Toyota Nationals & Lucas Oil Regionals
October 27th-October 29th & November 2nd-November 5th, 2017
Las Vegas, NV
For two back-to-back weekends in Las Vegas, Team Litton Racing combined its efforts with Randy Meyer Racing to leave their mark on both the NHRA Toyota Nationals and Lucas Oil Regionals. Going into the Toyota Nationals, Team Litton knew there was plenty at stake being the next-to-last event of the Mello Yello Drag Racing Series. Every run was important, and a slip could be worse than snake eyes at the other Strip’s craps tables. With the Team pumped up and Randy Meyer horsepower ready, Driver Bill Litton, Crew Chief Randy Meyer, and Co-Crew Chief Dan Pomponio along with Co-Crew Chief Adrian Long, and team member Megan Meyer were all confident to roll the dice before a “sell out” crowd.
Friday’s Q1 brought the start that Team Litton was looking for with a solid 5.37 @ 273 mph. Driver Litton kept it hooked up and was straight down the groove with a good pass. Megan Meyer commented on the opening run of the event, “Bill did really great for the first session. There’s a lot of great cars here and it’s especially hard for the injected nitro cars to run in this altitude.” The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway has an altitude of 2,100 feet and factoring in the weather conditions resulted in an adjusted altitude of 3,991 feet. When at high adjusted altitude, there is lower air density and less oxygen proving difficult to maintain a high horse-powered engine like an injected nitro dragster!
Saturday morning, Driver Litton had a nice pass in Q2 but did not improve with a 5.42 @ 272.72 mph. Shortly thereafter, Q3 brought a good side-by-side drag race and Driver Litton and team were steady with a 5.37. Team Litton finished qualifying in the #12 spot. Per Litton, “This is a tough track for injected nitro cars with the high altitude and bad air, but Randy, Dan and Adrian will figure it out.” The crew was ready to assess and adjust in preparation for elimination rounds the following day.
Going into E1 on Sunday morning, the Litton Financial dragster was one of the first cars to go down the track. It was the first time Wolf and Litton had faced each other in eliminations. Driver Litton had a clean pass, but the car slowed slightly in the losing effort running a 5.42 @ 275.39 mph which was the top speed of the event. Megan summed up the weekend stating, “Overall, I think we had a great weekend. It was the first race back for Bill since Pomona in February at the Winternationals, and I believe we got a lot of really good data this weekend that we can transition into next weekend. We didn’t hurt any parts and we kind of have a heads up with where we need to go with the tune-up.”
For weekend 2 in Las Vegas, Team Litton prepared to take on the Lucas Oil Regionals. Q1 commenced on Friday with Driver Litton clocking in a very strong 5.32 @ 276.24 mph on the first roll. He slowed down only slightly in Q2 on Saturday, running a 5.35 @ 274.27 mph but it was still enough to keep him in the #3 spot. The real magic happened later that afternoon in Q3, where Driver Litton ran a 5.33 and the Randy Meyer horsepower really kicked into high-gear setting the all-time track record speed for the class at 279.15 mph!
Everyone was amped up going into E1 on Sunday. The crew had the car hopped up for a fierce competitor and former world champ, Duane Shields. Litton made a slight change in the staging process. Shortly after the launch, the car went into tire shake. Litton pedaled the car to gain traction, but Shields was on a good run and never trailed for the win. Litton ran a 5.53 @ 276.35 mph to close out the weekend. He reflected, “The team did a great job. I changed up my driver routine a little and heated up the clutch during the staging process which resulted in tire shake. There are a lot of things that can go wrong in the pressure cooker…Very disappointing, but I learned from it and hope to improve in Pomona!”
The team celebrated on the high of the weekend breaking the track record speed, and looked to the future ready to take on the World Finals in Pomona with qualifying round 1 on November 9th! For insider updates and exclusive videos and photos, make sure to follow our Litton Racing page on Twitter and Facebook, like us on Instagram @teamlittonracing, and visit our website www.littonracing.com