The Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals at Brainerd International Raceway was a tough outing for Funny Car team owner and driver Chris King and his Howards Cams/Competition Parts Dodge Funny Car team. During the two days of qualifying the team severely damaged a motor battling to make the 16-car field. The team had plans to race in the 69th Dodge Power Brokers U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park this weekend but the start-up team ran out of time to get their equipment in race ready shape for the biggest drag race of the season. King will be attending the race and fulfilling his sponsor and fan event obligations but will not be racing.
“It is just so disappointing to not be able to race at the U.S. Nationals,” said King, who qualified No. 14 earlier this season at the Mile-High Nationals. “We were making strides on the performance side at Denver and Topeka, but Brainerd really set us back. My whole goal this year, which I didn’t talk about too much, was to get our program competitive so we could maybe make an impact at Indy and get the attention of more sponsors. That isn’t going to happen on the track, so I am going to go and do all the fan events I committed to and make the most of a bad situation.”
King will be one of many drivers attending the Cruz Pedregon Open House and Car Show (462 Southpoint Circle, Brownsburg, IN) on Thursday, August 30 at 7 p.m. ET for a free driver and celebrity autograph session. The event starts at 5:30 p.m. and drivers will start signing at 7:00 p.m. On Friday King will also be signing at the DSR Performance Block Party (1681 E. Northfield Drive, Brownsburg, IN) benefiting Riley Children’s Hospital at noon ET. The Funny Car driver and team owner has several other private events on his schedule and will be at the race as well.
“I made some commitments to meet with the fans and I definitely want to honor those promises,” said King. “You always want to be racing but Indy is a huge event for the fans and the sport so if I can still be a part of it, I don’t want to miss that chance. I am evaluating what my team’s next move is. Right now the focus is getting all the pieces in place to continue to chase this dream. I am not going to give up.”
King raced three races in 2021 and took 2022 off to build his program and look for a road map to success on the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series. This season the fireman and professional driver has competed in four NHRA national events including Chicago and Denver, Topeka (KS), and Brainerd. The goal all season was to qualify and build up data for an enhanced schedule in 2024.