Vance & Hines/Mission Suzuki team ends 2022 NHRA Pro Stock Moto season with top qualifying spot in Pomona
Angelle Sampey sets new Pro Stock motorcycle track record at
Auto Club Raceway
BREA, Calif. – Nov. 14, 2022 – (Motor Sports NewsWire) – Flaunting the speed that has made them a season-long championship contender, the Vance & Hines/Mission Suzuki Pro Stock Motorcycle team has lifted the curtain on the 2022 NHRA season with his seventh number one qualifying performance of the year, but was unable to make it past the second round of eliminations at the NHRA Auto Club Finals at Auto Club Raceway in Pomona, Calif. sunday.
With a total of 13 Pro Stock Motorcycle Championships and over 150 NHRA National event wins between riders Angelle Sampey and Eddie Krawiec and crew chief Andrew Hines, himself a six-time rider’s champion, the team Vance & Hines/Mission Suzuki brought decades of winning experience to the starting line in its first season under Suzuki sponsorship. The team entered the season with high expectations, but struggled to deliver consistent results in an up-and-down season, picking up just one win during the campaign. The team have already set their eyes on the second year of the relationship with renewed expectations.
Consistently owning the fastest bike on the field, Sampey took the top qualifying spot on his Suzuki Hayabusa for the sixth time in 15 races this year. His burst of 6.703 seconds / 201.61 mph on Friday reset the Pro Stock Motorcycle track record at legendary Auto Club Raceway, which has hosted the NHRA Finals since 1984. It was the 59th best qualifying performance for the triple class champion, who with 46 career wins is the winningest runner in NHRA history.
Angelle Sampey (2) ends the 2022 season with her 59th qualifying spot and sets a new track record at Pomona.
Sampey got a free run in the first round of eliminations against non-starting Katie Justice, running a 6.829 seconds / 192.17 mph pass to advance automatically. But in a repeat of the start-line woes that plagued her for much of the season, Sampey lost on lap two on a red-light fault despite running 6.732 seconds / 202.18 mph that would easily have covered the 7.126 seconds / Race at 152.80 mph.
“I had the best bike on the circuit all year, and for some reason, which was my fault pretty much all the time, I didn’t win more races. very disappointing end to the season. I was hoping to turn things around and finish the last race on a high. I had the bike to do it again,” said Sampey, whose season highlight was the team’s only win at the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals in Norwalk, Ohio, in June “I don’t know what’s happened to me mentally for the last half of the season, but there’s nothing I can do about it. change it now. I am very grateful for the opportunity given to me to ride such an incredible machine. My team is amazing. They did a great job and I couldn’t be more proud of them. I just wish I could give them a better performance. I’m glad I got number one qualifying and a win, but it should have been so much more and it’s all my fault. As for next year, I don’t know what’s going to happen yet, so I can’t really comment on that.
Compounding the team’s disappointment at Pomona, Eddie Krawiec suffered a series of frustrating electrical issues during qualifying which resulted in his first failure to qualify for an NHRA national event since the 2007 season. disappointing for the four-time Pro Stock Motorcycle champion, who was the top qualifier at the Norwalk race but failed to win a race for the first time since 2009.
After a difficult 2022 season, Eddie Krawiec (4) is putting this season behind him and remains optimistic for the 2023 season.
“My bike picked up an electric gremlin and we struggled all weekend trying to find it. By the fourth qualifying session we had changed all the electrical parts on the bike and even changed the motors. was a struggle and it wasn’t for lack of effort, but I’m ending the season on a low note. It’s the first time in 15 years that I haven’t raced on Sunday. But we’ll work things out, test in the winter off-season and be more determined than ever to come back and fight for a championship,” said Krawiec, who looked to the 2023 season with optimism. “Overall, this race does not reflect the overall season that I had, which was good. It’s been a year of generating data and better understanding how the bike rides. We didn’t expect to set the world on fire, but we expected to be a little better. Next year will be very innovative for the Suzuki teams, and it’s great to have contributed to that. So I’m excited to come back and race for the championship.
Crew chief Andrew Hines put the tough race weekend behind him and looked forward to spending the offseason focusing on new research and development projects that will advance the performance of the Vance & Hines Suzuki program to a even higher level.
“We fell into a bad spot here at Pomona, but we showed we can be strong up front. Seven number one qualifiers is no small feat. Our performance is better at the end of the season than she wasn’t at first,” Hines said. “This year I’ve learned a lot by being out of the seat, where I need to focus my efforts and that’s made me a better all-around team leader. I’m excited for what the future holds for Suzuki and Vance & Hines. We’re going to come out strong and fast and make sure those Hayabusas are ahead of the pack again.
At the end of the 2022 NHRA season, Sampey and Krawiec finished sixth and seventh in the final 2022 Pro Stock Motorcycle Championship standings with 2,353 and 2,306 points, respectively.
The Vance & Hines/Mission Suzuki team will return to competition in 2023 when the Pro Stock Motorcycle class opens its season March 9-12 at the Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals at Gainesville Raceway in Gainesville, Florida.
For the latest Suzuki Team news, race reports and information, visit SuzukiCycles.com/Racing/Drag-Racing.
Suzuki Motor USA, LLC. (SMO) distributes motorcycles, ATVs, scooters, auto parts, accessories, and ECSTAR oils and chemicals through an extensive dealer network in 49 states. Suzuki Motor Corporation (SMC), based in Hamamatsu, Japan, is a diversified global manufacturer of motorcycles, ATVs, scooters, automobiles, outboard motors and related products. Founded in 1909 and incorporated in 1920, SMC has business relationships with 201 countries/regions. For more information, visit www.suzukicycles.com.
About Vance & Hines
The Vance & Hines brand has always been about enhancing the exhilaration of motorcycle riding. It all started over 40 years ago when Terry Vance and Byron Hines were two young enthusiasts of the burgeoning Southern California motorcycle racing scene. Terry always wanted to go faster and Byron knew how to make it happen. Before long, their track success and innovation caught the attention of other racers, riders and motorcycle manufacturers, which ultimately translated into commercial demand for their products and services. Today, the mission and activity of the Society are the same; make bikes go faster on the race track and leverage those learnings to create impactful products for riders everywhere. Since the company’s inception in 1979, it has run factory racing programs in partnership with Suzuki, Yamaha, Ducati and Harley-Davidson in drag racing, road racing and flat track. Vance & Hines is based in Santa Fe Springs CA and has its Racing Development Center in Brownsburg IN. To learn more about the company’s history and products, visit www.vanceandhines.com.
Source: Suzuki Motor USA, LLC