BRISTOL, Tenn. — After back-to-back victories in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, Spencer Massey suffered a first-round loss at the most recent event in Englishtown.
But to hear the ever-optimistic Top Fuel standout talk, he may be as thrilled to get back in his 10,000-horsepower Battery Extender by Schumacher Electric dragster as he has been at any point in 2014.
“I’m definitely excited to get back out there because I feel like we have our race car back,” Massey said. “The car is moving in the right direction. We need to be running strong and need to be consistently in the 3.70s, and after Englishtown I feel like we have a car and motor that can make that power. Hopefully we can go back to the final round in Bristol and maybe even win it this year.”
Massey and the rest of the NHRA stars return to action June 13-15 for the 14th annual Ford NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals at Bristol Dragway. Steve Torrence (Top Fuel), who beat Massey in the final round, John Force (Funny Car) and Rodger Brogdon (Pro Stock) were last year’s winners of the event.
It is the 10th of 24 events during the 2014 NHRA season and Massey, currently fourth in points, seems intent to make a major statement during the busy summer stretch.
He won two straight races in Atlanta and Topeka, but didn’t dominate at either, qualifying 12th in Topeka. But Massey and his team, led by crew chiefs Phil Shuler and Todd Okuhara, were encouraged after Englishtown, despite a first-round loss to Brittany Force. It was the team’s first first-round loss in 2014, an impressive nod to the team’s early-season consistency, but Massey saw the signs that his car is ready to take the next step in performance.
It couldn’t come at a better time, either, as the Ford NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals kick off a stretch of four straight race weekends and seven races in eight weeks.