Columbus: Valvoline/Eagle One preview

Valvoline/Eagle One Pontiac Excitement Nationals National Trail Raceway, Hebron, Ohio June 14-16 Race 11 of the 23-event NHRA POWERade Series All NHRA races televised by ESPN/ESPN2 Pro Stock: Krisher 4th for Home State Race Ron Krisher...

Valvoline/Eagle One
Pontiac Excitement Nationals
National Trail Raceway, Hebron, Ohio
June 14-16
Race 11 of the 23-event NHRA POWERade Series
All NHRA races televised by ESPN/ESPN2

Pro Stock: Krisher 4th for Home State Race

Ron Krisher resides in Warren, Ohio, so he considers National Trail Raceway to be his "home" track on the NHRA POWERade tour. Krisher holds the track ET record in Pro Stock, at 6.905 seconds, set two years ago. Krisher opened this season with four consecutive Pro Stock poles, won at Las Vegas, and made the final round at Bristol in his Eagle One Chevrolet Cavalier. He's currently fourth in Pro Stock points.

Krisher has now qualified for an impressive 57 consecutive Pro Stock events, going back to the year 2000 season-opener at Pomona. Pro Stock may well be the most competitive racing series in the world, with between 34-37 cars typically trying for the 16 qualifying positions. Krisher was one of only four drivers to qualify for all 24 NHRA events in 2001.

Krisher owns his own drag racing engine development company, KRJ, located in Newark, Ohio. His company supplies engines to Pro Stock competitors Tom Hammonds and V. Gaines. Before entering Pro Stock, Krisher raced sports cars on road courses and sprint cars on dirt, and he's a self-made entrepreneur.

Krisher on trying to maintain consistent performance throughout the season: "You hit flat spots. You're going along and you're gaining and then you'll hit a spot like we did last summer. We spent from May through November not finding anything (performance gains). When we came back from Pomona, we had a new set of heads and a new concept and some new ideas. We took the motor out of the car that we ran at Pomona, put it on the dyno, then took the heads and intake off of it and the camshaft out of it, put the new idea on it, and it was amazing. We got going in a direction, and kept trying to make it work, but then you've got to come up with a new concept."

Top Fuel: Amato Still Owns Track ET Record

Joe Amato, owner of the Valvoline-backed Bilstein English Flush dragster driven by Darrell Russell, still holds the National Trail Racway ET record of 4.572 seconds set in 1998. Amato, who retired after the year 2000 season with a record five Top Fuel championships and 52 victories, won in Columbus in 1989 and was runner-up to Tony Schumacher in his final appearance. Russell, who beat Top Fuel leader Larry Dixon at Topeka on Memorial Day weekend, was runner-up to Dixon here last season. The win, the first of the season and third of Russell's career, moved the 2001 NHRA Rookie of the Year up to sixth in points. This comes after a difficult start to the season. In Las Vegas, he started working with new crew chief Wayne Dupuy and an essentially all-new crew.

Continuing one of the most successful partnerships in modern motor racing, Valvoline returns in 2002 for the 19th season as a sponsor of Joe Amato's Top Fuel team. From 1984 through his retirement after the 2000 campaign, Valvoline's technical, product and financial support helped Amato to five Top Fuel championships and 52 victories, both NHRA records. Darrell Russell added to the record in 2001, with two wins, and NHRA Rookie of the Year honors in Amato's dragster. Bilstein Engine Flush is Amato Racing's new primary sponsor.

Pro Stock Motorcycle: Hines Has 2 Wins at National

Three-time Pro Stock Motorcycle champion Matt Hines is a two-time bike winner at National Trail Raceway. He rode his Eagle One Suzuki to victory in both 1997 and 1998. He's currently fifth in points.

-v/eo-

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Series NHRA
Drivers Matt Hines , Larry Dixon , Tony Schumacher , Joe Amato , Ron Krisher , Tom Hammonds