As the 2013 season dwindled down, Duane La Fleur Rolled into the Brainerd Int'l Raceway in Brainerd, Minnesota on a mission. There were only two more events scheduled beyond the 32nd Annual Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals. If all went as hoped for, success at this event would carry over to La Fleur's next venue. There was obviously power in confidence, and he welcomed every edge possible to make a victory come easier.
Duane La Fleur experienced his share of success throughout 2013 and is already preparing for the upcoming season
Having come off of two impressive performances at Denver and Sonoma, La Fleur carried confidence with him into this event as well. He was on a roll, and dominated rounds throughout the bulk of the event. Lining up to race in the semi finals on the final day, Duane La Fleur was eager for the tree to glow green.
But in spite of his stellar performance thus far, La Fleur red lighted off of the line. It was a crucial mistake, costing him the victory. "I felt that if I had made it to the finals, I had a good shot at the win."
Duane La Fleur's next stop was at Bowling Green, Kentucky, where he was scheduled to run in a Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series Event. La Fleur and his Camaro Roadster appeared to be as one and unstoppable.
La Fleur weeded through his competitors to the semifinals in round five. Again though, La Fleur's quest to the most coveted final race was detoured when he tapped the brakes coming to the strip. It was a slight miscalculation, but a miscalculation none-the-less that would cost him a victory, by approximately 10 inches.
Duane Fleur drove his way to the semifinals in two of his last three races of the season
However, La Fleur had nothing to hang his head about, as he had managed to reach the semi finals during his past two events. Going into the last race of the season, he followed the Mello Yello Drag Racing Series to Indianapolis, Indiana, to compete in the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, at the Lucas Oil Raceway.
As race-time neared, one would suspect that anticipation ran high for La Fleur, as he hoped his success from the previous two events would bleed into the final event of the season. However, luck had other ideas. In fact, Duane La Fleur was eliminated from the Super Gas division in a first-round battle.
Even though his run at Indianapolis didn't go as hoped for, La Fleur was satisfied with his overall success, and rightfully so. With this season behind him, he is already looking forward to the opening race of 2014.
That in mind, La Fleur will be getting his Camaro fine-tuned and ready to roll. But he is mindful that a man and his car are but a small element of triumph. "My team is the most important thing to make us successful," ensured Duane La Fleur. My dad maintains the race car, mom is the team leader at the track and my wife is a huge supporter. It is much more than a team; it's a family."
Duane La Fleur and his team are also strong advocates of proper maintenance. "Maintenance is huge," he ensured. "If you don't take the time after each race to go through everything, it will come back and bite you at the most inopportune time.
"K&N makes the best filters on the market today, by far," he continued in reference to proper maintenance. " We've used the K&N air scoop filter since the day we had this car built, which is going on eight years. The motor looks as clean inside as the day we assembled it. We've run K&N oil filters on all of our motors , and they hold up under every condition we've thrown at them. We even use K&N oil and air filters on the tractor that pulls our trailer across the country.
"We run K&N exclusively on all of our equipment and have never had any issues," he continued. "K&N is definitely the best product for our team..."
Looking forward to the upcoming season, Duane La Fleur concluded, "We plan on improving in 2014, and we are starting to work on it now. We have started pulling things apart and will freshen up all of our spare transmissions and converters. We will go through the motor to ensure we have ample power to be competitive on the track. And we'll pull normal maintenance on the truck and trailer. We should be finished and ready to hit the road in March of 2014."