While her husband Matt Smith is contending for the Full Throttle Drag Racing series Pro Stock Motorcycle championship during the final six races of the season, Angie Smith unofficially begins her quest for a berth in the 2011 top 10 Friday when NHRA’s 56th annual Mac Tools U.S. Nationals gets underway at O’Reilly Raceway Park.
“We are starting fresh again . . . just like it’s the first race of the season,” she said after finishing 13th in her first full season on the circuit. “We got in quite a bit of testing recently at Rockingham (N.C.) and we learned a lot. We went through all our motors and now we have a good baseline. I’m going to ride my new Coffman Tank Trucks bike. It has a new paint scheme and I’m really excited about racing it at Indy.
“The next six races will be like test sessions for us, but we’d really like to win a race. I want to do that and help Matthew win another championship.”
The test results and a semifinal finish at Brainerd, Minn. (Aug. 15) fortified her belief that she is capable of driving into the winner’s circle.
Angie already has some experience running interference for Matt. “I took out some of the contenders for him in 2008 and I guess I can do it again,” she said laughing. She did reach the semifinals of two Countdown to 1 races that year, defeating one top-four contender twice and another once.
Matt Smith won it all in 2007. He was third in 2008, fourth last year and he begins the Countdown to 1 from the No. 4 slot.
“My team is taking a positive approach to each race,” Angie commented. “We have a different fuel injection system and we need to put laps on it. It is something new to us.
“I’m really looking forward to racing at Indy. I know it will be a lot of fun. Racing is all I’ve ever wanted to do and I’m thankful that I have wonderful sponsors. The Klements and the Coffmans have given me a wonderful opportunity.”