Scott Palmer Racing
GAINESVILLE, FL – Rickey House used a remarkable career-best elapsed time of 6.205 seconds to record a huge upset win over series leader Doug Vancil in the opening round of the Mickey Thompson Tires NHRA Top Fuel Harley Drag Racing Series Sunday at the 50th anniversary Amalie Oil Gatornationals.
Racing against the higher-qualified bike of Vancil, House’s 6.205 at 225.26 mph lopped a huge chunk off his qualifying effort of 6.378 at 222 mph and propelled him to an end-to-end victory over Vancil’s 6.230 at 235.43 mph. House was even sharp at the Christmas Tree, leaving with a .015-second reaction time to Vancil’s .041-second launch.
“We’d struggled all weekend in qualifying with parts breaking and what-not so to pull off a career-best pass in Round 1 against the guy everyone is chasing in the points was really satisfying,” said House, who hails from the Houston suburb of Humble, Texas. “I pretty much knew Doug was going to be quick so I tuned the bike up for a big run and it held. Having a good light there was kind of icing on the cake.”
GAINESVILLE, FL – For the third consecutive race, Scott Palmer and his Magic Dry Organic Absorbent Top Fuel team have secured the No. 8 position in the elimination field, this time at the 50th anniversary Amalie Oil Gatornationals at historic Gainesville Raceway.
Taking advantage of Saturday’s cooler temperatures, Palmer peeled off a steady 3.750-second pass at 326.56 mph in the third qualifying session to earn his spot. His best from Friday, when it was much hotter and more humid, was a 3.812 at 319.90 mph.
“The good thing was this Magic Dry car went down the track in both conditions, hot yesterday and cooler today,” Palmer said. “We tried to improve in Q4 but broke a clutch lever, which I’m going to look at as some early race day luck maybe because if it didn’t happen there it probably would have been in E1.
GAINESVILLE, FL – The relationship between Top Fuel driver Scott Palmer and sponsor Tommy Thompson is definitely different than most. Palmer and Thompson are friends, first and foremost, and they’re also partners in a winning drag boat team. The fact they are able to promote two of Thompson’s businesses — Magic Dry Organic Absorbent and CatSpot Organic Litter — is merely a bonus.
“My deal with Tommy is so much more than business,” Palmer said. “It’s a personal friendship between me and him. We just happen to love the same things and we have figured out a way to use our passions to promote his companies, which is great, but we’re very close whether we’re racing or not.”
With two open weekends between the NHRA’s last stop in Phoenix and the upcoming 50th anniversary Amalie Oil Gatornationals at Gainesville Raceway, Palmer decided to forego his usual diversion to his race shop in Missouri and work out of Thompson’s facility in Locust Grove, Okla., instead. There was a very specific reason why Palmer made this stop.
Teammate Rickey House keeping pace in Top Fuel Harley
CHANDLER, AZ – With Friday’s action at the 35th annual Magic Dry Organic Absorbent NHRA Arizona Nationals effectively erased by cold temperatures, Scott Palmer knew he needed a steady Saturday to stay in contention for the trophy at his title sponsor’s main event. After safely qualifying in the top half of the field in the final session, he was able to breathe a little easier.
“To see Magic Dry Organic Absorbent logos everywhere you look is so cool,” Palmer said. “To be up there on the starting line about to make a run and you see (Magic Dry owner) Tommy Thompson give you a thumbs-up, man that’s motivating for me.
“We have a ton of support here, especially all of me and Tommy’s drag boat racing friends and fellow racers, and it just makes you want to show off and let them see how we do it over here on asphalt. It’s just been such a fun weekend already. Now it’s time to turn on some win lights.”
Playing it a shade to the conservative side, Palmer made a safe run of 3.781 seconds at 325.22 mph in the final session to lockdown the No. 8 position on the ladder. He’ll open race day with lane choice against Mike Salinas, who posted a best of 3.862 at 274.55 mph.
CHANDLER, AZ – Scott Palmer loves driving his Magic Dry Organic Absorbent Top Fuel Dragster more than anything but admits that even if he didn’t have a ride, it would be a mistake to miss this weekend’s 35th annual Magic Dry Organic Absorbent NHRA Arizona Nationals.
“With the cooler conditions setting up the way they are going to be this weekend, everybody is going to be super-fast,” Palmer said. “If we are lucky it’s going to be a high of maybe 60 degrees so it’s going to make for a very stout and tight racetrack. There will be a lot of career-bests set this weekend, for sure.
“It’ll be one of those deals where the track is going to take anything you throw at it. Racing will be crazy because if what you throw at it sticks, anybody can beat anyone else. It’s tough enough as it is, but these cooler conditions are going to make it even tougher. I’ll tell you, if I wasn’t racing myself I’d be buying a ticket for this one.”
POMONA, CA – After posting multiple career-best numbers in qualifying, Scott Palmer and his upstart Magic Dry Organic Absorbent Top Fuel team tried to go even quicker in Sunday’s opening round of the 59th annual Lucas Oil Winternationals. But alas, they were a little too aggressive, smoking the tires of their 11,000-horsepower rail as soon as Palmer stepped on the gas.
“Like I said before the season started, we’re done racing by hoping the other guy makes a mistake so we can win the round,” Palmer said. “We’re racing to win straight up. We may make a few mistakes but we are going to try to win rounds instead of hoping the other team we’re racing messes up.”
Today, Palmer was facing veteran Doug Kalitta, who had qualified one spot ahead of him on the ladder. Being friends with several members of Kalitta’s team, Palmer knew what to expect and knew what he needed to do to have a chance at winning.
POMONA, CA – The winter break from drag racing has given Top Fuel pro Scott Palmer plenty of time to reflect on last year and make plans for the future. The always popular, blue-collar driver from Missouri reached a couple of conclusions during the down time, and he has big plans to change the way he’s been racing.
“It’s time to get aggressive,” Palmer said. “Last year we learned how to run low 3.7s but then we got a little conservative and tried to protect our position in the points. The deal is, you really can’t do that and expect big things. You have to run 3.7s to win races and that requires swinging for the fences at the right moments in qualifying and all day long on race day. I’ve decided we’re going to live out on that ragged edge a lot more this year.
“If there was one thing I wish we’d done better last year it would have been to qualify higher on the ladder every race. There are just all kinds of benefits to being in the top half of the field and we weren’t there enough. No more being conservative and trying to hold a spot in the points. We want to pour it all on and see how we do.”
Palmer has plenty of weapons at his disposal, most notably the continued backing of drag boat racer and renowned entrepreneur Tommy Thompson. This will be the third season one of Thompson’s many entities will ride along as title sponsor of Palmer’s 10,000-horsepower machine.