AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals
Texas Motorplex – Ennis, TX
Oct 17-20, 2019
Pro Stock Motorcycle
Pro Stock Motorcycle’s Savoie went 6.881 at 195.90 in the final round on his White Alligator Racing Suzuki to knock off Eddie Krawiec and claim his third win in 2019. It is his 12th career win. Savoie also earned his second win in the Countdown to the Championship, closing to within 94 points of leader Andrew Hines heading into the final two events. Savoie reached his fifth straight final in Dallas with wins against Jianna Salinas, Karen Stoffer and Hines, picking up a key victory against the points leader before knocking off Krawiec in a pivotal final round.
“It was a great day and we knew we had a good bike coming in,” Savoie said. “We said if we held our composure we could win this thing. For the most part, tracks favor certain riders and we’ve been blessed here. It’s a great place and today was great. Bottom line, I want a championship just as bad as anybody else, so whoever is in my way I’m going to do everything I can to try and beat them. I felt good and we’ve got a great team. To me, this win gives you more hope and means a lot. This gives you that window of opportunity where you could win a championship again.”
Krawiec reached his 47th final round thanks to wins against Ryan Oehler, No. 1 qualifier Matt Smith and Angelle Sampey. The three-time world champ remains winless in his last 10 final-round appearances dating back to last season. Hines’ points lead also grew to 81 over Stoffer.
The Mello Yello Drag Racing Series continues Oct. 31-Nov. 3 with the fifth of six races in the Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship playoffs, the Dodge NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
|Driver||Eddie Krawiec – WIN||Ryan Oehler|
|660 FT MPH||159.80||160.67|
|Krawiec is 1 – 0 against Oehler in prior events. Krawiec gets the holeshot and extends his lead to the 33 foot mark. Oehler was drifting to the left early but was able to start making up ground at half track. he continued to gain ground but Krawiec held on for the win.|
|Driver||Angie Smith||Karen Stoffer – WIN|
|660 FT MPH||159.70||161.30|
Karen Stoffer’s 4 rounds in Charlotte gave her 402 for her career and she is only the 8th Pro Stock Motorcycle rider to compete in 400 or more rounds. Stoffer is 9 – 2 against Smith in prior events. Stoffer is second in points behind the leader Hines. Smith gets out of the gate first but Stoffer reels her in at half track and pulls away for the win.
|Driver||Andrew Hines – WIN||Hector Arana Jr|
|660 FT MPH||159.82||159.66|
Hines gets a small holeshot and extends his lead all the way through the run to take the win.
|Driver||Angelle Sampey – WIN||Hector Arana|
|660 FT MPH||159.32||159.02|
Arana is a little too quick off the line and goes red giving the win to Sampey.
|Driver||Scott Pollacheck – WIN||Kelly Clontz|
|660 FT MPH||160.16||158.07|
Clontz gets out of the gate first, holds the lead all the way to the 1000 foot mark, then Pollacheck is able to go around and take the stripe for the win.
|Driver||Steve Johnson – WIN||Michael Ray|
|660 FT MPH||160.96||157.50|
Johnson is 2 – 1 against Ray in prior events. A coin flip off the line, Johnson gets out in front quickly. Ray gets about 1100 feet out and the engine goes silent, not sure why. Johnson goes on through with the quickest pass of the day so far to take the win.
|Driver||Jianna Salinas||Jerry Savoie – WIN|
|660 FT MPH||145.99||161.69|
Salinas gets the holeshot and stays in front past the sixty-foot mark. She starts drifting to the left, gets very close to the wall and has to back off the throttle. Savoie goes right down the groove with a clean pass, the quickest of the round, and he takes the win.
|Driver||Matt Smith – WIN||—|
|660 FT MPH||161.36||—|
In 257 races this is just the 2nd time that Matt Smith has had a bye run. Smith gets the bye and will have lane choice over Krawiec in the next round.
|Driver||Scott Pollacheck||Angelle Sampey – WIN|
|660 FT MPH||157.98||158.41|
Pollacheck and Sampey have each won 5 times against the other in prior events. Sampey gets a little holeshot and extends her lead to half-track. Pollacheck is able to make up a little ground late but runs out of race track.
|Driver||Steve Johnson||Andrew Hines – WIN|
|660 FT MPH||160.16||157.50|
Hines is 32 – 7 against Johnson in prior events. Hines gets out of the gate first and starts to pull away. Johnson is able to make up a little ground after the 330 foot mark but runs out of room. Hines gets out of the groove early, has to really lean on the bike to keep it off of the wall, but he is able to hang on and take the holeshot win.
|Driver||Matt Smith||Eddie Krawiec – WIN|
|660 FT MPH||159.44||159.63|
Krawiec is 25 – 17 against Smith in prior events. Smith gets out of the gate first but Krawiec reels him in and takes the lead before they reach the sixty foot mark. He continues to pull away and takes the stripe for the win.
|Driver||Karen Stoffer||Jerry Savoie – WIN|
|660 FT MPH||160.44||160.94|
Stoffer gets the holeshot, stays in front to the 1000 foot mark, then Savoie pulls even and moves ahead for the win.
|Driver||Angelle Sampey||Eddie Krawiec – WIN|
|660 FT MPH||155.02||158.13|
Sampey gets the advantage off of the line and starts extending her lead. Krawiec had a sluggish sixty foot time, a 1.093, but he started making a move a little past the 330 foot mark. he continues to make up ground, then gets around Sampey a little before the finish line and takes the win. Krawiec is going to his fifth final round this year and the 84th of his career.
|Driver||Andrew Hines||Jerry Savoie – WIN|
|660 FT MPH||156.08||160.16|
Hines is 15 – 10 against Savoie in prior events. Hines gets a little off the line but Savoie goes around him before they reach the sixty-foot mark. Savoie extends his lead for the rest of the run to take the win. Savoie is going to his fourth final this year and the 28th of his career where he will have lane choice over Krawiec.
|Driver||Eddie Krawiec||Jerry Savoie – WIN|
|660 FT MPH||159.68||160.65|
Krawiec is 24 – 9 against Savoie in prior events and Krawiec is 7 – 1 against Savoie in prior final rounds. Savoie gets out of the gate first and starts to pull away. He goes on through, extending his lead all the way through the run. Savoie takes his third win of the year and the 12th of his career.
Defending Pro Stock Motorcycle world champ Matt Smith stayed in the top spot after his impressive run of 6.776 at 200.26 on his Denso Auto Parts/Stockseth/MSR EBR on Friday. Smith, who also set the track speed record, earned fifth No. 1 qualifier of 2019 and 36th in his career. Jerry Savoie will begin eliminations from the second position after his 6.790 at 196.13 on Friday, while Steve Johnson moved into the third spot on Saturday with a 6.830 at 194.44. Points leader Andrew Hines qualified sixth with a 6.851 at 196.96.
“It’s just a lot of hard work after the struggles we had at Charlotte,” Smith said. “We had two tough days of non-stop work, and I can’t say enough about my crew guys and the people who help me. Not only are we No. 1 qualifier, we get some bonus points and we get a bye in the first round. All in all, we’ve got a good bike for tomorrow.”
FINAL QUALIFYING ORDER
|11||Hector Arana Jr||6.875||195.56|
Three days that may have saved Matt Smith’s season and his bid for a repeat title
by Phil Burgess, NHRA National Dragster Editor
Matt Smith made Texas Motorplex history Friday night when he powered his Denso EBR to the track’s first 200-mph Pro Stock Motorcycle pass but it was the result of a lot of behind-the-scenes work in the three days between events.
19 Oct 2019 Phil Burgess, NHRA National Dragster Editor
Matt Smith knew something was wrong, he just didn’t know what. His normally potent Denso EBR struggled in qualifying at the NTK NHRA Carolina Nationals, ranking just 13th, followed by a first-round exit.
He had already watched his name plummet down the standings, from third entering the Countdown to the Championship to sixth, and couldn’t understand why the bike that had carried him to the No. 1 spot at the AAA Insurance Midwest Nationals in St. Louis had become possessed.
With a rain delay forcing a Monday conclusion to the Charlotte event and the AAA Texas NHRA FallNationls in Dallas just days away, Smith knew that he had to act quickly if he had any chance to defending his 2018 world championship.
“We left Charlotte Monday night and I had two of my crew guys, Michael Ray and Nate Kendrick, come home with me instead of flying home,” he said. “We stripped the bike down, pulled the motor out, pulled all of the wiring off and saw that the chassis was broken. I called ‘Dog’ [chassis builder Mike Furick] and told him we needed to get the bike on his chassis jig. Tuesday morning, we made the two-hour drive to his shop in Mooresville [N.C.], and he had it fixed by 1:30 that afternoon. We left there, drove home, and I rewired the bike, put the motor in it, and got everything else ready.
“Wednesday morning at 6 a.m. we left King, N.C., and drove straight through to Texas, and got here at 1 a.m. then went to a little eighth-mile track just up the road [from Texas Motorplex]. At 7 a.m. we were testing and, problem solved. Kudos to my crew; I couldn’t have done it without them.
Smith’s hard work paid off Friday night when he made Texas Motorplex history by powering to the track’s first 200-mph Pro Stock Motorcycle pass and the provisional No. 1 qualifying spot. He now hopes to parlay that into a victory at the event and the chance to cut into Andrew Hines’ points lead if he wants to have any real kind of chance of holding onto the No. 1 plate,
“I’ve come here my whole life and never won this race,” he said. “We’ve had a customer –- Michael Ray –- win this race, but I’ve never done it and this race is not on the 2020 bike schedule so I’d like to have this off my bucket list.”
Matt Smith’s 200-mph blast carries his Denso EBR to No. 1 in Pro Stock Motorcycle
Reigning world champ Matt Smith flexed the muscles of his Denso-backed EBR, cracking off the first 200-mph Pro Stock Motorcycle pass at Texas Motorplex en route to grabbing the No. 1 qualifying spot.
Reigning world champ Matt Smith flexed the muscles of his Denso-backed EBR, cracking off the first 200-mph Pro Stock Motorcycle pass at Texas Motorplex en route to grabbing the No. 1 qualifying spot. Smith improved by a tenth on his opening pass of 6.87 with a 6.777 at 200.26 mph to take over the No. 1 spot. the previous best speed in track history was 198.99, set four years ago by Jerry Savoie.
“The run was pretty awesome,” said smith. “We struggled last week in Charlotte and went home and did a lot of work and found that the frame was broken. We got that fixed and tested at a little eighth-mile track down the road [from Texas Motorplex] and made four runs and the problem was fixed. I was too conservative the first run because the track was really good and I bogged the motor and slipped the clutch, so we decided to shoot for the moon on the next run. We got after it and she held.”
Indy champ Savoie, still reeling from back-to-back first-round losses at the last two events, crushed it on his second pass aboard the White Alligator Racing Suzuki, improving from a 6.87 to a 6.790 to take the No. 2 spot as both bumped first-session leader Angelle Sampey’s 6/847 from the top spot; Sampey’s Harley could only manage a 6.854 on its evening pass.
Scotty Pollacheck picked up four-hundredths off his opening pass, rocketing his Strutmasters.com EBR to a 6.850 that momentarily had him in the lofty No. 2 spot before sliding down two spots to fourth, just ahead of Andrew Hines’ Q1 pass of 6.851.
Recent St. Louis winner Karen Stoffer recovered from an aborted nine-second pass in Q1 with a 6.853 in the second session to grab the No. 6 spot, a number matched by Eddie Krawiec, who also struggled in Q1 with a 6.90, more than a half-tenth off the quick early pace then ran 6.857 for No. 7.
The top half of the field is rounded out by Ryan Oehler, who improved two-hundredths from his opening lap with a 6.866.
ROUND 2 QUALIFYING ORDER
Defending Pro Stock Motorcycle world champ Matt Smith put together the lone 200-mph pass to set the track speed record in the category on Friday, blasting to the top spot with an impressive run of 6.776 at 200.26 on his Denso Auto Parts/Stockseth/MSR EBR. Smith is after his fifth No. 1 qualifier of 2019 and 36th in his career. Jerry Savoie sits second with a 6.790 at 196.13, while Angelle Sampey is a spot behind after going 6.847 at 194.74.
|10||Hector Arana Jr||6.875||195.56|
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