Performance Times: What's New On The Street & Strip

Ellis Takes the Pole, Arana Jr. Sets Track Speed Record

Posted by Justin Lorraine on Tue, Jun 09, 2015 @ 02:36 PM
By Matt Polito

Chip Ellis stunned the Pro Stock Motorcycle field at the NHRA Toyota Summernationals at Englishtown, NJ, coming out of nowhere to take the #1 qualifying position on the Pirana-Z S&S® powered Buell®.  And while Jerry Savoie took the event win on a Suzuki, Hector Arana Jr. set the track speed record on his Lucas Oil Buell.

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Three weeks ago Ellis wasn’t even planning on racing at Englishtown. He was called on by Pirana-Z team owner Junior Pippen to help out with Pippen’s new rider, Jeremy Teasley, at the Atlanta event.  When Teasley could not make Atlanta, Pippen asked the veteran Ellis if he wanted to ride the bike.

“I said ‘Heck, yeah, I want to ride!” said Ellis.

Ellis has a rich history in the sport. He earned championships in AMA Dragbike competition in Funnybike, 600 SuperSport and Formula Superbike when he was the Kawasaki factory rider. He also rode the prototype S&S Kosman Buell run by George Smith and George Bryce in 2004.  His last full-time ride in NHRA competition was on the Kuryakyn® Buell of Harry Lartigue in 2011.  The last time he competed was when he filled in for an injured Jerry Savoie in 2013.

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Pippen, once a star in the AHDRA, pulled out of full-time racing a few years ago to care for his wife Lisa, who is battling breast cancer.

The newly minted team of Pippen and Ellis qualified 15th at Atlanta and went out in the first round of eliminations but Pippen liked the chemistry and decided to have Ellis ride at the Englishtown event.

Englishtown didn’t start out well for them. They hurt their #1 motor during qualifying on Friday and had to put in the backup bullet for the first session on Saturday.  Ellis ripped a 6.801 at 197 mph to go to the top of the list.  A strong run for sure but most of the fast bikes still had two qualifying laps in front of them.

“I thought if we ran that fast someone would run even faster and gone past us,” said Ellis.  “There are too many good bikes out there.”

As it turned out all those good bikes couldn’t catch the pink Buell.  Savoie came close, running 6.084 at 197.13 mph to take the second spot. It was Ellis’ first number one qualifying performance since Memphis in 2009.

Hector Arana locked in the third spot at 6.815, setting a new Englishtown Raceway Park track speed record at 199.35 mph on the S&S powered Lucas Oil Buell.  He only held the track record for about two hours as his son, Hector Jr. re-set the record on his own S&S powered Buell at 199.37 mph in the final session.

Ellis went from basking in the glow of the #1 qualifier parade to a mad thrash on Sunday morning when the team went to warm up the motor prior to eliminations only to discover a scuffed piston.  They pieced together a working motor from the two broke units and just made the first round call where Ellis got by Angie Smith with a 6.87.  The party was over in round two when the bike refused to turn over in the burnout box.

Meanwhile all eyes were on the Arana’s as they looked to have a shot at cracking the 200 mph barrier. Sunday’s warm temperatures and slight headwind conspired against them and they were off the torrid pace from Saturday.   Both ran 197 mph when they faced each other in round two with Jr. taking the win.  A round later Hector Jr. redlit against the eventual winner, Savoie.

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Savoie tore it up in eliminations.  He became the first Suzuki® rider to run under 6.80 seconds and did it three times in a row, with a best of 6.785. His win over Jimmy Underdahl’s Suzuki was his second career win.

There is no question that the Suzuki’s are running hot this season and there is a thought that the NHRA’s new fuel mandate, switching from VP C-25 to Sunoco SR18 favors the inline four cylinder bikes. Four of the top eight qualifiers were Suzuki’s and it was the first all-Suzuki final in almost four years.

The next event on the NHRA Mello Yello Pro Stock Motorcycle tour is the Summit Racing Equipment Nationals in Norwalk, OH, July 2-5.

 

Tags: racing, NHRA

Hector Arana Ends Drought With Atlanta Win

Posted by Justin Lorraine on Tue, May 19, 2015 @ 12:16 PM
Story by Matt Polito

Back when Hector Arana won the NHRA event in Dallas en route to his first and only NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle Championship in 2009, no one would have guessed that it would take over five years before he won his next national event.

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After making the final round 11 times since his last win, Arana strode into the winners circle after riding his Lucas Oil S&S-powered Buell to a final round victory over the Harley-Davidson of Eddie Krawiec at the Summit Racing Southern Nationals at Atlanta Dragway.

“I never gave up, I kept going forward,” said Arana. “I know I struggled but I never gave up hope.”

After opening the season on a new EBR-bodied racebike, Arana quickly switched back to his trusty Buell when handling problems became apparent on the new machine.

In Atlanta he was solidly in the top half of the field throughout qualifying and ended up in the seventh spot at 6.909 seconds, 195.62 mph.

Leading the Southern Nationals field was Gainesville winner Karen Stoffer with a 6.875 at 195.59 mph on her Suzuki followed by the Suzuki of Jimmy Underdahl at 6.880/195.85. It was the first time Suzuki’s qualified 1-2 since the 2011 edition of the Southern Nationals.

Following the Suzuki’s were a pair of S&S-powered Buells with Hector Arana, Jr. taking the third spot at 6.89/196 on his Lucas Oil Buell and Angelle Sampey on her JoinTeamAngelle.com Buell qualifying fourth at 6.89/194.

Arana had a hard road during eliminations, first taking out defending series champion Andrew Hines on his H-D V-Rod and then number two qualifier, Underdahl, with a pair of identical 6.915s.

In the semifinals Arana met his son, Hector Jr. who schooled him on the tree, jumping out to a big holeshot, but struggled downtrack. The elder Arana took the win with a 6.93 to make is 21st final round.

The final looked like it would be over quickly has Krawiec got the holeshot as Arana launched toward the center line. Arana made a hard correction as Krawiec suffered mechanical problems and shut off. Arana kept the bike in the lane and took the win light with an off-pace run of 7.32 seconds.

“I felt the bike jump like a bronco out there so I pulled it to the right and I kept going,” said Arana of the final. “I am not giving up until he is way in front of me and I can’t keep up. You keep riding. As long as I had control of the motorcycle I’m staying in it.”

The win was his seventh career victory.

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“You don’t know what it means to be to be back in the winners circle,” he continued. “There were moments when I had doubts. I didn’t have the best bike and your confidence gets low. I knew I could keep winning, I just had to believe in myself.”

With the win, Arana moved up to third place in the Mello Yello championship points. Their rivalry with the Harley team is in full swing with Krawiec and Hines being 1 and 2 and father and son Arana at 3 and 4.

“The biggest rivalry out here is between the Harleys and the Arana’s,” said the elder Arana. “It’s awesome and I love it because it gives us fuel to keep on working.”

With the taste of victory, Arana is driven even harder to find that elusive horsepower.

“I want more,” he said. “I want to dominate and win all the races. That is when I will feel like I have enough power.”

The next event on the NHRA Mello Yello Pro Stock Motorcycle championship tour is the Toyota Summernationals at Englishtown, NJ, June 4-7.

Tags: racing, NHRA, land speed racer

Join The S&S Cycle Race Team

Posted by Performance Times on Mon, Apr 20, 2015 @ 04:04 PM

RaceTech_Ad

S&S Cycle is known for racing heritage as well as vast performance products from intakes and exhaust, all the way to complete engines that compete in the NHRA Pro-Stock motorcycle class.

That being said, we are looking for someone with initiative, commitment and a desire to make history! We are hiring a full-time apprentice level race engine builder to be a part of our Viola, Wisconsin product development facility.

Responsibilities:

  • Planning, fabrication, machining, assembly, testing and documentation of engine builds
  • Working with project teams to create and develop racing products
  • Race support travel as needed

Requirements:

  • Experience with shop tools and engine assembly/tear down
  • Flexible, energetic, forward-thinking, and creative
  • High analytical ability, good judgment, and strong operational focus
  • Well organized and self-directed
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Working knowledge of computer applications
  • Good driving record
  • High school diploma or equivalent, also prefer a two year technical degree with emphasis in powersports industry

If you seek the challenge to work in the high-pressure environment of competitive racing, contact hr@sscycle.com. No phone calls please.

 

Tags: racing, NHRA

S&S Cycle, Inc. to Sponsor Pro Dragster Class!

Posted by Performance Times on Tue, Apr 14, 2015 @ 03:12 PM

SturgisDragwaySturgis Dragway and Black Hills Drag Racing Association (BHDRA) are pleased to announce that S&S Cycle has agreed to be the Class Sponsor for the Pro Dragster Class during the 2015 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Drag Races. With it being the 75th annual event, it was decided to boost the Pro Dragster Class payouts to $1,500.00 plus a $300.00 gift card to win, $1,000.00 plus a $300.00 gift card for 2nd and a $450.00 gift card for the 2 runner ups.

In addition, S&S Cycle will be hosting Demo Rides at Sturgis Dragway on Thursday, August 6, 2015 during the Rally.

S&S Cycle’s involvement demonstrates their continued support of motorcycle drag racing and allows the Pro Dragster class more opportunities for competition.

S&S Cycle Racing Manager, Justin Bramstedt said, “S&S Cycle has history of supporting and supplying products for v-twin drag racing since 1958. The Pro Dragster class demonstrates the tried and true S&S Super “D” Carburetor, a product which has been around since 1983 and has paved the way for many S&S performance products all the way to today’s complete S&S engines.” Entering its 10th year as a racing association, the BHDRA is extremely excited to provide this highly competitive all motorcycle racing event during the 75th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally at Sturgis Dragway.

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Tags: racing, sturgis, BHDRA

Arana Jr. Sets New National Speed Record

Posted by Performance Times on Wed, Apr 01, 2015 @ 01:37 PM
by Matt Polito

Hector Arana Jr. came off a disappointing event at the NHRA Gatornationals to turn in an absolutely scintillating performance at the NHRA 4-Wide Nationals at zMAX Dragway in Concord, NC.  Arana Jr. qualified in the #1 position at 6.794 seconds and set a new national speed record of 199.88 mph on his S&S-powered Lucas Oil Pro Stock Buell.

Hector Arana Jr

Arana Jr. debuted a new EBR 1190RX-bodied machine at the season-opening Gatornationals in Gainesville, FL, only to withdraw it from competition due to handling issues.  For the 4-Wide he switched back to his trusty Buell XB9R and quickly distanced himself from the pack.

The 4-Wide event is unique on the NHRA tour. Held at the 4-lane “Bellagio of Drag Strips”, zMAX Dragway, racers qualify and run eliminations four-abreast, with each elimination “quad” producing two racers that advance to the next round.  With this format the usual four rounds of eliminations is cut down to three.

The fall event contested last year at zMAX - run in the traditional 2-lane format - was problematic.  Weather conditions caused rubber to peel and concrete to crack on the racing surface.  V. Gaines crashed his Pro Stock Car during the start of Sunday’s eliminations and subsequent rain settled the issue, forcing cancellation of the event.

As one would expect, the owners of zMAX Dragway, Speedway Motorsports Incorporated, didn’t take the situation lightly and repaved the facility, applying state-of-the-art, glass-smooth concrete for the first 700 feet of racing surface and equally-smooth asphalt the rest of the way.

For this year's event a weather front moved in on Friday and cancelled the first two rounds of qualifying. In its wake it left cold, dense “mine shaft” air and sunny skis to warm the racing surface – absolute optimal racing conditions. The forecast for the rest of the weekend called for fast.

Arana Jr. came out of the gate hard, running a track record 6.794 at 194 mph in the first session which held as the top qualifying position.

Following Arana Jr. on the qualifying sheet was reigning series champ Andrew Hines on the Harley-Davidson V-Rod at 6.826, Angelle Sampey on the Star Racing S&S-powered Buell at 6.853 and LE Tonglet on his Suzuki at 6.861.

After two rounds of racing the final quad consisted of Arana Jr., Hines and teammate Eddie Krawiec and Scotty Pollacheck on the Petrolhead Apparel Buell.

Scotty Pollacheck

Pollacheck renewed his sponsorship with the racewear maker for 2015 and will run the full season with Matt Smith Racing-prepared S&S Pro Stock Motors. Pollacheck has teamed up with Chaz Kennedy for the season.

Arana Jr. ran the quick lap in the final, running 6.804 at the record-setting 199.88 mph, but was beat off the line by the Harley-Davidsons of Andrew Hines and Eddie Krawiec who placed first and second respectively.  Pollacheck had a razor-thin -.003 redlight.

“Overall we had a great weekend as far as performance goes,” said Arana Jr. “We qualified No. 1 and then we ran 199.26 mph to tie the national speed record. I was able to then turn around and run 199.88 mph to break the record and bring the record home for us. I was so close to 200 mph, but it’s definitely an awesome feeling to be that close and to know that it’s there.”

 “This was definitely a really good rebound from Gainesville for me,” he continued. “The whole team is excited with all the potential we clearly have. I’m sure we turned a lot of heads this weekend, and we look forward to what will come for the rest of the year.”

The NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle racers will take a break and next hit the track at Summit Racing Southern Nationals at Atlanta Dragway, May 15-17.

 

Tags: racing, NHRA

Matt Smith Qualifies Number One, Karen Stoffer Wins

Posted by Performance Times on Thu, Mar 19, 2015 @ 11:17 AM
By Matt Polito 

The 2015 NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle series kicked off in dramatic fashion at the Amalie Oil Gatornationals in Gainesville, FL. The high anticipation of a new season was dashed as a string of bad luck besieged the top racers. In the end Karen Stoffer - who has not raced since Indy 2013 and had not considered running the Gators just weeks ago – outlasted the field for her first win since 2011. 

Optimism is always high at the first race of the season. New teams, new bikes and new alliances brings new enthusiasm to the NHRA series.

Top of the list is two-time champ Matt Smith who inked a major deal with Victory® Motorcycle to field a pair of Victory-branded race bikes. It marks the first time a new OEM fielded a bike in NHRA competition since the introduction of the S&S-powered Buell® in 2003. Victory is going all-in, with a major display area in the pits and having Smith navigate the tricky NHRA process of approving a new competition body. The new race bike is based on the Victory Gunner and powered by the S&S Pro Stock motor. Smith will run two bikes this season with him and his wife Angie on board. 

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Smith did well by his new sponsor, qualifying number one in the fast Saturday qualifying session with a run of 6.867 seconds at 194.02 mph. Ironically, wife Angie would face him in the first round of eliminations, having made the field in the 16th spot at 6.992/189.20.

With the sun shining as eliminations opened, Smith was dealt a crushing blow. A shop rag was left inside the body and was sucked into the engine during the burnout. Smith was able to re-start the bike but with the bike smoking, NHRA officials shut him off. Wife Angie took a single but lost to eventual winner Stoffer in the next round. It was a heartbreaking turn of events for the MSR team. 

Also debuting a new body at Gainesville was the Lucas Oil team of Hector Arana and his son, Hector Jr. The new bike is based on the Erik Buell Racing (EBR) 1190RX. The production EBR 1190RX is a v-twin sportbike, which makes it a perfect subject for a Pro Stock Motorcycle body to wrap around a current S&S-powered Pro Stock Chassis.

The Arana team struggled with the body in race conditions. Vertical gaps between the front wheel well and side panels cause air to get inside the body making the bike unstable at speed. Sr. swapped back to his old Buell body but Jr. did not have the option of a spare body. Jr. contacted NHRA tech officials and according to him they originally allowed the slits to be taped but then recanted when he ran a 6.88 in the final session. With the final run thrown out, Jr. was seeded to face his dad in the opening round. Citing safety concerns, he opted to sit out, leaving the exciting and good-looking EBR bodies on the sideline. 

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Angelle Sampey was back on the track in Gainesville after coming out of retirement last season only to injure her ankle in a non-racing pit accident two races later. She made noise on the unsponsored S&S-powered Star Racing Buell, leading qualifying on Friday with a 6.891. She improved on Saturday to a 6.872 but slipped to the second spot behind Matt Smith.

Angelle was the highest seeding rider in round two of eliminations but a throttle position sensor malfunctioned and she lost to the Suzuki® of LE Tonglet. 

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As eliminations progressed the Harley-Davidson® team of Andrew Hines and Eddie Krawiec looked destined to claim the winners circle but mechanical gremlins sidelined them as well. Hines had a transmission fail in the round two and Krawiec had an air shifter line come off in the final against Stoffer.

In the end Stoffer was able to outlast them all. The well-like veteran last raced at Indy in 2013 and wasn’t even considering racing Gainesville six weeks prior to the event. Husband Garry decided to dust off, update and repaint their Suzuki TL and enter the fray. She qualified 8th at 6.904 and was not without her own mechanical problems. She broke her transmission twice in qualifying and with only one motor, had to make the time-consuming repairs two days in a row.

It was Stoffer’s seventh win of her career and second win at Gainesville. It was only the third win for a Suzuki in the last four seasons. 

The NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycles are back at it at the 4-Wide Nationals at zMAX Dragway in Charlotte, NC, March 27-29 

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Tags: racing, NHRA, Pro Stock

S&S Cycle Inc. joins PMRA as Nitro Pro Dragster Class Sponsor!

Posted by Performance Times on Tue, Jan 27, 2015 @ 09:34 AM

Racing: it's where we prove our performance and it's a long tradition and passion of the S&S team! This is why we have decided to sponsor the Nitro Pro Dragster class in the PMRA! Here is what the PMRA had to say about it:

S&S Cycle logo
"Professional Motorcycle Racing Association (PMRA) is pleased to announce that S&S Cycle is the new Class Sponsor for the Nitro Pro Dragster class for 2015. Nitro Pro Dragster was a new class in 2014, competing at only 3 out of the 6 events.  In 2015, with the help of S&S Cycle, Nitro Pro Dragster will now be featured at all 5 events!  These nitro burning, v-twin powered machines are a feature class and the fans and racers line up to watch them blast down the quarter-mile.

 S&S Cycle’s involvement demonstrates their continued support of motorcycle drag racing and allows the Nitro Pro Dragster class more opportunities for competition.

S&S Cycle Racing Manager, Justin Bramstedt said, “S&S Cycle has history of supporting and supplying products for v-twin drag racing since 1958.  The Pro Dragster class demonstrates the tried and true S&S Super “D” Carburetor, a product which has been around since 1983 and has paved the way for many S&S performance products all the way to today’s complete S&S engines.”

Look for S&S Cycle information and apparel available at all PMRA events in the 2015 season and on the web at www.sscycle.com.

Entering its 22nd year as a racing association, the PMRA looks forward to strengthening its commitment to providing a highly-competitive, family-friendly, quarter-mile, all motorcycle racing venue for many years to come." 

For more info: www.pmra.net

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Tags: racing, PMRA

Frank Hawley Drag Racing School

Posted by Performance Times on Wed, Dec 17, 2014 @ 10:22 AM
By S&S Racing Department Manager Justin Bramstedt

I recently attended the Frank Hawley Drag Racing School in Gainesville, FL. The class was taught by George Bryce from Star Racing.  I was a 'classroom only' attendee and had no intention of riding the bikes.  But even so, the experience was well beyond my expectations. 

The first day started out with introductions.  There were eight full program students and three of us who were 'classroom only'.  The reasons for attendance ranged from bucket-list to full NHRA Pro-Stock motorcycle licensing.  The age of students ranged from low 20’s to upper 70’s.  Experience varied from street motorcycle rider to all-out proven champions who raced faster bikes in other classes.  Several of the students were repeating the class.

Frank Hawley Drag Racing School

Next we were taught about the steps that were to be required in order to make a pass down the drag strip.  There were three main steps required in order to make a pass; burnout, dry-hop, staging.  Each step had another series of 20-30 steps.  It quickly became obvious that no one was going to remember all these steps until they had practiced them.  Oh yeah, and you have to let go of the handle bar when you throw the clutch lever to launch the bike and steer with your feet!  So out to the track we went.  The first lessons were getting acquainted with the bike, a slightly detuned NHRA Pro Stock style chassis capable of the 7.800 second quarter mile run required for an NHRA license.  The full program students rode it down the track while being pushed to get the feel for steering, and braking.

Then it got progressively harder starting with a 60’ pass and then a 330’ pass and so on until the full ¼ mile.  The first launches are an eye opening experience.  As a spectator, I understood how serious the situation was for the rider but it was hard not to laugh when these crazy individuals tried to pop the clutch at WOT for the first time.  For me the terms bucking-bronco and flying tomahawk came to mind.  The act of launching one of these pro-level machines is no joke!  It became obvious that much more was required of the racer than a simple series of steps. We even joked that more skid marks were left in their shorts than on the drag strip that day. 

The day was wrapped up with Frank Hawley in the classroom explaining some of the science and psychology behind learning to launch one of these machines by reprogramming your subconscious mind through repetition in the conscious mind.  It was explained that consciously we can only do one thing at a time while subconsciously we can multi-task.  The problem is the unconscious mind is a slow learner and it can only be programmed through practice.

Day two brought a rested group of students who had rehearsed their routine step-by-step such that it was committed to their subconscious.  Frank walked us through some more drag racing science involving reaction-time, bio-mechanics, vision, clearing your mind and controlling your emotions.  All of which was very enlightening and applicable to everyday life.

The students were then allowed to practice their new programs and it was amazing to see how much they progressed over the next few runs. All in all, the experience is much more than just making a ¼ mile pass, it was more about programming your brain to do something new because of the number of tasks that have to executed in such a short amount of time. It gave me a whole new perspective on what it takes to race one of these machines on a professional level. Thanks to Frank Hawley and Star Racing for an excellent experience.


sscycle1's Racing School album on Photobucket

JP Stroker S&S Cup 2014 in Japan

Posted by Performance Times on Fri, Dec 12, 2014 @ 12:48 PM

S&S Cycle attended the 2014 JP Stroker S&S Cup finale at the Fukushima Sky Park, near Fukushima, Japan Oct 25th and 26th. S&S was represented by Manufacturing Services Manager, Bill Wise. Bill attended the final race and handed out prizes and trophies during the awards ceremony at the Sky Park after the race.

JP Stroker Japan

This is the fourth year for the JP Stroker S&S Cup Series and the program is gaining more momentum every year. There are five racing events at various locations throughout Japan, with the final race at Fukushima. The series is sponsored by S&S Cycle and JP Stroker, the only S&S distributor in Japan, and is held under the auspices of the V-twin Drag Association of Japan. Although there are many participants backed by Japanese speed shops, and private race teams, some of the fiercest competitors are employees of JP Stroker. These guys are really “into it” and are not afraid to invest the time and effort to build highly competitive race bikes. That’s why they are in the business!

There are a number of classes for modern and vintage bikes of different degrees of modification, so there is an opportunity for just about anybody to race, and to race against comparably equipped opponents. It also allows racers with different styles of bikes and budgets to compete.

The speeds for this event were somewhat lower than at some of the other S&S Cup events. The altitude was definitely a factor. The Sky Park is on top of a mountain, and thinner air makes less power. But another factor may be that at the end of the tarmac is a shear drop down the mountain side. That’s got to be on your mind as you speed headlong toward the end of the track!

Tags: racing, events

Arana Wins the Finals, Hines Takes the Championship

Posted by Performance Times on Wed, Nov 19, 2014 @ 09:37 AM
Story by Matt Polito

Hector Arana Jr. finished the Pro Stock Motorcycle season on a high note, going from the number one qualifying position to the winner’s circle at the Auto Club Finals at Pomona CA.

2014 NHRA Pomona Final
Andrew Hines, who entered the event with an almost insurmountable points lead, cinched his fourth Mello Yello championship.

While the attention was on Hines and his quest for the championship, Arana Jr. was the star of the event.  He qualified his Lucas Oil S&S-powered Buell number one at 6.832 seconds, recorded the low e.t. (6.808) and top speed (198.17 mph) of the event, and took the second win of the year and ninth of his career.

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“We are happy we were able to seal the deal and win the event,” said Arana, Jr. “Sometimes when you qualify number one it jinxes you. I am glad we were able to get the win for the team. It is a real confidence booster for us and a great way to go into the off-season.”

Arana Jr. led qualifying from the onset, recording the 6.832 during the second session on Friday. 

Following Arana Jr. on the qualifying sheet were the Harleys of Hines and teammate Eddie Krawiec, the Nitro Fish Buell of Matt Smith and the Bad Boy Buggies Suzuki of Jim Underdahl.

The field was anchored by the popular local rider Freddie Camarena on his Danny Griego Suzuki.  Camarena recorded his first career six-second run at the event and was congratulated by what seemed like the entire PSM pits.  His best of 6.974 held the 16th spot.

A notable non-qualifier was Michael Ray.  After leaving the Star Racing team, Ray made a splash in Las Vegas qualifying third on his independent Gruene Harley-Davidson Buell with tuning my Matt Smith.  Mechanical problems kept Ray from making a full pass at Pomona and he did not make the field.

Notable off the entry sheet was John Hall, the number 8 ranked rider of the Nitro Fish Buell running out of Matt Smith Racing.  Reportedly, a dispute developed between Smith and Hall’s chief mechanic Bobby Webb and Hall decided not to run without Webb.

Hines, who came into the event with a 92 point lead in the Mello Yello points chase, sealed the championship with a first round win over Katie Sullivan.

Arana Jr. held a torrid pace during eliminations.  He ran a 6.83 in round one to oust Camarena, “slowed” to a 6.88 in round two to dispatch the Suzuki of Steve Johnson, and then ran the quick lap of the event at 6.808 to get by the Star Racing Buell of Chaz Kennedy and earn lane choice against Krawiec in the final.

Arana Jr. cut a sharp, .010 light in the final and led the whole way as Krawiec struggled in the suspect right hand lane. Krawiec was out of power just before the finish line as Arana Jr. took the win, 6.832 to 6.977.

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“We’ve been making the right adjustments to stay consistent,” said Arana Jr. “I feel good, the bike is running good that brings all the confidence back. When it is running smooth it is easy to ride.”

Arana Jr. dedicated the win to his brother Adam who will leave the drag racing scene to join the Coast Guard next year.  We wish him well.

The 2015 NHRA Mello Yello PSM season kicks off in Gainesville, FL March 13-15, 2015.

The final NHRA Mello Yello Pro Stock Motorcycle Points:

Pos Rider Bike Points
1 Andrew Hines  Screamin’ Eagle H-D 2,689
2 Eddie Krawiec Screamin’ Eagle H-D 2,620
3 Hector Arana Jr  Lucas Oil S&S Buell 2,472
4 Matt Smith Nitro Fish S&S Buell 2,416
5 Steve Johnson Johnson Racing Suz 2,369
6 Scotty Pollacheck Petrohead S&S Buell 2,350
7 Hector Arana Lucas Oil S&S Buell 2,319
8 John Hall Nitro Fish S&S Buell 2,253
9 Angie Smith Kandy Mag S&S Buell 2,223
10 Michael Ray Greune H-D S&S Buell 2,144

Tags: racing, NHRA, land speed racer

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