Compiled by SEMA Editors
Hagan, S. Torrence and M. Smith Win at Dodge//SRT Mile-High NHRA Nationals Presented by Pennzoil to Kick Off Western Swing
Defending world champ Matt Hagan finally picked up his first career victory at Bandimere Speedway, powering to the Funny Car win on Sunday at the Dodge//SRT Mile-High NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil. Steve Torrence (Top Fuel) and Matt Smith (Pro Stock Motorcycle) also won in their respective categories at the eighth race of the 2021 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series season, as all three defending world champs kicked off the famed three-race NHRA Western Swing with victories. Hagan went 4.105 seconds at 305.70 mph in his Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye to beat Alexis DeJoria in the final round.
Top Fuel’s Torrence ended Joey Haas’ upset bid by going 3.860 at 320.36 in the final round in his 11,000-hp Capco Contractors dragster. In Pro Stock Motorcycle, Smith went 7.118 at 189.04 on his Denso Auto Parts/Stockseth/Matt Smith Racing EBR to beat Eddie Krawiec in the final round. The NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series returns to action next weekend with the NHRA Sonoma Nationals at Sonoma Raceway.
Milan Dragway for Sale, Will Not Host Races in 2021
Milan Dragway, the 136-acre motorsports facility featuring a 1/4-mile NHRA-sanctioned drag strip in Michigan, is for sale. The facility has been placed in receivership, and a Monroe County Circuit Court judge has appointed David Findling, a Royal Oak lawyer, to find a buyer and go through a judicial review to close the deal. Findling has reported several interested buyers—including an unnamed drag race team owner—all from within the automotive and racing community. He expects the sale to be finalized sometime this year, according to CKIW Radio. Due to needed track maintenance, however, racing likely won’t return to Milan until the 2022 season. For the latest information, visit www.facebook.com/MilanDragway/.
MAHLE Motorsport Announces NMRA/NMCA Travel Voucher Program
MAHLE Motorsport in support of NMRA and NMCA racing has announced a new Inflation Fighting Travel Voucher program to help offset the rising cost of fuel for five lucky racers. Five vouchers valued at $500 each will be given away over the course of the next three events. To qualify, racers must purchase tickets in advance on the FOAT website to qualify.
The first drawing for two $500 vouchers will take place at the inaugural NMRA/NMCA Power Festival, held July 22–25, at US 131 Motorsports Park; one voucher will go to a competitor in the NMRA event and one in the NMCA event. The next two voucher drawings will take place at the final two NMCA events—the 20th Annual NMCA All American Nationals at Summit Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio, in August and the annual NMCA World Street Final at the Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis in September. The final voucher drawing will take place at the NMRA World Finals, September 27.
MAHLE Motorsport and NMRA/NMCA officials will randomly select the winners with the first drawing occurring on or before July 18 with the announcement on July 19 for the Arrington Performance NMRA/NMCA Power Festival. For the NMCA events—NMCA All American Nationals (August 26–29) and NMCA World Street Finals (September 23–26), drawings must be pre-entered by August 22 and September 19 respectively.
Any NMRA/NMCA racer who has purchased a four-day, three-day, or two-day racer ticket on the FOAT Ticketing website to the participating events mentioned above will be eligible to win the MAHLE Motorsport $500 Inflation Fighter Travel Voucher. For NMRA racers this includes NMRA Racer Entry, True Street Racer, or Bracket Open Race Entry. For NMCA racers this includes True Street Racer, COPO, Cobra Jet Racer, or Bracket Open Race entry. A $500 check will be issued to the winner at the Registration Trailer at each event. The winner must be present to claim their prize.
For more information and advance tickets to the Arrington Performance NMRA/NMCA Power Festival Presented by Force Engineering at US 131 Motorsport Park, visit www.NMCAdigital.com/MI and information and tickets for the NMCA All-American Nationals at Summit Motorsport Park, visit www.NMCAdigital.com/OH. More information and advance ticket link for the NMCA World Street Finals Presented by Chevrolet Performance can be found at www.NMCAdigital.com/IN.
Mississippi Raceway Park Set to Open in 2023
Gerard Hansen, an automotive historian and motorsports professional, has announced a new motorsports facility based in Petal, Mississippi, just outside of Hattiesburg. The primary purpose for building the new facility is to develop “tomorrow’s racing champions,” track officials stated. Mississippi Raceway Park will feature several race tracks, including the first 5/8-mile paved asphalt oval in the state, a 1/4-mile drag strip, three road course configurations, a kart track and a soapbox derby course modeled after the Derby Downs in Akron, Ohio. The facility will also offer professional race car driving instruction for drag, oval, road and kart divisions, in addition to daily driver education for all ages. Plans include seating for up to 40,000 fans, hospitality suites, on-track condos, and an RV campground. For more information, visit www.facebook.com/MississippiRacewayPark/.
Skip Barber Racing School Introduces Karting Academy
Skip Barber Racing School, the racing and driving school based in North America, will open its first indoor go-karting academy out of a 40,000-sq.-ft. karting facility at American Dream, the 3-million-sq.-ft. entertainment, retail and dining destination near New York City. Guests will test their racing abilities at the Skip Barber Racing Go-Kart Academy while overlooking the Manhattan skyline. For more information, visit skipbarber.com.
Houston Raceway Park to Close After 2022
Houston Raceway Park, the 1/4-mile dragstrip in Bayton, Texas, will close following the 2022 race season. The 35th annual Mopar Express Lane NHRA SpringNationals presented by Pennzoil, set for April 22–24, will serve as the final event for the Houston-area track. Immediately following the event, the new property owners will repurpose the drag-racing complex into an industrial business park. For more information, houstonraceway.com.
New Sprint Car Series at Perris Postponed Until 2022
The Pace RUSH Sprint Car Series—scheduled to launch in the West Coast region at Perris Auto Speedway—has been postponed until 2022. According to longtime Perris Auto Speedway promoter Don Kazarian, the postponement is due to the impact of the pandemic and vendor supply issues. The RUSH Sprint Cars Series was launched in 2018 as a “cost containment” non-wing division featuring the Chevrolet Performance RUSH 602 sealed crate engine by Pace Performance. RUSH directors Vicki Emig and Mike Leone plan to visit Southern California in November to meet with prospective promoters and participants interested in the new series. For more information, visit facebook.com/rushsprintcars.
NXG Youth Motorsports Expands Support of STEM Education
NXG Youth Motorsports Academy has announced a partnership with the School of Engineering and Technology at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) to provide opportunities for underrepresented students in STEM. The School of Engineering and Technology at IUPUI will offer scholarships—contingent upon acceptance and enrollment into any academic program offered by the school—to participants of NXG Youth Motorsports Academy. The motorsports engineering program at IUPUI offers students an engineering degree in the heart of the racing capital of the world with a blend of engineering curriculum plus vehicle dynamics, aerodynamics, data acquisition and other motorsports-specific courses. For more information, visit nxgyouth.org and et.iupui.edu.
For more racing news, visit Performance Racing Industry’s (PRI) website.