Chicago race has extra meaning for 'Hot Rod' Fuller

There are places in one's life that hold special meaning. Whether it's where you graduated from high school, the place you took your first date, or saw your first drag race, each is significant in its own way.

To "Hot Rod" Fuller, Chicago is not only his birthplace but Route 66 Raceway is also where he won the tracks' inaugural race in 1998 when competing in the Super Comp ranks and finished in the runner-up position in his first Top Fuel event in 2005. So to the pilot of the Valvoline/David Powers Motorsports Top Fuel dragster, racing in the Chicago suburb of Joliet is extra special.

"I have aunts, uncles, and a bunch of cousins that follow our sport each weekend," Fuller said. "Since my dad won the Super Comp race two weeks ago in Topeka, I'm expecting a renewed interest from my mom's side of the family here in Chicago this weekend. We'll also have special guests from Valvoline and LP Building Products visiting and we want each of them to experience a winner's circle celebration."

Fuller remains sixth in the POWERade point battle heading in to this weekend's ninth running of the CARQUEST Auto Parts NHRA Nationals.

"Despite having the top speed in qualifying we missed advancing in the Topeka race by .017-seconds," crew chief Lee Beard said. "That's tough to take. But this is a new day and another race and with a little bit of that 'Hot Rod' luck, we'll be hosting a huge party in the winner's circle Sunday afternoon."

*NOTE: For more NHRA news and current NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series driver standings, be sure to check out .

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