Krawiec the one to beat


Published: Wednesday, March 13, 2013 at 7:25 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, March 13, 2013 at 7:25 p.m.

Previewing The Gator: Two-time defending season points champion Ed Krawiec is predicting he's not going to be much of a factor early in the season because he's breaking in a new Screamin Eagle/Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson. Here's one sure thing about that: His fellow competitors aren't going to believe it for a second heading into this weekend's Gator. In a highly competitive class, Krawiec is clearly the guy to beat in whatever NHRA race he's entered. In only six full-time seasons in NHRA, he's already piled up 20 victories and has won the season championship three times. He's the defending Gator champion and going for his third consecutive season championship in 2013. Of course, if his new ride is not where he wants it to be this weekend, there are plenty of riders capable of stepping up and winning the Gator, including teammate Andrew Hines, who has won Gatornationals twice (1998 and 2001) and has 31 career wins. Another name to keep an eye on is Arana — Hector Arana and his son Hector Arana Jr. The older Arana set the ET record in Gainesville in 2011 and won the points championship in 2009, the same year he won Gatornationals. He has four career wins. His son was the rookie of the year in 2011, when he won three races. He followed up by finishing fourth in the season standings in 2012.

Facts

Last year

Gatornationals reigning champion

Ed Krawiec (6.822 seconds elapsed time, 197.94 miles per hour) defeated Andrew Hines (6.861 ET, 194.55 mph) in the final.

Track records

ET: 6.750 seconds by Krawiec in 2012

MPH: 199.26 by Krawiec in 2012

National records

ET: 6.728 seconds by Hines in 2012 in Reading, Pa.

MPH: 199.26 by Krawiec in 2012 in Gainesville

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