Smith leads final Friday PSM qualifying at 2019 Auto Club Finals

By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher

Denso/Matt Smith Racing Pro Stock Motorcycle rider Matt Smith is the provisional No. 1 qualifier in his category on Friday at the final 2019 NHRA race of the season. He went 6.815 at 197.33 mph at the Auto Club NHRA Finals at Auto Club Raceway at Pomona in Pomona, California.

If his time holds up during the final two qualifying passes on Saturday, it’ll be his seventh No. 1 qualifier of the season. In addition, it’ll be his 38th No. 1 qualifier of his career.

Denso/Matt Smith Racing Pro Stock Motorcycle rider Matt Smith racing on Friday at the Auto Club NHRA Finals
Matt Smith racing on Friday at the Auto Club NHRA Finals (Photo by the NHRA)

“Our Q1 run felt good,” Smith said. “The track is a little green but it will get better and my Denso bike is pretty hateful. We made a good run in the first round and on the second run it blew the rear tire off. I guess we were too aggressive. We’ve got something for them this weekend, though. We got to second place after the first run and that was our first goal. Like I said, the championship is a long shot and I really can’t worry about that [points leader] Andrew Hines is doing.

“We won this race last year and we want to duplicate that same scenario. If Andrew loses in the first round, we want to be able to capitalize on it. If I can’t be first I want to be second.”

White Alligator Racing Pro Stock Motorcycle rider Karen Stoffer is the provisional No. 2 qualifier. The Gardnerville, Nevada native went 6.834 at 195.00 mph.

Her White Alligator Racing teammate — and team owner — Jerry Savoie is the provisional No. 3 qualifier in what could be his final PSM race in his career. The Cut Off, Louisiana native went 6.837 at 193.35 mph.

Screamin’ Eagle Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson Pro Stock Motorcycle rider Andrew Hines is the No. 4 qualifier. The Avon, Indiana native went 6.845 at 196.22 mph.

Lucas Oil TV sponsored Pro Stock Motorcycle rider Hector Arana Jr. is the provisional No. 5 qualifier. The East Northport, New York native went 6.867 at 196.36 mph.

The rest of the provisional ladder looks like this:

6. Scotty Pollacheck, EBR, 6.873, 196.39 mph

7. Angelle Sampey, Harley-Davidson, 6.882, 194.02 mph

8. Eddie Krawiec, Harley-Davidson, 6.894, 195.22 mph

9. Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 6.897, 193.74 mph

10. Hector Arana, EBR, 6.913, 196.47 mph

11. Ryan Oehler, EBR, 6.937, 196.64 mph

12. Angie Smith, EBR, 7.010, 194.13 mph

13. Kelly Clontz, Suzuki, 7.010, 191.78

14. Michael Ray, Victory, 7.023, 191.02 mph

15. Katie Sullivan, Suzuki, 7.043, 189.28 mph

16. Freddie Camarena, Suzuki, 7.061, 189.76 mph

Not Qualified:

17. Jianna Salinas, 7.842, 125.79 mph

18. Andie Rawlings, 9.463, 93.70 mph

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