SEMA eNews Vol. 14, No. 5, February 3, 2011

NHRA: NHRA Unveils its 60 Greatest Moments; Fans to Determine No. 1

NEWS NUGGETS

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NHRA UNVEILS ITS 60 GREATEST MOMENTS; FANS TO DETERMINE GREATEST MOMENT: From a simple signature March 13, 1951, by NHRA Founder Wally Parks to a championship-clinching comeback by John Force November 14, 2010, NHRA has experienced its share of great moments in its first 59 years. And as the world’s largest motorsports sanctioning body prepares to celebrate its 60th anniversary in 2011, NHRA officials have narrowed the many hundreds of memorable moments to a list of 60 Greatest Moments that was unveiled this past week. Such memories in NHRA history as Don Garlits’ debut of the rear-engine dragster in 1971, Shirley Muldowney’s groundbreaking first win by a woman in Top Fuel in 1976 and Kenny Bernstein breaking the 300-mph barrier in 1992, just to name a few, are found among the list of 60 Greatest Moments. NHRA fans can relive each of the moments via a soon-to-be-released DVD, and they can participate in a yearlong program to determine the 20, 10 and five greatest moments before ultimately identifying the moment that they believe is the greatest in NHRA history. Beginning Monday, March 7, which opens race week for the Tire Kingdom NHRA Gatornationals that will serve as the official kick-off party for NHRA’s 60th Anniversary celebration, NHRA will post each of the 60 Greatest Moments (two to three per week) on its Facebook page, and fan "likes" will be tallied to determine the 20 fan favorites. After the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals in Brainerd, the top 20 moments will be identified just as the top 10 moments will be determined at the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals presented by Lucas Oil. To see a complete list of the 60 Greatest Moments, visit NHRA.com.

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TOP FUEL PILOT DAVE GRUBNIC TO FLY ROCKY BOOTS COLORS, PRO STOCK BIKE RIDER CHIP ELLIS TO DEBUT KURYAKYN BUELL IN 2011: Kalitta Motorsports announced that Rocky Boots has returned as a primary and associate sponsor for the team for the 2011 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing season. The premium footwear and apparel maker will serve as primary sponsor on the Top Fuel dragster driven by Dave Grubnic for the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Spring Nationals in Houston; The Fram Autolite NHRA Nationals in Sonoma, California; and the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Nationals in Charlotte, North Carolina. Also announced this week was the return of Pro Stock Motorcycle rider Chip Ellis, who will team up with veteran crew chief Harry Lartigue for the 2011 season aboard the Lartigue Racing Buell, sponsored by Küryakyn, a chrome and performance accessories company. The team plans to compete at all 16 Pro Stock Motorcycle events beginning with the Tire Kingdom NHRA Gatornationals, March 10–13 at Gainesville Raceway. For more information on either of these teams, visit NHRA.com.

COMING ATTRACTIONS

KRAGEN O’REILLY AUTO PARTS NHRA WINTERNATIONALS, AUTO CLUB RACEWAY AT POMONA, February 24–27:
The 2011 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series and 60th anniversary season of NHRA kicks off at historic Auto Club Raceway in Pomona, California, at the 51st running of this event. Defending event winners include Larry Dixon (Top Fuel); John Force (Funny Car); and Mike Edwards (Pro Stock). For tickets, call 800/844-NHRA or go online at NHRATIX.com. For media credentials, please contact Director of Public Relations Michael Padian at mpadian@nhra.com.

TIRE KINGDOM NHRA GATORNATIONALS, GAINESVILLE RACEWAY, March 10–13: The second stop in the 2011 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series and first race for the Pro Stock Motorcycle class, this showdown in the swamplands of Florida will bring added excitement as the NHRA celebrates its 60th anniversary. Defending event winners include Tony Schumacher (Top Fuel); Tim Wilkerson (Funny Car); Jason Line (Pro Stock) and Eddie Krawiec (Pro Stock Motorcycle). For tickets, call 800/844-NHRA or go online at NHRATIX.com. For media credentials, please contact Senior Communications Manager Scott Smith at ssmith@nhra.com.

HE SAID, SHE SAID

60 YEARS IN NHRA HISTORY

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1965, A SNAKE IS BORN: In February 1965, NHRA Legend Don “The Snake” Prudhomme won his first of 49 NHRA National event titles at the NHRA Winternationals in the Top Fuel category. Amazingly, the entire event was run in a single day, due to inclement weather.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS

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7: Of the 12 wins he has at Auto Club Raceway at Pomona, Pro Stock legend Bob Glidden has won the season-opening Kragen O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Winternationals seven times—the most of any driver in NHRA history.

DID YOU KNOW…

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…that to help launch the 60th anniversary of the NHRA, the 51st Kragen O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Winternationals will include a special Track Walk with legendary driver Don “The Snake” Prudhomme prior to the beginning of Sunday Eliminations, as well as a special Snake Pit car show featuring Prudhomme’s historic collection of race cars that will be set up in the pits during the entire event? To get your tickets for the Kragen O’Reilly NHRA Winternationals, visit NHRATIX.com.

For more information, contact NHRA Media Relations at 626/914-4761 or visit the NHRA Media Center online.

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