With the start of the O'Reilly Auto Parts Route 66 NHRA Nationals this weekend, no detail will be too small for the GEICO/Lucas Oil Top Fuel dragster team.
"We've been running really strong so far this year and it's definitely something to build on," Lucas said. "You hate to stub your toe here and there, but it's going to happen; it's a part of drag racing. There's no reason to think we can’t start a new hot streak in Chicago."
With two wins and four No. 1 qualifiers, Lucas and the GEICO team have a solid foundation to build from for the next stretch of races.
"There's no question we want to continue with the way we were running earlier this season," Lucas said. "This is the best car and the best team I've ever worked with and it's just a matter of time before we zero in on our hot weather tune-up."
Last time out in Bristol, the team could not adapt to wildly variable track conditions and did not qualify for the race. It was a harsh lesson learned for crew chief Aaron Brooks and the rest of the team.
"We just got behind the track conditions there," Brooks said. "We can't really change our game plan too much because we've been running well all year. We just need to keep an eye on the track conditions a little better."
Chicago presents its own sets of challenges for Brooks. There will be two qualifying sessions at Route 66 Raceway under the lights instead of the customary singe session on Friday night.
"Depending on the weather, you can make a lot of power there," Brooks said. "There have been national records set at this track in the past. There's nothing you can do other than keep an eye on the forecast and to have a few plans ready to tackle those varying conditions."