GEICO rider Karen Stoffer reaches Denver semis - 7/22/2012
Rob Geiger - Geiger Media

DENVER (July 22) - GEICO Suzuki rider Karen Stoffer had another solid day at Bandimere Speedway, reaching the semifinals of the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals on Sunday.

The result moved Stoffer up one position to fifth in the Pro Stock Motorcycle points standings with three races remaining before the Countdown to the Championship.

"The mountain's been good to us," Stoffer said. "Hopefully, it's given us a little momentum. We've turned things around. We moved up a spot in the points, which is nice, and it'll be nice to get back to Sonoma."

Stoffer, who won in 2011 and reached the finals here two years in a row, beat Matt Smith in the first round and Matt Guidera in the second before falling to Harley-Davidson's Andrew Hines in the semifinals.

"It's definitely a better weekend than we had thought about when we came into Sunday morning," said Stoffer, who qualified No. 10. "We had a bracket bike out there: No matter what we did to it, it ran a 7.35, a 7.35, a 7.35. We thought we were stuck in the .35s.

"But this mor

Stoffer won in the first round when Smith red-lighted, but she still made the fourth-quickest pass of the round, going 7.263 seconds at 181.59 mph.

In the second round, Stoffer made a pass of 7.370 seconds at 180.31 mph to take out Guidera, who went 7.486 at 177.44 mph.

Then, in the semis, Stoffer had a less-than-stellar reaction time of .176 seconds before running 7.318 seconds at 180.33 mph, losing to Hines' lap of 7.270 seconds at 182.90 mph.

"I'm a little bummed about my performance in the semifinal round," Stoffer said of her light. "I had a .002, .008 and then a negative-.002 in that right lane. It was kind of a close one for me, so what I did is I squeezed the clutch, and I squeezed it extra-hard, harder than I should've. It really made it look a lot worse than that it would've been had I left at a normal pace."

Still, Stoffer leaves Denver with a smile on her face.

"The bike still ran good," Stoffer said. "We looked at the video, and, yeah, we were three (hundredths) off a Harley, but for our GEICO Suzuki to only be three off of a Harley, that's saying something for us. I'm glad we could even run near the same ETs because they've won every race and have been dominant out there."

Stoffer went on to extend special thanks to all of the 2012 sponsors and supporters.
Geico Powersports 1-800-442-9253, Suzuki Extended Protetion, Bates Leathers, KYMCOUSA, NGK, Airtech, Red Line Oil, American Racing Products, Mechanix Wear Gloves, and TKO Graphics.