintains the acceleration!”
The team now had to shift their focus from their Top Fuel Dragster success to the Top Fuel Funny Car licensing ahead of them. The team would have the rest of Sunday to complete one “moderate” and two “full pulls” for the second license to be granted. This would require three near perfect performances by machine and driver. Unfortunately, although the crew worked tirelessly, the car’s fuel system wouldn’t cooperate and time ran out after launching the Funny Car twice. Hopefully, completion for Litton of the Top Fuel Funny Car license will come in the next team effort.
Del Worsham reflected on the weekend, “Bill is now a licensed Top Fuel driver. He did a great job. I would have no problem in the Top Fuel class racing Bill. He looked like a natural, looked like a pro. Whoever has taught him to this point has done a great job. He’s a very focused individual, he’s detail oriented and a very good listener. Great job, Bill!”
As we move into the 2016 season the journey of Driver Bill Litton and Team Litton Racing continues, with prospects for a year of excitement, surprises, and cheers on the horizon. With Top Fuel Dragster license in hand, Driver Bill Litton’s childhood prayers continue to become more of a reality. The opportunity to drive with the fastest men and women on land, in the entire world, is now within his reach. Thank you for following Team Litton this season. We hope to see you at the track real soon! Merry Christmas!