Best of the PSM Rest at the US Nationals

If you’re looking for info about LE Tonglet and White Alligator Racing’s Pro Stock Motorcycle win at the NHRA’s US Nationals, you’ll find that HERE. For overall coverage of eliminations (cars and bikes) look HERE. But for everybody else in the PSM field, read on:

Andrew Hines had a long and remarkably quiet weekend at Indy. Hines qualified 6th and lost to teammate Eddie Krawiec in round 2. Hines is second points….could he end up a winless champion??

Hector Arana Jr led qualifying at one point.
Despite beating Eddie Krawiec on the tree and running 198.7 mph, Arana Jr’s EBR got out-ET’ed by the Harley. He is fourth in the Countdown behind Hines, Eddie Krawiec and LE Tonglet

Eddie Krawiec debuted Mello Yello livery on his Harley and carried it to the runner-up position—surely a disappointment for the 4X champ.
#1 qualifier Matt Smith was bit in round 1 by the same severe bog that put him out in Brainerd. Matt is 6th in the Countdown behind Jerry Savoie.
Steve Nichols was thrilled to have helped tune Smith to that #1 qualifier.

Angelle Sampey squeaked into the Indy field on her final attempt, and into the Countdown in the last spot. Her future at Liberty Racing is now apparently dependent on sponsor funding. More on that later right here on
Angie Smith was not so smiley after failing to make the Indy field when the transmission broke on her last attempt. “It shouldn’t have come down to that,” Angie said, still tearful hours later. She was relieved to make the Countdown in 9th spot as eliminations played out without her.
After a bit of a dramatic start to the season, Steve Johnson made the Countdown in 8th spot. He qualified 9th at Indy and raced well to the semis, where he took the tree but lost to eventual winner Tonglet.
Jimmy Underdahl is a rock solid competitor but came up just short of making the Countdown in 11th. He benefitted from Matt Smith’s bog in E1 before falling to Steve Johnson in round 2.

Chip Ellis reunited with Blake Ritter on the third Vance & Hines Harley. Chip qualified 4th and lost second round to eventual winner LE Tonglet. He was expected to race the bike through the Countdown to the Championship but is not on the Maple Grove entry list. (correction: Mike Mullaney pointed out to me that the V&H press release listed Chip’s races as St. Louis, Dallas, Vegas and Pomona)
Joey Gladstone made his maiden voyage on one of Liberty Racing’s S&S Gen2 Buells. Gladstone qualified 10th and lost to fellow former Pro Street racer Mark Paquette in round 1, finishing 13th in the standings. I’ll have LOTS more about Gladstone’s partnership with Liberty soon.
Getting used to Joey Gladstone on a Liberty Buell was easy, getting used to his haircut will take time.
Hector Arana Sr. got bumped out of the Countdown at Indy, finishing 12th in points. He qualified 8th and lost round 1 to Steve Johnson.
I spent a great Sunday night hanging in Ryan Oehler’s trailer, drinking 130 proof Jack Daniels with Ryan’s family and team. Flyin’ Ryan qualified 12th and lost to Tonglet in round 1, finishing 14th in points. Like many, he’ll continue to race through the Countdown races despite not being IN the Countdown. Here he is with lovely new bride Laura.

Mark Paquette had another great outing at Indy, qualifying 7th and coming up short against Hector Jr. in E2 despite a .004 light.
Despite not having the rookie season she’d hoped for, Kelly Clontz’s attitude remains strong. She’ll get the hang of it!
Lewis Bloom knows who The Man is
These Indiana fans love them some JR Todd
Yeah, not PSM but a cool shot of a cool guy in a cool car—Mike Castellana in the Al-Anabi Performance, Frank Manzo-tuned Camaro
Leah Pritchett in the Papa John’s DSR Top Fuel dragster. This car was “John Schnatter Camaro gold” previously. It’s now “Italian flag green” as the company erases as many references to it’s founder as it can, as quickly as it can. I had a good talk with DSR COO Mike Lewis. Their contract with Papa John’s is multiyear—so safe from being cancelled now that Schnatter doesn’t get to play race car driver. The restaurant chain is also still on board with the series of charity races with DSR drivers at NHRA events. “We’ll continue to represent the company and franchise owners as best we can,” said Lewis.

Trevor Eman and John DeFlorian, two of the Mountain Motor Pro Stock exhibitors. These cars would add numbers to Pro Stock Car fields, but no additional excitement
PR hound Nicole Clark Erickson sitting down on the job

story and photos by Tim Hailey

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