Reading Pro Bike notebook

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: NHRA Communications (626) 914-4761 PIONEER ELECTRONICS KEYSTONE NATIONALS PRO STOCK BIKE NOTEBOOK *One year ago: Angelle Seeling captured the attention of the motorsports world one year ago when she won the...

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: NHRA Communications (626) 914-4761 PIONEER ELECTRONICS KEYSTONE NATIONALS PRO STOCK BIKE NOTEBOOK *One year ago: Angelle Seeling captured the attention of the motorsports world one year ago when she won the Pro Stock Motorcycle title at the Pioneer Electronics Keystone Nationals, becoming the first female rider to win an NHRA national event. Seeling's victory was even more remarkable because it came in just the fourth national event of her career. She was runner-up two weeks later to her teammate, John Myers, at the Sears Craftsman Nationals in Topeka, Kan. Seeling, 5-foot-1, 105 pounds, hasn't appeared in a final round since. She has advanced to the semifinals four times this season and is fifth in the NHRA Winston point standings on the Close Call Phone Card Suzuki GSXR. *Record pace: The NHRA elapsed-time national record has been set in Pro Stock Motorcycle at this event every year since 1993, an unparalleled record of two-wheel performance in the NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series. A look back: *1996: Angelle Seeling, 7.373 seconds. *1995: John Myers, 7.467 seconds. *1994: Dave Schultz, 7.532 seconds. *1993: Dave Schultz, 7.598 seconds. Schultz also became the first rider in NHRA history to break 180 mph with a 181.85 speed in 1993 at this event. "I think we adapt as fast as any other team because we've got 100 years of experience," Schultz said. "I think that's why we may do a little bit better at Reading because it's the first time after running all the summer doldrums that you start to get back with a lot of horsepower again." *Mirror image: For the second consecutive year, John Myers beat Matt Hines in the final of the U.S. Nationals when Hines left the starting line too soon on the Vance & Hines Suzuki GSXR. Hines also had the performance advantage for the second straight year. He finished at 7.439 seconds, 174.75 this year. Myers finished at 7.500, 175.71. *Power play: John Myers pulled to within 196 points of leader Matt Hines after beating Hines in the final of the U.S. Nationals. Hines' lead remains large with just four Pro Stock Motorcycle races remaining, but second-place Myers thinks added horsepower for his Close Call Phone Card Suzuki GSXR can help his quest to catch Hines. "If we can get enough power to really start dominating, we can catch him," Myers said. "We're not giving up. You can never get too comfortable in this sport." *Pressure stays on: The Pioneer Electronics Keystone Nationals is a laid-back event for many Pro Stock Motorcycle riders, considering it comes one race after the pressure-filled U.S. Nationals and The Wax Shop Pro Bike Dash special event at Indianapolis. But the pressure continues for Dave Schultz at this event. His primary sponsor, Sunoco, is based in Philadelphia, just one hour from Reading. Schultz thinks there might be even more pressure at Reading than Indy this year because he is an uncharacteristic third in the NHRA Winston point standings on the Sunoco Suzuki GSXR. "If had a better season to this point, then it would be just another race," Schultz said. "But because our season has struggled this year, it makes more pressure when we go to Reading just because it's Sunoco country." *Only elite emerge: It's essential that a rider qualify in the top four to win a Pro Stock Motorcycle title at an NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series national event this season. Winners have emerged only from the top four qualifying positions at all 10 events including Pro Stock Motorcycle this season. In fact, nine of the 10 winners have come from the top three spots. John Smith won the Sears Craftsman Nationals near St. Louis after qualifying fourth. *Performance prediction: A rider might need the quickest time in NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle history to qualify No. 1 for this event, Dave Schultz said. The quickest time ever is an NHRA-record 7.290 seconds, set by Matt Hines at the Mopar Parts Nationals in May 1997 at Englishtown, N.J., the last time the NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series stopped on the East Coast. Schultz and crew chief Greg Cope have devised a new engine that they think will help them dip into the 7.20-second range for the first time. Schultz's career-best time is 7.321. "We're not going to be the No. 1 qualifier unless we run in the 7.20's," Schultz said. "I'm not going to predict a number, but the package that Greg has right now, we should run in the 20's. But we haven't been there and done that yet." *Schedule: Pro qualifying starts at 3 p.m. Sept. 12 and continues at 7 p.m. that evening. Qualifying ends with sessions at noon and 4 p.m. Sept. 13. Final eliminations start at 11 a.m. Sept. 14. Federal-Mogul competition starts at 8:30 a.m. Sept. 11. *Tickets: Tickets are available for the Pioneer Electronics Keystone Nationals. Call Maple Grove Raceway at (610) 856-7200. *On TV: TNN will televise 90 minutes of live, final-round competition from the Pioneer Electronics Keystone Nationals at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) Sept. 14. TNN also will televise one hour of live, first-round competition at 11 a.m. (EDT) Sept. 14. *On the Web: The NHRA home page on the World Wide Web at http://www.goracing.com/nhra/ offers more information about NHRA Winston Drag Racing, including qualifying and eliminations results, news, point standings, statistics and driver biographies. -30- 9/4/97-RP5-142

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Series NHRA
Drivers Matt Hines