PSM – ST. LOUIS
Seemingly outgunned against the top-ranked rider in Pro Stock Motorcycle, reigning world champ Eddie Krawiec, Joey Gladstone upset his heavily favored opponent, who threw it away with the most aggravating possible red-light – -.001. “I was squatting behind the beams,” said Gladstone’s boss, Team Liberty leader Cory Reed. “They left, and I never noticed the red-light in the other lane. I watched them go down the track, and thought, ‘Dammit, we lost,’ until somebody yelled, ‘Wait, Krawiec red-lighted!’ ”
Gladstone was outqualified by nine positions – No. 4 to No. 13 – but that figure is a little misleading. He was right there in the 6.80s with Krawiec, seven-hundredths of a second back, 6.82 to 6.89. Those exact same numbers popped up on the scoreboard in the first round – 6.82 for Krawiec and 6.89 for Gladstone – but the win-light shone on Gladstone’s side of the track due to Krawiec’s untimely foul.
“The bike is running better now because of Joey’s weight – 135 pounds,” Reed said. “I’m 150 – in this class, that almost makes you a fat guy. It’s funny the different emotions you feel watching someone else on your bike, but it really doesn’t bother me that much. It’s all about making the next step ’cause I’m tired of getting my ass kicked. He keeps making good passes, and we keep learning more than if I was on there. The way the clutch works, way the tire hits, way the wheelie bar works – when he’s on there, the weight transfer is how it should be. With me on it, it’s all wrong – everything works right one time and the next time it doesn’t, and we never know why. The new bike will be like 40 pounds lighter and we’ll be able to move the weight around where we want it.”