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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: NHRA Communications (626) 914-4761 PRO STOCK BIKE CHAMP HINES WILL TRY TO FINISH SEASON IN WINNING FORM POMONA, Calif. -- Matt Hines' normal routine will change a bit the night after the Winston Finals at...

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: NHRA Communications (626) 914-4761

PRO STOCK BIKE CHAMP HINES WILL TRY TO FINISH SEASON IN WINNING FORM

POMONA, Calif. -- Matt Hines' normal routine will change a bit the night after the Winston Finals at Pomona Raceway.

Dressing in a tuxedo, picking up a Winston champion's check for $30,000 and making a speech before hundreds of his peers doesn't exactly constitute a normal night for Hines, 25.

But Hines hopes he doesn't stray from his routine during the 33rd annual, $1,466,600 Winston Finals, Nov. 6-9. It's the final race of the $30-million NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series in 1997.

"I've already started writing the speech," Hines said. "But we're going to go to the race and try to win."

No Pro Stock Motorcycle rider has done that better this year.

Hines, who recently moved from Whittier, Calif., to Trinidad, Colo., has won seven of 13 Pro Stock Motorcycle races this season on the Vance & Hines Suzuki GSXR. He clinched his first NHRA Winston title at the Pennzoil Nationals presented by AutoZone in early October at Memphis, Tenn.

The big move toward the championship started in late April for Hines. He won the Pennzoil Nationals presented by Trak Auto in Richmond, Va., setting an NHRA elapsed-time national record and taking the points' lead for good. He followed with a victory at the Mopar Parts Nationals in mid-May at Englishtown, N.J., lowering his national record to 7.290 seconds.

He never relented from that pace, winning four of six races from June to mid-September.

"At Englishtown, when I came back and reset the record, qualified No. 1 and had a tenth of a second on the field, that gave me lots of confidence," Hines said. "Confidence is everything."

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Series NHRA
Drivers Matt Hines