SEMA eNews Vol. 10, No. 45, November 8, 2007

DRIFT AND DRAG—MOTORSPORTS ORGANIZERS COMBINE, EXPAND

The Formula Drift Championship capped a successful 2007 season by announcing plans to air (seven) one-hour episodes (filmed in HD) of the popular racing series on ESPN2 beginning November 15. The series will also see (seven) 30-minute “behind-the-scenes” shows broadcast on Rush HD beginning in December.

The television coverage coincides with the series expanding its 2008 schedule to include one championship event at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway in July. They also revealed plans to hold a one-of-a-kind World Championship event in November 2008, featuring drivers from Europe, Asia, Australia and North America.

Sport-compact drag racing took another step in its evolution with the announcement that the NHRA and NOPI Motorsports will join forces, with the former to sanction drag racing at NOPI events. The new series will be called NOPI Drag Racing Series sanctioned by NHRA.

"This is a logical step for sport-compact drag racing," said Gary Darcy, NHRA senior vice president of sales & marketing. "Bringing together NHRA and its 50-plus years of experience in conducting competitive drag racing events and NOPI's lifestyle activities and events results in one series that can meet the needs of all the fans, sponsors and the entire racing community."

As part of the sanctioning agreement, NOPI drag racing events held at NHRA member tracks will be conducted under NHRA rules. Competition and technical matters onsite at these events will be overseen by NHRA representatives. NHRA will declare a winner at those events and keep points toward NOPI championships in each category. At NOPI Drag Racing Series events held at non-NHRA member tracks, NHRA will not sanction nor will points be accumulated toward championships.

NOPI Motorsports and NHRA will develop classes to ensure that all cars that competed in the NHRA Xplod Drag Racing Series in 2007 will have a place to race in the NOPI Drag Racing Series sanctioned by NHRA in 2008.

"NHRA's mission is to preserve and promote the sport of drag racing," said Darcy. "Working with NOPI Motorsports on sport-compact racing is intended to further that mission."

"This is an exciting time for NOPI Motorsports and the whole NOPI family," said Mike Meyers, president, NOPI Motorsports. "We have worked extremely hard over the years to develop a strong racing series for our racers, fans and sponsors. This partnership with NHRA is going to allow us to have the best racing series ever imagined. I'm personally excited to be part of racing history, which is exactly what's happening with the NOPI Motorsports and NHRA partnership."

The 2008 schedule for the NOPI Drag Racing Series sanctioned by NHRA will be announced at a later date.

For more information, visit www.nhrasportcompact.com.

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