Ed Krawiec is now among an elite group of Pro Stock Motorcycle riders who has three or more titles: his teammate Andrew Hines, Angelle Sampey, Matt Hines and John Myers, all with three, and Dave Schultz, who leads the pack with six PSM titles. With nine wins and a dominant Harley Davidson, it was a season to remember for Krawiec.
“Yeah, this has been the dream season for sure,” said Krawiec in a recent NHRA teleconference. “Looking back, 11 finals and nine wins, for me that’s pretty much the most dominant season I’ve ever had in my career. Our Harley Davidson bikes won 15 out of 16 races this year. It definitely is exciting, and to be able to say at the end that I was the champion was great for me.”
One of those nine wins came at Krawiec’s home track, Old Bridge Township Raceway Park in Englishtown, New Jersey. Prior to his ride with Vance & Hines, Krawiec worked at the track for many years, working his way up to track manager. He counts his career complete now that he has won at Englishtown.
“I’ve quoted myself many times after that saying, no matter what, if I didn’t win the championship, my home track win is my championship,” said Krawiec. “To do it in front of all my friends, family, just fans, everybody that supports me at Englishtown meant the world to me. That’s the track that I grew up at. I started watching drag racing at the age of three, four years old. I started there, and my very first run on a Pro Stock Motorcycle was down that dragstrip. My earliest memories of everything is down that dragstrip. For me to finally get a win at the track that sort of set up my whole career was just, it was unbelievable. I mean, to be totally honest, if I was to quit riding the day after that event, I would feel content in that my career was fulfilled.”
The Harleys will have their work cut out for them in 2013, with new rule changes going into effect. Krawiec knows it will take a lot of work, but he and his team are ready for the challenge.
“Our Harleys are going from the four valve dual overhead cam engine, which is the basic exact duplicate of what comes in the factory motorcycle, the factory V Rod is a four valve dual overhead cam engine,” said Krawiec. “NHRA saw fit to change the rules to make it where all the motors sort of reflect the same the Suzuki is a two valve dual overhead cam engine; the Buell is going to be a two valve pushrod engine, as well as to make our bikes the exact same to try and equal performance and make the playing field a little more level they feel, they’re taking our engine and converting it, making us convert it from a four valve dual overhead cam to a pushrod engine. For us we’re not exactly happy with the way it went because now it has zero resemblance to the way the American side of things were for our engine. They’re just trying to make it more of the American pushrod engine. It’s going to be a lot of work with three and a half months. We’re going to have to do some reengineering and designing of the top half of the engine, and to be honest with you, right now we’re hoping to have motorcycles for Gainesville because we have nothing that we can currently throw on our bike that is NHRA legal, and that’s going to be a tough task. If we can make it to Gainesville right now, we’re going to be happy.”
Quotes in this piece provided by the NHRA.
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