SCREAMIN’ EAGLE/VANCE & HINES TEAM HOT IN ATLANTA
Tonglet Rolls to Semi-Final Round; Hines Retains Pro Stock Bike Points Lead
COMMERCE, Ga. (May 16, 2004) – The Screamin’ Eagle/Vance & Hines team battled a tough Pro Stock Bike field at the 24th Annual Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals, as riders Andrew Hines and GT Tonglet advanced in the elimination rounds aboard Screamin’ Eagle V-Rod motorcycles. Hines retained the Pro Stock Bike season points lead, while Tonglet had a hot weekend, with a new track record top speed of 192.91 mph in qualifying and a run to the semi-final round of eliminations that moved him into second place in Pro Stock Bike points.
“Both bikes and riders were running strong again this weekend,” said Screamin’ Eagle Racing Manager Anne Paluso. “We’ve had one or both of the Screamin’ Eagle V-Rods as far as the semi-final round at each event so far this season, and that consistency has us leading the series. Now we’ll bring some great momentum to the next event at Joliet, where we expect to have a big Harley-Davidson home-town crowd coming down from Milwaukee.”
Tonglet qualified fourth for the event with a run of 7.150 seconds at 192.91 mph. Hines was fifth in qualifying at 7.161/189.73. Angelle Savoie led all qualifiers with a run of 7.121/189.02.
“GT’s bike was dialed in all weekend,” said team owner Byron Hines. “We’re still having some issues with perfecting our set up with the power we found in the off season, and we’re learning more with every run.”
Both Screamin’ Eagle riders advanced cleanly through round one of eliminations. Tonglet (7.178/191.76) beat Chip Hunter (7.276/183.79), while Hines (7.217/184.42) defeated Karen Stoffer (7.251/183.94), his closest rival in the points race coming into the event.
That set up a showdown between the two Screamin’ Eagle riders in round two. Hines (7.190/191.95) had a perfect light, with a reaction time of just 0.001 seconds, but Tonglet (0.011, 7.178/186.51) chased him down with a super run to take the win by just 0.0024 seconds, or about eight inches at the finish line.
“I always hate to lose, but getting beat by my teammate makes it a little easier,” said Hines. “I had that great start, so he had to make a great run to beat me and he pulled it off.”
That put Tonglet in the semi-final round, where he faced top qualifier Angelle Savoie. Tonglet (7.217/185.41) jumped the start
(-0.025) for a red light to hand the win and a trip to the final to Savoie (7.160/183.52). It was the first red light by a Screamin’ Eagle rider of the season. In the final round Savoie (7.119/191.59) defeated Shawn Gann (7.248/186.15) to win the event.
“I was happy to be able to represent Harley-Davidson in the semi-final round this weekend,” said Tonglet. “It’s unfortunate that I had to defeat my teammate to get there, but we sure had a great race. I think this shows that the Screamin’ Eagle team is going to be competitive at every event this season.”
After three rounds of the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, Andrew Hines leads the Pro Stock Bike class with 250 points. Tonglet is second with 225 points, and Stoffer drops to third with 222 points.
The next Pro Stock Bike event on the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series is the 7th Annual NHRA Route 66 Nationals, May 20-23, at Route 66 Speedway in Joliet, Ill.
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