Arana opens Pro Stock Motorcycle season with world record run
GAINESVILLE, Fla. (March 11) -- Hector Arana posted a 6.777-second pass at 195.36 mph Friday in the opening round of the 42nd annual Tire Kingdom NHRA Gatornationals to set a world record for Pro Stock Motorcycles.
Arana came into this weekend's race focused on the professional debut of his son, Hector Jr., who is riding a second Lucas Oil Buell V-Twin that's a mirror image of his father's ride. But by the end of the day the spotlight was on the 2009 series champion, who immediately backed up his 6.777-second run with a 6.790 at 196.10 mph to make his previous run an official record.
"I didn't spend much time on my bike in the off-season because I wanted to make sure Hector Jr.'s bike was perfect," Arana said. "I just gave my bike a big hug and said, 'Be good to me baby.' Today, she was very good to me.
"I actually felt like I had missed the tune up. It felt slow, so it was unbelievable when they told me I had run a 6.77. I was very surprised and happy. Thanks to (Pro Stock teammate) Larry Morgan for his continued help with our engines."
Prior to his second run, Arana was brought back to earth when he watched his son scrap the retaining wall near the finish line. Fortunately, aside from some damage to his racing boot, Arana Jr. was unhurt and will continue qualifying action Saturday.
"Over the winter I made sure to set him up with good boots and an extra layer of leather," Arana said. "That goes to show you that anything can happen. I talked to him, I prepared him, but you never know what can happen.
"I don’t know if he is letting the pressure get to him, but it sure is getting to me. I checked on him and he seems to be okay but he probably doesn’t want to hear what I have to say. He is going to realize now that it isn’t as easy as it seems. I always tell new riders to respect the motorcycle; it talks to you, feel it."
Saturday's qualifying action concludes with two sessions at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. ET at Gainesville Raceway. Qualifying highlights will air Saturday night on ESPN2.
-source: lucas oil racing