Click here to visit the Motorsports page for all the latest news and information.
CHICAGO -- It has been almost a year since Daniel Wilkerson, driver of the Levi, Ray & Shoup/Dump-Lok Ford Shelby Mustang Funny Car has raced in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series. Wilkerson will be back in the driver’s seat this weekend in Joliet, approximately 160 miles north of his hometown of Springfield, IL. The last time Wilkerson was in a Funny Car he out-qualified his dad and team owner, Tim Wilkerson. This weekend the younger Wilkerson looks to do the same and have some fun racing with his dad.
Q. WHAT HAVE YOU BEEN UP TO SINCE YOU WERE LAST IN THE CAR?
A. I’ve been going to school and should have my bachelors degree in accounting finished by next spring. I also bought a house. So I’ve been working on the house, working hard in school and working in Dad’s race shop.
Q. YOU’RE MAKING YOUR 2010 DEBUT THIS WEEKEND IN CHICAGO. WHAT IS YOUR GOAL THIS WEEKEND?
A. My goal this weekend is just basically make clean runs every time. I’m not necessarily worried about winning or losing. I mostly want to keep my stuff in one pile without wrecking or ruining anything and I want to go out there and have fun.
Q. WHAT’S IT LIKE RACING WITH YOUR DAD?
A. It’s super exciting. I never actually thought we would get to race together. It’s just really fun. Anytime I get to do anything with my dad it’s just a lot of fun. And I mean anything it could be riding bicycles, but when you get to do something like what we’re doing this weekend and at that caliber of sport that we’re in, it’s just really exciting. I’ve been looking forward to this weekend for a while.
Q. HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT DRIVING THE MUSTANG FUNNY CAR?
A. Well, you see Mustangs on the street all of the time and see how fast they run and you think ‘Hey that’s a really cool car,’ and now I get to drive one at 300 miles per hour. From a driver’s standpoint, what’s unique about driving the Mustang Funny Car is that it is actually a lot easier to see out of than the car that I drove previously. There’s also a performance advantage as well. This Mustang Funny Car is a little more aerodynamic than the cars I drove before. When you get more speed in there that never hurts.
Q. WHAT IS UNIQUE ABOUT THE TRACK THIS WEEKEND?
A. Well it’s one of the nicest facilities on the tour. It’s also a track where I earned my Funny Car license. It’s a great racing surface and it’s pretty close to my home, so it’s a hometown track. A lot of people are coming from Springfield to watch the race. It makes it that much more exciting for me.
Q. WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR THE REST OF THE SEASON?
A. I’m trying to work on a deal for Indianapolis. As of right now I have this race booked and a couple of match races. It’s great getting back out on the race track though. After working hard at school it’s always great to go back out on the track and have some fun.