38th annual Texas NHRA FallNationals
October 13-15, 2023
Gaige Herrera Wins and Sets Record
After a record-breaking weekend, it was only fitting that Gaige Herrera capped off his special weekend in Pro Stock Motorcycle with a victory, knocking off teammate Eddie Krawiec in the final round with a run of 6.644 at 203.30 on his Mission Foods/Vance & Hines Suzuki. It was Herrera’s seventh straight run in the 6.60s this weekend at the Texas Motorplex, a streak that included Saturday’s record-breaking blast of 6.627 at 204.16. He followed with his ninth win of his magnificent 2023 season on Sunday, strengthening his points lead in the process.
He knocked off Blaine Hale, Chris Bostick and Hector Arana Jr. to reach the final round and then put together his quickest run of the day in the final round to beat Krawiec for a second straight race, again denying the multi-time world champ his 50th career win. Herrera now holds a 156-point lead over Krawiec and will have a chance to clinch his first career world championship in Las Vegas.
“A year can make a world of difference. I’m just here living the dream,” Herrera said. “This bike has been flying all weekend and this whole weekend has been cool. This is a special one right here and one I’ll never forget. It’s been this incredible what this Vance & Hines team has given me. My bike has been flying and it’s crazy how fast it is and how easy it has been to ride. It’s on a string right now.
“It’s been an incredible experience this weekend in Dallas. Getting the national record (on Saturday) and then the win, and doing it in front of all these great fans all weekend, it’s been amazing.”
Krawiec advanced to his third final round this year and 84th in his career by getting past Cory Reed, Matt Smith and Joey Gladstone.
The NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series returns to action Oct. 26-29 with the NHRA Nevada Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
W – Chris Bostick / 0.031 / 6.851 / 194.95
L – Steve Johnson / 0.058 / 7.051 / 166.45
This is the first time in his last 21 starts that Chris Bostick has been in the top half of the field. Steve Johnson is 17 – 25 in Rd. 1 when starting 9th. Johnson is 4 – 0 against Bostick in prior events. Bostick gets out of the gate first, drifts to the left all the way through the run, but hangs on for the win. Johnson was a little sluggish all the way through the run.
W – Marc Ingwersen / 0.007 / 6.8 / 197.74
L – Jianna Evaristo / 0.09 / 6.972 / 163.86
This is the 6th time this year that Marc Ingwersen has been in the top half of the field. Jianna Evaristo is 2 – 0 against Ingwersen and they have both been in Rd. 1. Ingwersen gets a big holeshot but Evaristo starts making up ground quickly. She continues to make up ground to half track, then Ingwersen starts pulling away again and takes the stripe for the win.
W – Matt Smith / 0.024 / 6.845 / 198.55
L – Ryan Oehler / 0.095 / 6.868 / 187.6
Matt Smith wins 82% of his Rd.1 races when he has lane choice. Ryan Oehler is 2 – 8 in Rd. 1 this year. Smith is 8 – 3 against Oehler in prior events. Smith gets the advantage off of the line and starts pulling away. Oehler starts making up ground a little past the 330 foot mark but drifted a little to the left. Smith is able to start going ground again and takes the win. Matt Smith’s incremental margins: 60ft(0.061), 330 ft(0.070), 660ft(0.066), 1,000ft(0.068).
W – Hector Arana Jr / 0.05 / 6.725 / 203.48
L – Malcolm Phillips Jr / 0.022 / 7.008 / 186.76
Hector Arana Jr. is 10 – 2 in Rd. 1 this year. Malcolm Phillips Jr. is making his 3rd start. This is the first time Arana Jr and Phillips Jr. have faced each other in eliminations. Phillips gets the holeshot but Arana reels him in before they reach the 330 foot mark and pulls away for the win. Hector Arana Jr’s incremental margins (negative if behind): 60ft(-0.026), 330 ft(0.017), 660ft(0.081), 1,000ft(0.162).
W – John Hall / 0.081 / 6.804 / 199.06
L – Chase Van Sant / Broke
John Hall is 0 – 9 in Rd. 1 this year. Van Sant doesn’t make the call to the line. Hall makes a decent pass but will give up lane choice to Arana in the next round.
W – Joey Gladstone / 0.02 / 6.738 / 197.5
L – Kelly Clontz / 0.045 / 6.763 / 199.12
This (#2) is the best staring spot for Kelly Clontz. It is just the 4th time in her 81 races that she has qualified in the top half of the field. Joey Gladstone is making his 7th start this year. Gladstone is 1 – 0 against Clontz in prior events. Gladstone gets the advantage off of the line and extends his lead all the way through the run. Gladstone will have lane choice over Ingwersen in the next round.
W – Eddie Krawiec / 0.047 / 6.853 / 201.67
L – Cory Reed / 0.028 / 7.138 / 167.81
Eddie Krawiec is 12 – 0 in Rd. 1 this year. Cory Reed is making his 4th start this year. Krawiec is 4 – 2 against Reed in prior events. Reed gets the holeshot but Krawiec is able to reel him in before they get 300 feet out and he pulls away for the win. Smith will have lane choice over Krawiec in the next round.
W – Gaige Herrera / 0.097 / 6.657 / 202.65
L – Blaine Hale / 0.114 / 7.262 / 186.57
W – Joey Gladstone / 0.095 / 6.766 / 200.3
L – Marc Ingwersen / Rolls Beam
Gladstone is 3 – 0 against Ingwersen in prior events. Ingwersen rolls through the beams and does not receive a time. Gladstone makes a clean, straight pass.
W – Eddie Krawiec / 0.039 / 6.731 / 201.05
L – Matt Smith / 0.021 / 6.857 / 197.75
Krawiec is 32 – 24 against Smith in prior events. Smith gets the holeshot but Krawiec goes around him before they reach the sixty foot mark and pulls away for the in. Krawiec will have lane choice over Gladstone in the next round.
W – Hector Arana Jr / 0.017 / 6.779 / 199.99
L – John Hall-0.027 / 6.816 / 198.53
Arana Jr is 9 – 0 against Hall in prior events. Hall is a little too quick off of the line and goes red giving the win to Arana.
W – Gaige Herrera / 0.07 / 6.656 / 204.01
L – Chris Bostick / Left before Tree
Herrera is 1 – 0 against Bostick in prior events. Bostick leaves before the tree is activated and goes red giving the win to Herrera. Herrera goes down the groove with another impressive pass. He now has the top four quickest passes in PSM history. Herrera will have lane choice over Arana in the next round.
W – Eddie Krawiec / 0.035 / 6.692 / 203.88
L – Joey Gladstone / 0.01 / 6.814 / 195.1
Gladstone gets the holeshot but it isn’t enough. Krawiec reels him in and goes around him just past the 330 foot mark and pulls away for the win with a career best ET. Eddie Krawiec’s incremental times: 60ft-1.064 sec., 330ft-2.813, 660ft-4.293/165.47 mph, 1,000ft-5.587. Krawiec is going to his third final this year and the 94th of his career.
W – Gaige Herrera / 0.068 / 6.661 / 203.49
L – Hector Arana Jr / 0.045 / 6.734 / 199.4
Arana gets the holeshot but Herrera goes around him before they reach the sixty foot mark. Herrera takes the win and is going to his tenth career final round. Herrera will have lane choice over Krawiec in the final round.
Win – Gaige Herrera / 0.025 / 6.644 / 203.3
Runner-up – Eddie Krawiec / 0.047 / 6.706 / 202.56
QUALIFYING – SATURDAY
Gaige Herrera rocketed to a run of 6.627-seconds at 204.16 mph on his Mission Foods/Vance & Hines Suzuki, shattering the previous national record. It was also the second-fastest run in Pro Stock Motorcycle history. Herrera, who has eight wins this year, earned his 12th No. 1 spot, setting the class record for the most No. 1 qualifiers in a single season. He’ll open eliminations against Blaine Hale, looking to close out yet another magical weekend this season.
“We didn’t think it would be possible, but it was a picture-perfect run,” Herrera said. “It was so smooth it felt slow. We’re definitely happy about that and I was actually almost more excited about that than winning a race. It’s just a big accomplishment. I’ve got a fast motorcycle, and I feel if something doesn’t break and I don’t mess up, it’s going to be hard to beat us.
“There has been a lot to take in this season and I really don’t think it’s all set in. I can’t really put into words. A year ago today I would not have thought I’d be in the position I’m in, especially accomplishing so much that we have so far this season.”
Kelly Clontz made the best run of her career, going 6.705 at 201.99 to make a massive jump to second. Eddie Krawiec took third on the strength of his 6.714 at 203.92.
1. Gaige Herrera, Suzuki, 6.627, 204.16
2. Kelly Clontz, Suzuki, 6.705, 201.99
3. Eddie Krawiec, Suzuki, 6.714, 203.92
4. Hector Arana Jr, Buell, 6.736, 198.42
5. John Hall, EBR, 6.788, 198.80
6. Matt Smith, Suzuki, 6.804, 199.03
7. Marc Ingwersen, EBR, 6.814, 197.60
16. Blaine Hale, Suzuki, 7.196, 171.80
8. Chris Bostick, EBR, 6.818, 194.86
9. Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 6.828, 197.52
10. Jianna Evaristo, Suzuki, 6.857, 196.82
11. Ryan Oehler, EBR, 6.890, 196.76
12. Chase Van Sant, Suzuki, 6.912, 195.08
13. Malcolm Phillips Jr., Suzuki, 6.923, 191.39
14. Cory Reed, Suzuki, 6.962, 193.75
15. Joey Gladstone, Buell, 7.143, 149.34
Did Not Qualify:
17. Richard Gadson, broke.
QUALIFYING – FRIDAY
Pro Stock Motorcycle points leader Gaige Herrera closed in on another historic mark in his spectacular 2023 season, setting the track E.T. record at Texas Motorplex with a standout run of 6.689 at 203.41 on his Mission Foods / Vance & Hines Suzuki . It gave him the $5,000 “Friday Night Live” low qualifier bonus and puts him on track for his 12th No. 1 qualifier in 13 races. Should that hold up on Saturday, Herrera would set the single-season record for No. 1 qualifiers in the category, breaking his current tie with Matt Hines. The points leader made the quickest runs in both sessions on Friday as he also looks for his third straight victory in the Countdown to the Championship.
“Overall, the day went really good for us,” Herrera said. “To be up there on the saddle, have a little fun, and get a little extra cash, it’s very cool to get those bragging rights. We’ve kind of been getting bragging rights all season, but to get the cash on top of that is good for the whole team.
“It would mean a lot to pass up Matt Hines who had that record before. If I’m able to do that, it’s going to mean a lot to me and to everyone at the shop. We’re happy to keep it under the same roof. That alone is very cool, but I have to give up all the credit to Andrew (Hines, crew chief) and all the guys at the shop at Vance & Hines. They work their butt off day and night, and it shows on the racetrack.”
Herrera’s teammate, Eddie Krawiec, took the second spot with a 6.727 at 202.35 as he looks for his 50th career win this weekend. Hector Arana Jr. is third thanks to a 6.756 at 201.20.
1. Gaige Herrera, Suzuki, 6.689, 203.41
2. Eddie Krawiec, Suzuki, 6.727, 202.35
3. Hector Arana Jr, Buell, 6.756, 201.20
4. John Hall, EBR, 6.788, 198.80
5. Chris Bostick, EBR, 6.818, 194.86
6. Jianna Evaristo, Suzuki, 6.857, 196.82
7. Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 6.870, 192.34
8. Matt Smith, Suzuki, 6.872, 197.27
9. Chase Van Sant, Suzuki, 6.912, 195.08
10. Kelly Clontz, Suzuki, 6.914, 195.33
11. Marc Ingwersen, EBR, 6.938, 195.47
12. Cory Reed, Suzuki, 6.962, 193.75
13. Ryan Oehler, EBR, 6.963, 192.50
14. Joey Gladstone, Buell, 7.143, 149.34
15. Malcolm Phillips Jr., Suzuki, 7.179, 190.94
16. Blaine Hale, Suzuki, 7.196, 171.80
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