SCREAMIN' EAGLE TEAM ANXIOUS TO GET BACK TO RACING; MAKING WAY TO ATLANTA DRAGWAY FOR ROUND THREE Hines and Krawiec Look to Go Rounds MILWAUKEE (April 23, 2007) -- Sometimes a break between NHRA POWERade drag racing events can be a great thing.
SCREAMIN' EAGLE TEAM ANXIOUS TO GET BACK TO RACING; MAKING WAY TO
ATLANTA DRAGWAY FOR ROUND THREE
Hines and Krawiec Look to Go Rounds
MILWAUKEE (April 23, 2007) -- Sometimes a break between NHRA POWERade drag racing events can be a great thing. But sometimes it can make racers even more anxious to get back out to the track.
Andrew Hines and Eddie Krawiec know the team can always use time between races to prepare the Screamin' Eagle/Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson V-Rod entries, but they are more than ready for this break to be over.
The factory riders each posted first round losses at the Houston event on April 1 and have wanted to get back on the bike ever since. Their first chance will be Friday's qualifying for the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals, April 26-29, at Atlanta Dragway in Commerce, Ga. It is the third of 16 national events featuring the Pro Stock Motorcycles.
"I'm so anxious to get back out there that I wish Atlanta would have been the very next weekend," Hines said. "But that's just a racer's nature. You can ask every rider in the pits and they would have all said the same thing. We just want to race. Our team has taken advantage of the break and it's given us time to work on building new bikes that we can use later in the season. It's been nice to be able to focus on those but it will be better to get back out to the track."
Hines, the three-time defending NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle champion, was the runner-up at Atlanta Dragway in 2006 and was the No. 1 qualifier in 2005. Hines may be coming off an uncharacteristic two consecutive first round losses, but he also knows the V-Rod is capable of winning at any time.
"We've had success at Atlanta Dragway in the past and I ran decent there last year, but I just got beat in the final," Hines said. "I have an awesome bike right now. It showed some life in Houston and we've figured out some tuning aspects that will help us develop a more consistent baseline throughout the season. I want to get to Atlanta and go rounds."
Krawiec earned a semifinal appearance at the season opener in Gainesville Fla., before turning in the first round loss in Houston. He said there was more pressure at the second race of the season than there was in his first event as the newest member of the Screamin' Eagle racing program.
"I don't mind a two-week break, but three weeks seems like forever," Krawiec said. "My plan is to just go out there, keep my head on straight and make some nice, clean, consistent qualifying passes. I learned a lot from Gainesville and Houston. There was actually more pressure in Houston because we just sat around in the rain and I think I over thought everything. But I'm still learning and that's an experience I won't forget."
Harley-Davidson Racing Manager Anne Paluso said the team is ready to have three consecutive days of racing.
"We never want to have any session canceled because of rain like we had in Houston, but it is vital to have as many passes as possible early in the season because we're still learning and making adjustments," Paluso said. "We're looking forward to going to Atlanta and having three great days of racing. Our racers want seat time."
While Krawiec has yet to qualify for an event at Atlanta Dragway, he has been there before. He just chooses to block that last appearance out.
"The last time I was there I had a new bike and it caught fire at the finish line," Krawiec said. "It was a horrible experience and I haven't been back to that track since. I'm looking forward to going there with a new bike, a great team behind me and just getting past that.
"Something I have already learned is how important it is to treat every run the same. It doesn't matter if you are qualifying or who you are racing in what round. You have to stay focused and block everything else out on every pass. I'm ready to get to Atlanta and prove that I can do just that."
Qualifying will start Friday with two sessions at 3:30 and 6:30 p.m., continuing Saturday at 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Final eliminations will begin at 11 a.m. on Sunday.