Allen Horcher Photo)
Tulsa, OK | December 26, 2017 – Retaining his partnership with David Zarski of Zarski Motorsports, James Morris will be back behind the wheel of the Hyper Racing No. 181 in three classes at this week’s 33rd annual Lucas Oil Tulsa Shootout. A multi-year deal between Zarki from Olive Branch, Mississippi and Morris from Riegelsville, Pennsylvania, the relationship almost appeared out of thin air, but has since come to fruition and turned the duo into true ‘dark horses’ at the biggest events of the year. Along with the High Banks Hustle and Terry Sprague Memorial at Southern Illinois Raceway, the Tulsa Shootout will be the third leg of their adventures in 2017. Competing in three classes, Morris and Zarski should be legitimate contenders in Winged Outlaw, Outlaw Non-Wing and Stock Non-Wing.
“First and foremost, the goal is making the feature in all three classes on Sunday night,” noted Morris. “After that, it is all about the Driller though. Win it or wear it attitude.”
With three appearances at the Tulsa Shootout in his rear view mirror, Morris has claimed four feature starts and three top-ten finishes in his time on the Tulsa Expo Raceway. In 2015 and 2016, Morris earned back-to-back sixth-place runs in the daunting Outlaw Non-Wing division. Scoring two features starts at last year’s 32nd annual event, the PA native finished eighth in Stock Non-Wing and had a solid Winged Outlaw bid forming until a DNF halted him to an 18th-place result.
Agreeing to a partnership at the biggest races of the year, Morris and Zarski have already worked together and claimed multiple feature starts and top-ten finishes at races such as the $10,000/Win High Banks Hustle and $5,000/Win Terry Sprague Memorial in Illinois. An odd pairing for a Mississippi man and Pennsylvania native, the duo have still found a spark together and developed a strong connection.
“David and I connected at the Shootout and the Outlaw Nationals at Port City in 2013-14,” said Morris. “I was losing some sponsors at the time and he offered me a deal to come run these big races for him, and I couldn’t refuse. He has decent equipment with geniuses behind the wrenches that make his mid-dollar team look like the equipment of a high-profile one. Along with that, David and I really connect. We have the same goals, we have nothing left to prove at our respective homes and now we have a point to prove that we do belong on the ‘national’ level. I feel like we really have a shot to pull off an upset. We can feel it, we have been close before.”
Beginning on Thursday, December 28th with practice and heat races, the 33rd edition of the Lucas Oil Tulsa Shootout will run through Sunday, December 31st when a new batch of Golden Driller winners are crowned. Walkapedia will continue our Tulsa Shootout coverage all week long with countless previews leading up to the race as we highlight this year’s contenders.