Mike Phillips wins Dallas!

Michael Phillips, shown here in Indy, ran his mouth well in Charlotte and his Suzuki very well in Dallas!

story and photos by Tim Hailey

Using his typical top end charge, Michael Phillips drove around number 1 qualifier Hector Arana Jr to win his first race in 4 finals this year. Phillips also raced around Jerry Savoie’s ’08 ‘Busa in the semi, crossing the finishline over 6 mph faster than his fellow Louisianan. Both Phillips and Savoie got a lot of airtime last week on ESPN2, trashing the V-Rods and their pilots. The two trailered the V-Rods in round 2 (see below), helping make this year’s Countdown one to watch ’til the bitter Pomona end.

NHRA Dallas results

Louisiana Gators bite back hard in Dallas

Jerry Savoie, shown here in the Indy final, nailed a .002 on nemesis Andrew Hines in Dallas

The pelican state of Louisiana hit back hard at the Vance&Hines Screamin’ Eagles, with Cut-Off alligator farmer Jerry Savoie and Baton Rouge career racer Michael Phillips trailering both bikes in round 2 at Dallas. Savoie slapped a .002 light on Andrew Hines for a back breaking holeshot win. He’ll have lane choice over Phillips in the semi. Mike, likewise, won with a huge (.019 to .080) holeshot over Eddie Krawiec.

Polesitter Hector Arana Jr beat champion LE Tonglet but lost lane choice to Matt Smith, who won handily over Karen Stoffer’s .443 light…and no, I’m not using the old numbering system here, you’re reading that right. I think Matt looked over his shoulder and was tempted to roll off the throttle to keep from breaking out…

Arana Jr on pole in Dallas

Hector Arana Jr recovered from a bad Friday to qualify #1 on Saturday

After frustrating early round losses last week at Charlotte and a slow Friday qualifying in Dallas, the Arana family regrouped well on Saturday to take pole (Hector Jr) and number 3 (Hector Sr) in Pro Stoclk Motorcycle qualifying for the AAA Texas NHRA Fall Nationals. Jr ran a 6.828 at 196.02 mph and Sr a 6.850 at 196.62 to show that the Lucas Oil Buells are dialed in pretty close. Squeezed between them like the pork in a Cuban (or Puerto Rican) sandwich is Friday leader Andrew Hines. Matt Smith is fourth and Karen Stoffer the firts Suzuki in fifth. Jimmy Underdahl just made the bump with Bailey Whitaker, David Hope, Justin Finley, Joey DeSantis and GT Tonglet failing to make the cut.

“Later Alligator,” says qualifying leader Hines

Andrew Hines and the Vance&Hines crew fight back with T-shirts and a track record ET of 6.859

The fresh meat being thrown around the Pro Stock Motorcycle pits continues at Dallas, with the Vance&Hines/Screamin’ Eagle Harley-Davidson team showing up with “See You Later Alligator” T-shirts. That refers, of course, to the White Alligator Racing team of Jerry Savoie, who lost in round 1 last week at Charlotte. Savoie’s builder/tuner Mark Peiser was all smiles about the trash talking this week at the WAR shop in Brownsburg, Indiana—two doors down from Eatmyink world headquarters and right across the street from V&H. The word at the time was that Savoie was preparing some T-shirts of his own, but Peiser was too busy for such shenanigans, and too busy to make another video like this one that got Eddie Krawiec so bent out of shape: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tQ9GquQ7mY8

Butv the V-Rods are mostly doing their talking on the track, where Peiser and many contend they have a built-in performance advantage. Hines and Krawiec are 1-2 after the first two rounds of qualifying for the AAA Texas NHRA Fall Nationals, followed by the Buell of Matt Smith, Suzuki of Karen Stoffer, and Buell of Chip Ellis. Savoie is 11th, and David Hope 16th. Steve Johnson once again wakes up Saturday outside of the top 16 (yeah I know everybody behind #12 LE Tonglet is unualified but I tend to ignore new rules).