HINES CLAIMS $25,000 IN BONUS RACE AT 2007 MAC TOOLS U.S. NATIONALS IN INDIANAPOLIS Krawiec and Hines Stumble in Eliminations INDIANAPOLIS (Sept. 3, 2007) -- Andrew Hines and the Screamin' Eagle/Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson team won the...
HINES CLAIMS $25,000 IN BONUS RACE AT 2007 MAC TOOLS U.S. NATIONALS IN INDIANAPOLIS
Krawiec and Hines Stumble in Eliminations
INDIANAPOLIS (Sept. 3, 2007) -- Andrew Hines and the Screamin' Eagle/Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson team won the Ringer's Gloves Pro Bike Battle for the third time in five appearances.
The bonus race is held annually at the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals at O'Reilly Raceway Park at Indianapolis.
Hines beat Chip Ellis in the final of the bonus event on Saturday en route to a $25,000 payday for the win. Hines recorded a 7.005-second pass at 189.31 on his Harley-Davidson V-Rod to beat Ellis' 7.069 at 186.64 on his Drag Specialties S&S Buell.
Unfortunately, Hines didn't manage to double-up this season by winning the U.S. Nationals main event. Hines beat teammate Eddie Krawiec in the first round of final eliminations on Monday but came up short in a second round matchup against Craig Treble and the Team Tigue Suzuki group.
Hines ran a 6.974 at 191.39 to beat Krawiec's 7.067 at 187.44 in the first round. Hines fouled out in the second round against Treble.
"My team did a great job and they kept me competitive all weekend," Hines said. "The second round loss didn't have anything to do with the motorcycle or anything else. I just made a mistake. But the team worked hard and it was a good weekend overall."
Hines said the bonus race is more fun because there isn't any pressure associated with it -- there aren't any NHRA POWERade points connected to it either.
"We've had a lot of good success in that bonus race over the years," Hines said. "My brother (crew chief Matt Hines) won it four times and (former teammate) GT Tonglet won it once too. We try not to do anything special for the bonus event. We just race.
"There isn't any pressure with the Ringer's Gloves battle. There aren't any points involved, just cash and that takes all of the pressure off the team. It's just fun. But we have to try and win it again next year so we can try and earn the double-up bonus from NHRA."
Even though Krawiec lost in the first round, it was still a big weekend for the newest member of the Screamin' Eagle team. This was the first time Krawiec had qualified for the longest-running NHRA national event.
"That was a big plus for me, qualifying for the U.S. Nationals for the first time," Krawiec said. "We struggled a bit throughout the weekend and unfortunately our struggles carried over into the first round. The pairings were tough because you never want to race your teammate, especially in the opening round. But we have four more races this season and we have a lot of rounds left to race so we just have to move on."
Starting this year, NHRA has developed a playoff format for all professional categories. The top eight competitors in each category advanced to the second round starting with the U.S. Nationals. The Pro Stock Motorcycle category has two more chances to get into the top four -- the third and final round of the Countdown.
The third round of the Countdown will feature the top four riders and they will have two events (Las Vegas and Pomona, Calif.) to win the 2007 NHRA POWERade Pro Stock Motorcycle championship.
"We're still in the hunt for a Countdown spot," Krawiec said. "I think this team is going to rebound and do just fine in Memphis in two weeks. We're going to be even stronger having gone through a tough weekend like this one."
The next NHRA POWERade event featuring the Pro Stock Motorcycle category is the 20th annual O'Reilly Mid-South Nationals at Memphis Motorsports Park, Sept. 14-16.