Joliet: Matt Smith preview

SUZUKI RIDER MATT SMITH EAGER TO GET BACK TO RACING IN CHICAGO KING , N.C. (June 2, 2009) - It's been a month since the last Pro Stock Motorcycle event of the 17 that are contested in the 2009 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series was held, and...

SUZUKI RIDER MATT SMITH EAGER TO GET BACK TO RACING IN CHICAGO

KING , N.C. (June 2, 2009) - It's been a month since the last Pro Stock Motorcycle event of the 17 that are contested in the 2009 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series was held, and Nitro Fish Ultimate Gear Suzuki rider Matt Smith is ready to get back on his mount and go for his first win of the season at the NHRA Route 66 Nationals this weekend.

Smith is currently second in the point standings, with one final round, two semifinal finishes and a season round-win record of 8-4 under his belt. He's been a frontrunner at each of the four events run so far and can taste that first victory for Don Schumacher Racing, the team he joined this season.

A test session today at O'Reilly Raceway Park in Indiana, continuing development of the Suzuki engine, and an NHRA rules change for the dominant Harley-Davidsons should help the cause.

"We're looking forward to this weekend's event in Joliet, Ill.," said Smith, the 2007 runner-up at Route 66 Raceway. "We're getting ready to test here in Indy today and try to get some things ready for Joliet.

"Route 66 Raceway is Don Schumacher's home track. He lives near Chicago and, of course, Schumacher Electric is located outside of Chicago. We're putting forth an effort to try to win this race for Don and the team, just like we do every race, but winning this one would be a little bit more special."

As for the Harleys getting 20 pounds added to them beginning at this weekend's event, "It's great," said Smith. "They needed 20 pounds on them. They might need more than that, but we'll have to wait and see what happens. They were really beating up on everybody on the back half of the quarter-mile track. It probably won't slow them down enough, but it's going to put everybody a lot closer.

"I'm so glad that NHRA finally stepped up. It's been three years since they've done anything with the Harleys. I applaud the NHRA for doing that, and I'm glad they're trying to keep the class equal with all the brands out there.

"I've been off the bike for a while, and I'm ready to get back on and go fast."

-credit: dsr

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Don Schumacher , Matt Smith