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2014 NHRA: Lucas Oil Veteran Arana Sr Goes Old-School For Gatornationals
Posted by: newsla on Mar 16, 2014 - 07:11 AM
2014 NHRA: Lucas Oil Veteran Arana Sr Goes Old-School For Gatornationals

Lucas Oil Pro Stock Motorcycle rider Hector Arana Sr. just laughs when he's told his official start to the season was Saturday at the NHRA Gatornationals this weekend at Auto-Plus Raceway at Gainesville.


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That's because Friday was basically a lost day, as transmission problems aborted one run and kept the veteran from even attempting a pass in Q2. But Saturday was much better, and Arana qualified No. 9 with a pass of 6.868 seconds at 195.22 mph.

"It's been really stressful, but I finally made a good run," Arana said. "We still haven't turned everything around because we have two runs with no data on the clutch, on the rest of the engine."

Arana admitted he will have to make a bit of a stab in the dark for the first round of eliminations on Sunday, when he'll face No. 8 qualifier Scotty Pollacheck (6.858 seconds at 195.36 mph), but the 25-year veteran has plenty of experience upon which to lean.

"I'm just going to have to go tune by the seat of my pants and hope everything goes well for tomorrow," Arana said. "It's old-school, but it's a good thing I started that way, and I can still remember some things."

Arana's weekend started with a 9.994-second pass that he had to abort well before the finish line.

"The bike would not shift into third, so we took it apart and changed some parts on it," Arana said. "We just didn't get it done on time for the second run."

For Q3, Arana made a run of 6.991 seconds at 193.10 mph that was slower than he wanted -- by necessity.

"This is a different motor we put in, so we didn't know what the motor liked," Arana said. "I played it conservative, gave it more fuel and less timing so we didn't hurt the motor. We needed to make a clean pass and we did."

He tuned the Buell up for Q4, when he made his best run of the weekend.

"Now I need to look at some of the data I have," Arana said, "and from the seat of my pants make a good call for tomorrow."

Final eliminations for the NHRA Gatornationals start at noon on Sunday. ESPN2 will air the qualifying show at 1 a.m. EDT on Sunday and the eliminations show at 7 p.m.

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