As good as Hector Arana Jr. was Friday, he was even better Saturday.
Arana Jr. maintained the Pro Stock Motorcycle pole position with a track record time of 6.809 seconds Saturday at the NHRA Midwest Nationals at Gateway Motorsports Park outside of St. Louis.
“The conditions were great,” Arana Jr. said. “We were just able to tune to the conditions from (Friday night) to (Saturday morning) they were pretty close. We were able to make adjustments and as you guys saw the adjustments we made worked out and we ran better.”
This was Arana Jr.’s third pole of the season and the 10th of his career.
“You are always hoping you are going to run better, but I was really surprised we ran that fast,” said Arana Jr. about his track record run Saturday.
Eddie Krawiec and Andrew Hines, the Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson riders had won 13 races in a row dating back to Las Vegas in 2011 before having that string broke by Michael Ray last Sunday in Dallas.
Krawiec and Hines qualified third and fourth right behind Arana Jr. and his father, Hector Arana Sr., who is in the No. 2 position.
Prior to the Dallas event, NHRA announced a minimum weight increase of 10 pounds for the Harley-Davidson riders Krawiec and Hines. Beginning at Dallas, the minimum weight for Harley-Davidson motorcycles was 670 pounds.
Harley-Davidsons now weigh 55 pounds more than a Buell and 75 pounds more than a Suzuki.
“I’m sure they have a strategy for what they are doing,” Arana Jr., said about the Vance & Hines team. “We will see what happens (Sunday).”
Arana Jr., arrived in St. Louis 79 points behind Krawiec for the points lead and 68 in back of Hines. He also hasn’t won since the Phoenix race in 2011, but he is hoping to change that trend Sunday.
“The outlook looks good,” Arana Jr., said. “The bike has been very consistent and I have been riding well. I just have to go out there and do it. I’m just looking forward to living in the present instead of looking back at the past.”
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