Brainerd: Hector Arana preview

Arana looking to lock up top spot in Pro Stock Motorcycle BRAINERD, Minn. (Aug. 11) -- Although Hector Arana has his ticket to the NHRA playoffs in hand, the defending Pro Stock Motorcycle world champion knows he still has some work to do at...

Arana looking to lock up top spot in Pro Stock Motorcycle

BRAINERD, Minn. (Aug. 11) -- Although Hector Arana has his ticket to the NHRA playoffs in hand, the defending Pro Stock Motorcycle world champion knows he still has some work to do at this weekend's 29th annual Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals.

Arana currently holds the Full Throttle points lead, worth a 30-point advantage when the Countdown to 1 playoffs begin. At the moment, he's up on second place rider Andrew Hines by 60 markers, or three rounds of elimination action, which gives him the edge on securing the No. 1 spot in the Countdown field. But he's yet to win a race this year, and he knows he's got to use some of his track time this weekend prepare his Lucas Oil Buell for the Countdown run.

"I'm going through the whole motor so we can defend our title the best we can," Arana said. "We're still working hard so we don't have any mishaps when the playoffs start."

Arana said his battle plan for this weekend is to get a solid elapsed time number on the board early, then fine tune, and possibly test a bit, from there.

"The Lucas Oil Buell has been running great; we just have to be consistent on the clutch," Arana said. "Once we do that, we'll be all right. We're still going to try to get every point we can.

"If we get a couple of good hits Friday, we might try something different on Saturday, but the first thing on my mind is to get a good, clean run in the books. That will go a long way towards finishing the regular season in the No. 1 position."

Aside from defending his 2009 world title, Arana also is the defending champion of the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals, which is one of his favorite races on the schedule.

"I love the atmosphere in Brainerd," he said. "When we're done for the day we get to go to 'The Zoo' and relax a little bit with the fans. Then it all starts over again the next day. It's like a racing vacation.

"Mr. and Mrs. Lucas will be there so it's important to show them our best side. Last year was great because we won and then a few minutes later Morgan (Lucas) won in Top Fuel, so the winner's circle was really fun. Maybe we can do it again this time."

-source: lucas oil racing

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Series NHRA
Drivers Andrew Hines