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Morgan has high hopes for his Lucas Oil/MAVTV Mustang team


PHOENIX (Feb. 19) - Lucas Oil/MAVTV Pro Stock driver Larry Morgan is an eternal optimist, truly believing that tomorrow will be better than today, and because of that attitude he is ready for the Carquest Auto Parts NHRA Nationals this weekend at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park.

"We want to win as many rounds as we can and try to win the championship," Morgan said. "That's our goal. If that's not the goal every week, why even come?"

The veteran from Newark, Ohio, has reason for optimism after taking out 2012 Pro Stock champion Allen Johnson in the first round in Pomona, Calif., to start the season. His small, family-owned team may not be as big as some of the top Pro Stock organizations, but working as a unit can be a plus.

"I'm pretty optimistic about getting the car right," Morgan said. "We'll be all right; we're excited. We've got to get the car working better and get everybody acclimated and working together. We'll be fine."

Morgan returns essentially with the same team as last year, and he doesn't believe in labels for his crewmembers. It's truly a team effort in the Larry Morgan Racing pit area, with each person jumping in to do whatever work is necessary.

"It takes everybody to do it," Morgan said. "I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for everybody. We've got a couple of guys in the shop we're real happy with, too. We're working on our motorcycle stuff and this engine stuff. That's all we can do."

And at the top of the team are Forrest and Charlotte Lucas.

"They're family," Morgan said. "They're like parents to us. The deal with racing a car with their name on it, it's an honor. There are not better people out here than Forrest and Charlotte. My hat's off to them for helping all of motorsports, not just drag racing.

"It's an honor to race with their name on my car. I truly feel that way. They are good family people, and I can't say enough good things about them."

Qualifying sessions at the Carquest Auto Parts NHRA Nationals will be held at 2 and 4:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Eliminations kick off at 11 a.m., Sunday. ESPN2 will air qualifying and elimination action.