St. Louis: Friday quaifying report

SMITH PACES PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE; RAIN, HIGH HUMIDITY END FRIDAY QUALIFYING EARLY IN ST. LOUIS MADISON, Ill. -- Constant rain and high humidity forced an early end to qualifying action at the 11th annual O'Reilly NHRA Midwest Nationals presented...

SMITH PACES PRO STOCK MOTORCYCLE; RAIN, HIGH HUMIDITY END FRIDAY QUALIFYING EARLY IN ST. LOUIS

MADISON, Ill. -- Constant rain and high humidity forced an early end to qualifying action at the 11th annual O'Reilly NHRA Midwest Nationals presented by Castrol at Gateway International Raceway on Friday, but not before Matt Smith posted a six-second pass to pace the Pro Stock Motorcycle field.

Smith recorded a track-record setting 6.970-second run at 188.96 mph on his Torco Race Fuels Buell to lead the two-wheel category. Pro Stock completed a partial round with former NBA star Tom Hammonds leading the pack, while Top Fuel and Funny Car were unable to make any runs down the St. Louis-area quartermile. Qualifying continues with two rounds scheduled for Saturday.

"If you're only gonna get one chance, you might as well go to the top," Smith said. "The track was green and slick and I'd imagine we could have been at least one hundredth of a second quicker if there was some rubber out there but I'm still happy and I'd expect a 6.97 will hold up just fine.

"We're gonna put the motor we blew up in Atlanta last weekend back in there for tomorrow's two rounds and see how it runs. Some times when you fix a motor that blew up like that one did it's never quite the same. We need to find out if it's good or not because you need a strong back-up piece to run in this class."

-credit: nhra

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Tom Hammonds , Matthew Smith