Lucas Oil teammates have similar goals -- win rounds in Phoenix
PHOENIX (Oct. 15) – His son has two victories this season, but now Lucas Oil Buell rider Hector Arana Sr. wants a Pro Stock Motorcycle trophy of his own.
Arana Sr. qualified No. 2 for the Arizona NHRA Nationals at Firebird International Raceway and is looking for his first victory of the season.
"My intention is to win," Arana Sr. said Saturday evening. "I'm planning to win. I'm not planning to go one round, two rounds. I need my own trophy, one of those pewter trophies. I haven't gotten one. We've worked hard and we deserve one."
Lucas Oil Ford Mustang driver Larry Morgan qualified No. 9 in Pro Stock and hopes to continue his recent improvement in Sunday's eliminations.
Hector Arana Jr. has garnered much of the attention in Pro Stock Motorcycle recently, qualifying No. 1 for three races in a row and winning the most recent race in Reading, Pa.
But Arana Sr. has been pretty good, too, qualifying fourth in Charlotte and third in Dallas and Reading. He went 6.937 seconds at 194.52 mph to qualify second in Phoenix and will face No. 15 qualifier Matt Guidera in the first round of eliminations. Guidera's best pass was 7.099 seconds at 187.13 mph.
"I'm pleased with the performance," Arana Sr. said. "We worked hard last week that we had off. We freshened everything up to make sure that everything's taken care of. I am pleased with the performance. I qualified 2, and Hector qualified No. 1. Really, that's the outcome that I wanted.
"I wish I could've been No. 2 and Hector No. 1 on each run so we could gain those little points because they mean a lot. Other than that, I'm pleased."
The Pro Stock Motorcycles raced in Phoenix for the first time, and Arana Sr. was happy with the track and the elapsed times run here.
"This place surprised me, because of the heat and everything, that we were able to turn some numbers out there," Arana Sr. said. "The starting line was awesome, and the track felt great. The shutdown area, it was OK until you passed the first turn-off, and then it was really something else."
Morgan made four solid passes in qualifying, getting quicker in the first three runs until a minor staging error in Q4 slowed him slightly. Morgan's best pass was 6.662 seconds at 207.34 mph, and he'll face No. 8 qualifier Vincent Nobile in the first round Sunday. Nobile qualified with a run of 6.658 seconds at 208.33 mph.
"We've run good for the whole weekend so far," Morgan said. "We've improved in the first three runs, and that means we're getting more consistent. We're pretty excited about that. All we need to do is make some good runs tomorrow, and we'll be fine."
In the final qualifying session, Morgan accidentally went in too deep, yet still made a run of 6.685 seconds at 207.18 mph.
"We had an issue when I staged," Morgan said. "I went in and turned both bulbs on. Stanfield noticed, so he wanted to get in there in case he was too late. I'm trying to back up as he's pulling forward. I had to punch it back in gear, and I probably was too deep."