Harley-Davidson® Screamin’ Eagle®/Vance & Hines riders Ed Krawiec and Andrew Hines continued advancement of the team’s new Harley-Davidson® V-Rod® motorcycles, as both riders qualified for the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Spring Nationals presented by Super Start Batteries at Royal Purple Raceway, the third Pro Stock Motorcycle event in the 2013 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series.
Hines, a winner for three consecutive years at the Houston event, qualified third with an Elapsed Time (ET) of 6.904 seconds. Krawiec had a best ET of 6.947 seconds to qualify in the 14th position. Lucas Oil Buell rider Hector Arana Jr. led all qualifiers at 6.876 seconds. For the second week in a row, rain washed out one of the four qualifying sessions, robbing the Screamin’ Eagle®/Vance & Hines team of valuable track time.
“We were really using this race as a test session,” said Hines. “We tried some things with both bikes, going one way with my bike and the other with Ed’s V-Rod. Obviously my tune-up was working better, but then we lost that last session on Saturday, or I’m sure Ed would have qualified further up in the field.”
The qualifying results also placed the Screamin’ Eagle®/Vance & Hines teammates in the same pairing for the first round of eliminations on Sunday. Hines prevailed over Krawiec, 6.913 seconds to 6.983 seconds. In the second round, Hines fouled at the starting line to hand the win to Sovereign-Star Racing Buell rider Michael Ray.
“That red light was all on me, a mental issue in my routine at the line that will be easy to correct,” said Hines.
With four weeks off before the next NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle event, the Harley-Davidson® Screamin’ Eagle®/Vance & Hines team will engage in a ramped-up test program of the new V-Rod drag bikes, which were completed to meet new NHRA rules just before the start of the season.
“We keep learning about the new motorcycle and the new engine,” said Krawiec, the defending Pro Stock Motorcycle champion. “We’ve seen the tuning we did on the dyno start to come through at races. Now we are going hit the track hard for testing during this break, and come back ready to race at Englishtown.”
After three rounds of Pro Stock Motorcycle competition in 2013 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, Arana Jr. leads the class with 375 points, followed by Pollacheck with 256 points and Viper Motorcycle Company Buell rider John Hall in third place with 187 points. Krawiec and Lucas Oil Buell rider Hector Arana Sr. are tied for fourth place with 174 points. Hines is in seventh place with 144 points.
The Pro Stock Motorcycles will next race at the 44th annual Toyota NHRA Summernationals, May 30-June 2, at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park in Englishtown, N.J.