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Racing News: Best In the Desert Announces Updates to UTV Race Class and Races for 2019

Compiled by SEMA Editors

Best in the Desert has added a brand-new class—PRO R1S—for 2019.

Best In the Desert Announces Updates to UTV Race Class and Races for 2019

Best In the Desert has released news about the 2019 UTV segment of its race program for the 2019 season, including the addition of a brand-new class—PRO R1S—which will create a place for the single-seat UTVs to compete. The RS1 number designation will be R900. Also, the UTV Rally Sportsman Class will become a class of its own. The Rally Class will have a three-race series, Parker “250,” UTV World Championships and Laughlin Desert Classic Night Race. The Sportsman UTV Class will now have its own number (S900), and Pro Unlimited UTV is now open to all 2900 numbers. Pro Turbo will now be T800–999.

IHRA Adds Sportsman Class to Summit SuperSeries

Officials from the International Hot Rod Association (IHRA) have announced the addition of a Sportsman class to the IHRA Summit SuperSeries program, beginning in 2019. The Sportsman class is open to 12.00 and slower in the ¼-mile and 7.50 and slower in the ⅛-mile. The use of trans brakes, two steps and delay boxes are prohibited in this class. Sportsman racers who win Summit SuperSeries track championships or Summit Team Finals events will be invited to compete at the Summit SuperSeries World Finals October 17–19, 2019, at Memphis International Raceway for their chance to win the first-ever Sportsman National Champions and a $5,000 payout. 

Formula DRIFT Announces 2019 Schedules, New Korean Championship

Formula DRIFT President Jim Liaw has revealed the Formula DRIFT 2019 season schedules during its annual press conference at the 2018 SEMA Show in Las Vegas. The PRO and PRO2 categories will visit several tracks and road courses in 2019, including Long Beach, Orlando, Atlanta, Dallas and more. Additionally, the 2019 schedule for Formula DRIFT Japan has been announced, featuring five events over a six-month period. Also announced during the press conference was a brand-new 2019 Formula DRIFT Korea Championship. During its inaugural season, four rounds will take place at Pocheon Raceway, one hour north of Seoul. Dates for the four rounds have yet to be finalized.

Formula DRIFT 2019 Provisional Schedule:

  • Long Beach, California, April 5–6
  • Long Beach, California, Super Drift Challenge Invitational, April 12–13
  • Orlando, Florida, April 25–27
  • Atlanta, Georgia, May 9–11
  • Wall, New Jersey, June 7–8
  • Monroe, Washington, July 19–20
  • St. Louis, Missouri, August 8–10
  • Dallas, Texas, September 12–14
  • Irwindale, California, October 18–19

Formula DRIFT Japan 2019 Provisional Schedule:

  • Suzuka Twin Circuit, May 18–19
  • Ebisu Circuit, June 22–23
  • Fuji International Speedway, July 26–27
  • Okuibuki Motor Park, August 24–25
  • Okayama International Circuit, October 5–6

NHRA Unveils 2019 Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series Schedule

National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) officials have released the 2019 Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series schedule, which returns to action for an 18th year next season. The 2019 season kicks off at Orlando Speed World Dragway, in Orlando, Florida, February 1–2. The schedule also includes a new location, as the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series heads to Tucson Raceway in Tucson, Arizona, March 1–3, also returning to Atlanta Dragway, April 12–13. During the year, the series will feature doubleheader events at Texas Motorplex, Mission Raceway, Heartland Motorsports Park and Sonoma Raceway. The series will also feature two stops at Woodburn Dragstrip in Woodburn, Oregon, and The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, where the 2019 season will finish, October 31–November 3. The upcoming 2019 schedule includes 44 divisional events with a minimum of six in each of the seven divisions. There will also be 25 regional events featuring the 260-mph Top Alcohol Dragster and Top Alcohol Funny Car classes during the 2019 campaign. To view the entire  NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series for 2019, including the Northeast, Southeast, North Central, South Central, West Central, Northwest, and Pacific Divisions, visit the NHRA website.

NHRA Revises 2019 Mello Yello Series Schedule

National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) officials have announced that three dates on its 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series schedule have been changed. The final three events of the season will now take place as follows:

  • October 17–20: AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals, Dallas

  • October 31–November 3: NHRA Nevada Nationals, Las Vegas

  • November 14–17: Auto Club NHRA Finals, Pomona, California

The schedule refinement moves the AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals to take place after the NHRA Carolina Nationals in order to streamline travel across the country during the Countdown to the Championship, NHRA’s version of the playoffs. The Countdown still begins in Reading, Pennsylvania, and then travels to St. Louis. The final four events will then progress east to west, stopping in Charlotte, North Carolina; Dallas; Las Vegas; and Pomona, California. These revisions also accommodate the dates of the 2019 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, which traditionally occurs immediately following the NHRA Nevada Nationals. Having the two events in close proximity to each other allows the entire racing community to attend both events. In related news, NHRA has announced that in 2019, the Pro Stock category will compete in 18 events in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series. The class previously featured 24 races in years past.

For more racing news, visit Performance Racing Industry’s (PRI) eNewsletter.