SCHUMACHER ELECTRIC PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLES QUALIFY FIRST AND EIGHTH AT MID-SOUTH NATIONALS MEMPHIS, Tenn. (Sept. 26, 2008) -- Chip Ellis led the pair of Schumacher Electric Suzuki Pro Stock Motorcycles today, qualifying No. 1 for the first time...
SCHUMACHER ELECTRIC PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLES QUALIFY FIRST AND EIGHTH AT MID-SOUTH NATIONALS
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (Sept. 26, 2008) -- Chip Ellis led the pair of Schumacher Electric Suzuki Pro Stock Motorcycles today, qualifying No. 1 for the first time this season, the 13th time in his career and for the second straight year in Memphis. Craig Treble qualified No. 8 in just his fourth race riding for Don Schumacher Racing.
Ellis, riding the Schumacher Electric/XXX Racing Fuels Suzuki, roared to the top qualifying spot with an elapsed time of 6.910 seconds at 191.10 mph in the third session today. His other qualifying runs included a 6.982/186.98 (No. 1), the only six-second run of the first session, a 7.014/186.07 (No. 2) and a 7.035/186.72 (No. 1) on his final qualifying run.
Treble, on the Schumacher Electric, Albrecht's Fast Track Suzuki, recorded his quickest pass on his last qualifying attempt with a 7.014/185.74 (No. 8). His other qualifying runs included a 7.169/181.08 (No. 16) and 7.042/187.03 (No. 8) on Friday. He improved in the third round this morning with a solid 7.019/188.12 (No. 9) before running his 7.014 on his final try.
CHIP ELLIS, Schumacher Electric/XXX Racing Fuels Suzuki Pro Stock Motorcycle (No. 1): "I was pretty surprised with that 6.91 this morning," said Ellis, No. 6 in Countdown to 1 points. "Those smooth passes don't always feel fast and when I found out we ran a 6.91 I was blown away. (Crew chief) Steve Tartaglia is doing a great job with the Schumacher Electric/XXX Racing Fuels Suzuki this year and he really did an awesome job this morning. And I rode it well. That's probably the best lap I've made all year as far as doing everything exactly right and we didn't leave anything on the table on that run.
"I think right now the Pro Stock Motorcycle class is pretty even. When it's hot out our bike has struggled, but when we get some good dry air I think the class is pretty competitive and I'm not complaining about it. We have a great bike and we should have won more races than we have this season.
"As long as you get in you can win. It's that competitive out here. We were just the best bike today and I hope we'll be the best bike tomorrow. I really feel good going into eliminations.
"I've struggled with red lights this year. I think if I was going to complain about something I think the NHRA needs to change the starting-line tree so that all of us can go out and hit the tree hard. The name of the game is to go out and hit it as hard as you can, but in Pro Stock Motorcycle you can't do it. It's not just me; there are a lot of other good riders that are red-lighting. If something could be done, that would be great for our class. Who wants to see red lights? That would be my only complaint at this point. Whatever you want to call it, speeding up the tree or slowing it down, whatever it is, [they should] let us go out there and hold the clutch lever light and hit the tree as hard as you can. I think it would be a lot better racing for the fans and a lot less frustrating for us riders."
Ellis will face No. 16 qualifier GT Tonglet in round one on Sunday.
CRAIG TREBLE, Schumacher Electric/Albrecht's Fast Track Suzuki Pro Stock Motorcycle (No. 8): "As time goes on I'm getting more used to the Schumacher Electric/Albrecht's Fast Track Suzuki," said Treble, who is No. 9 in the Countdown to 1 points. "I've been trying to listen to Chip on some riding tips and how to make the bike travel better to the 60-foot mark. On that last run we ran 1.063 seconds to the 60-foot mark, which is one of my best numbers ever on any Pro Stock Motorcycle. So I'm really excited about that. He's really helping me out on my riding.
"So far this Schumacher Electric/Albrecht's Fast Track Suzuki is treating me pretty good. I'm very happy with it and as time goes on I think we're only going to get faster."
Treble will have lane choice over No. 9 qualifier Michael Phillips in round one of Sunday's eliminations.