Compiled by SEMA Editors
MASSEY EXCITED FOR BUSY STRETCH STARTING AT BRISTOL DRAGWAY: After back-to-back victories in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, Spencer Massey suffered a first-round loss at the most recent event in Englishtown. But to hear the ever-optimistic Top Fuel standout talk, he may be as thrilled to get back in his 10,000-hp Battery Extender by Schumacher Electric dragster as he has been at any point in 2014.
"I’m definitely excited to get back out there because I feel like we have our race car back," Massey said. "The car is moving in the right direction. We need to be running strong and need to be consistently in the 3.70s, and after Englishtown, I feel like we have a car and motor that can make that power. Hopefully, we can go back to the final round in Bristol and maybe even win it this year."
FORCE REFLECTS ON 100TH VICTORY, SETS SIGHTS ON CHAMPIONSHIP: Growing up around the sport and having a legendary driver for a father, Courtney Force knew all about the history of females succeeding in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series and what was on the line as she faced off with Funny Car veteran Cruz Pedregon in the final round at Topeka, May 25. But as she prepared to make her own historic moment in earning the milestone 100th NHRA victory by a female, Force could not help but think back to her childhood.
"As a kid growing up watching my dad (John Force) race, his biggest competitor out there was Cruz Pedregon," Courtney Force said. "They both had good cars and they were both great drivers. I kind of felt like I was a part of history, always watching him race my dad. Then to have me in the lane next to him, all of my childhood was flashing before my eyes. Cruz is one of the toughest guys out there and luckily we were able to get that win."
TWO PROMOTED IN NHRA RACING OPERATIONS: The NHRA announced two key promotions in racing operations, including one to a newly created safety role. Bob Lang has been promoted to senior director, safety and emergency services, and will continue to direct the Safety Safari presented by AAA—NHRA’s world-renowned safety team responsible for emergency response and track preparation at NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series events. His duties will expand to the corporate level where he will be directly involved with safety initiatives. Dave Mohn has been promoted to division director of the NHRA’s northeast division where he previously served as assistant division director under Lang.
He Said, She Said
"I just remember how hard we all worked for the two weeks before that race. We went and tested up there for three days, and that gave us a bit of an advantage over the guys who didn't test. But we weren't the only ones to test, and we had to go and do it on race day. I've told this story a lot, too, but the radio plug came out of my helmet before the final against Erica, and I didn't know I'd won until I turned the corner at the top end. It was that close."
—Rodger Brogdon on defeating Erica Enders-Stevens in the Pro Stock finals in Bristol in 2013. It was his first career Pro Stock victory and his second final-round appearance.
Inside the Numbers
5: Number of career Top Fuel wins seven-time world champion Tony Schumacher has at Bristol Dragway. His five wins lead the 10,000-hp Top Fuel category at the facility, as well as all the categories, and his most recent Thunder Valley victory came in 2012 when he defeated Doug Kalitta to end a winless drought that dated back to 2010. This season Schumacher has one win, Las Vegas 1, and currently finds himself seventh in the points standings.
Did You Know
CLASSIC CARS, QUARTER-MILE DRAG RACING AT HOLLEY NATIONAL HOT ROD REUNION: The NHRA Motorsports Museum Holley National Hot Rod Reunion presented by AAA Insurance returns to scenic Beech Bend Raceway Park, June 12–14, for the 12th annual event and will again feature the finest nostalgia racing and custom cars from across the country. The Kentucky Travel Industry Association (KTIA) recently selected the National Hot Rod Reunion as one of its 2014 Summer Top 10 Festivals & Events. Criteria for selection include the popularity of the event, its impact on the local tourism economy and the event’s cultural and historical significance.