Compiled by SEMA Editors
J. Force, S. Torrence, Glenn and Johnson Grab Wins at NGK NTK NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMax Dragway
Sixteen-time world champ John Force added another win to his legendary Funny Car career on Sunday, clinching his 152nd victory at the 11th annual NGK NTK NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMAX Dragway. Steve Torrence (Top Fuel), Dallas Glenn (Pro Stock) and Steve Johnson (Pro Stock Motorcycle) also won in their respective categories at the fourth race of the 2021 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series season.
Force wrapped up a spectacular weekend at zMAX Dragway with a run of 3.916 seconds at 328.78 mph in his 11,000-hp PEAK/BlueDEF Platinum Chevrolet Camaro SS in the final round. Force, who was also the No. 1 qualifier, went as quick as 3.897 at 330.31 on Sunday.
Torrence continued his four-wide dominance, winning for the sixth time in the last seven Top Fuel four-wide events, furthering the points lead for the reigning three-time world champ. Torrence went 3.716 at 329.10 in his 11,000-hp Capco Contractors dragster in the final round.
The Pro Stock final quad featured four young drivers going for their first career victory, and it was Glenn who came out on top, going 6.540 at 210.80 in his RAD Torque Systems Chevrolet Camaro. In his first final round appearance in just his fourth career start, Glenn gave KB Racing its fourth win in as many races to open the 2021 season. Pro Stock Motorcycle veteran Steve Johnson set a track-record 6.729 at 198.03 in the final round on his Mac Rak Suzuki.
The NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series returns to action May 21-23 with the Mopar Express Lane NHRA SpringNationals presented by Pennzoil.
IndyCar Removes Canada From 2021 Schedule
Due to ongoing COVID-19 health and safety restrictions in Ontario, Canada, organizers for the Honda Indy Toronto and the NTT IndyCar Series have jointly announced that this year’s event set for July 9–11, will no longer be a part of the 2021 schedule. IndyCar is considering various scenarios for the remainder of the 2021 calendar as it relates to the recent cancellation. The current mid-summer portion of the schedule will resume Sunday, August 8, for the inaugural Big Machine Music City Grand Prix on the streets of Nashville, with live coverage on NBCSN.
Formula 1 Adds Second Austria Race to Replace Turkey in 2021
Formula 1 has provided an update on the 2021 race calendar, with new COVID-19 travel restrictions meaning it’s no longer possible to race in Turkey on June 11–13. That weekend will now remain free, with the French Grand Prix moving a week earlier than originally planned to June 18–20, and a second race in Austria—the Styrian Grand Prix—added to the calendar on June 25–27. That creates a new France-Styria-Austria triple header, with the Austrian Grand Prix staying in its original July 2–4 slot. All tickets to the French Grand Prix are valid for the earlier date. The changes mean there continues to be 23 races planned for the 2021 season.
Texas Motor Speedway President to Step Down After All-Star Race
After more than three decades with Speedway Motorsports, including the last 25 years at Texas Motor Speedway (TMS), Eddie Gossage will step down as president of The Great American Speedway following the June 13 NASCAR All-Star Race. Gossage joined Speedway Motorsports in 1989 as the vice president of public relations at Charlotte Motor Speedway, where he worked under the guidance of Speedway Motorsports Executive Chairman Bruton Smith and then Charlotte Motor Speedway President Humpy Wheeler. Smith named Gossage general manager of Texas Motor Speedway in 1995 and added the title of TMS president in 2004. Now 62, Gossage is one of the longest-tenured employees at Speedway Motorsports.
Details Announced for 2022 Dakar in Saudi Arabia
Details have been released about the 44th edition of the Dakar Rally, which will run on January 2–14, 2022, during its third visit to Saudi Arabia. The rally will start in Ha'il and finish in Jeddah, after a rest day in Riyadh. The 2022 edition will mark the starting point for plans to host a field of cars powered by alternative energies or electric power by 2030. The new T1-E category, which launches in 2022 and will be dedicated for prototype vehicles engaged in carbon emission research, aligns with this plan. Related, the popularity of vintage vehicles in the “Dakar Classic” regularity race has encouraged many enthusiasts of ’80s and ’90s 4x4s to have a go in the adventure, and officials say the field could double in size at the start in Ha'il. Registration opens May 17. For more information, visit here or dakar.com.
100% Signs Ken Block as Its Newest Visionary
100% has signed Ken Block as its latest visionary, joining a roster of athletes representing the brand. As an entrepreneur, in 1994 Block founded DC Shoes and in 2010, the clothing and media company Hoonigan. As a car driver, the Gymkhana franchise has racked up close to 700 million views to complement his decorated career as a rally car racer.
NHRA Reschedules Winternationals, Cancels Northwest Nationals
NHRA and Auto Club Raceway have announced July 30–August 1 as the rescheduled date of the 61st annual Lucas Oil NHRA Winternationals presented by ProtectTheHarvest.com. The Lucas Oil NHRA Winternationals, which traditionally kicks off the NHRA season, was postponed due to state health guidelines in California. NHRA and the track have worked closely with state and local officials to find a new date for the event and are confident that the new date will allow more fans to attend the famed race.
Related, NHRA and Pacific Raceways in Kent, Washington, have come to the decision to cancel the 2021 Flav-R-Pac NHRA Northwest Nationals. Though Washington State recently announced a lessening of its COVID-19 restrictions, there is still uncertainty about what rules could impact the event.
The Winternationals will take the original slotted date of the Northwest Nationals and now conclude the annual NHRA Western Swing, a three-race series from Denver to Sonoma and finally to Auto Club Raceway at Pomona, California.
For more racing news, visit Performance Racing Industry’s (PRI) website.