NHRA Top Fuel star Richie Crampton will drive Alex Laughlin’s Gas Monkey Energy Drink A/Fuel Dragster at this weekend’s Division Three Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series event in Chicago.
It is the second time Crampton has driven the Anthony Dicero Racing/Nitro University car this year, having filled in for Laughlin at the rained-out divisional race at Lucas Oil Raceway in Brownsburg in April.
Then the former U.S. Nationals Top Fuel Champion qualified second for the eight car field with a 5.38 second, 258 mph run before rain ended the event early.
“It feels like I’m going full circle with Anthony and I’m really excited about racing with the Gas Monkey Energy Drink team again,” Crampton said.
“Anthony gave me the chance to drive his car in July 2013, and that led to Morgan Lucas giving me the opportunity to license in his Top Fuel car just a few months later.
“I’m really thankful to Anthony, and also to Alex for giving me another opportunity in their car.
“The A/Fuel cars are great fun to drive, and it’s pretty cool representing such an exciting brand as Gas Monkey Energy Drink.”
A seven-time NHRA Top Fuel winner in just three seasons on the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series tour, Crampton was left without a top-level drive this year after Morgan Lucas Racing shut its competition operations at the end of last season.
He has remained working within the Lucas organisation building racing car chassis in the Lucas Oil Fabrication shop.
Crampton recently returned from a short trip to his native Australia where he drove his 2016 MLR Top Fuel car for its new owners, Lamattina Racing, at Sydney Dragway’s Nitro Thunder event.
He earned a runner-up finish for the team, setting low elapsed time of the event at 4.53 seconds (quarter-mile).
Crampton is hoping to return to the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series in a competitive ride in 2018.