Top Dragster, Top Sportsman to compete for NHRA national championships in 2015

NHchuckhawkjrRA’s Top Dragster and Top Sportsman classes will compete for NHRA national championships beginning in 2015. Both season champions will be awarded with NHRA National Champion’s Wally trophies along with National Championship rings and jackets.

The two classes will be contested at 14 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series national events across the country, as well as the three NHRA JEGS SPORTSnationals events and at all NHRA Lucas Drag Racing Series divisional events. To earn NHRA National Championships, drivers in both classes will count their best three of their first five national events, and their best five of their first eight divisional events. The JEGS SPORTSnationals events will be counted as national events, with competitors earning national event points.

The six-second, 200-mph race cars featured in both classes have continued to increase in popularity and participation. The addition of three new events in 2015 will include the Route 66 NHRA Nationals which also plays host to the JEGS Allstars.

“We’ve seen the two categories grow since 2002 with the introduction of Top Sportsman and 2005 with Top Dragster,” said Josh Peterson, NHRA Vice President of Racing Administration. “Recognizing an NHRA National Champion in Top Sportsman and Top Dragster is the next step as interest by racers, sponsors and fans continues to grow.”

Class field sizes will not change as a 32-car field will be contested at all national events, including the three JEGS SPORTSnationals, and at Lucas Oil divisional events in divisions 1-5. Divisions 6 and 7 will continue to contest 48-car fields with the final Lucas Oil divisional event of the year held at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway hosting a 64-car field.

Round Two of the Western Conference Wraps Up in Fontana

FONTANA, Calif. (January 18, 2015) The U.S. Majors Tour championship races are firmly underway in the Western Conference after the opening weekend wrapped on Sunday from Auto Club Speedway.
Seven race groups ran on the 21-turn, 2.8-mile circuit that uses both the infield road course and a large part of the oval superspeedway for the second time over the weekend, with Sunday’s races each stretching for 18 laps.

In action at Auto Club Speedway:

Group 1: It was a repeat of winners for most of the opening race group, beginning with Robert Green’s No. 92 Bullet Performance BMW 325 sneaking away from another battle with Carl Young’s No. 23 Tom Lepper & Associates Chevrolet Cobalt. Unlike Saturday’s race where he battled from behind, Green held on out front for the distance and the win.

Paul Whiting swept the Super Touring Lite weekend with a new track record of 1:55.937 in the No. 51 Next Victory Honda CRX, with Derrick Ambrose’ No. 71 CorkSport Mazda Performance/Monarch Inspections/BFG Mazda2 claiming two trophies in B-Spec. Anthony Lanza’s No. 15 Lanza & Smith Lotus Exige and Christopher Qualls’ No. 73 Hasa Chemical Ford Mustang took Touring 2 and Touring 3, respectively.

Philip Royle took advantage of mechanical misfortune from Saturday winner Tom Wickersham and then a stumble by Tao Takaoka’s No. 03 Mazda RX-8, moving around Takaoka on the penultimate lap to take the Touring 4 win. Royle’s No. 09 Honda/BFGoodrich Tires Honda Civic was still a street car just a month ago.

Group 2: Spec Racer Ford began similarly to Saturday, with just the No. 69 Team Widget SRF of Denny Fosdick and the No. 90 East Anglia Motorsports SRF of Jack Wille battling back and forth early. But that fight allowed the No. 49 Flat Out Racing SRF of Marty Williams to sneak up on the pair and influence the action.

Williams moved into second, splitting the pair, while alternator trouble had Willes convinced he was relegated to third. Coming under the white flag, however, Williams relaxed slightly after misinterpreting it as the checkered flag. At the same time, Willes car came back to life, and he closed quickly to Fosdick on the banking.

In a repeat of Saturday, Willes moved around Fosdick just into the infield. That gap and full power was all he needed, hanging on for the final lap and taking his second win of the weekend.

TJ Acker’s No. 62 MBI Racing SRF worked with the No. 11 MBI Racing SRF of Mike Miserendino to sneak away from the No. 24 Pro Drive Racing SRF of Saturday winner Todd Harris in the quicker Spec Racer Ford Gen3 class.

Harris hung close, but it was just Acker and Miserendino under the white flag. Miserendino waited until then to use the draft on the banking to move around Acker, and took the win.

Group 3: The closest class battle in the fast wings and things group was for the overall win, with two Prototype 1 cars battling it out for supremacy.

Saturday winner Timothy Day’s No. 8 TJR Motorsports Stohr WF1 swapped the lead several times with Miles Jackson’s No. 52 Jackson Dean Construction Wolf GB08MJ. Day tucked in behind Jackson’s machine on the banking to draft with fears that the car couldn’t hold enough fuel to go the distance; meanwhile, the weekend was the maiden voyage for Jackson’s machine, and came with its own set of concerns. With a lap and a half to go, however, Day went for broke and opened up, moving around Jackson and taking the win.

After pulling in early on Saturday with only second gear in his transmission, defending Formula Mazda National Champion Mike Anderson pulled back into victory circle in the No. 1 HASA/Whiteflyer Formula Mazda. With a full gear box, Anderson was virtually uncontested on his way to the win.

Gary Hickman went two for two in Formula 1000 on the weekend, setting the pace in the No. 16 Edge Engineering Phoenix. David Ferguson’s Sunday was gold medal worthy as well, taking the win in the No. 75 Veracity Racing Data Van Diemen RFS-03/Mazda.

16-year-old Yufeng Luo took his second-career Majors win in the No. 13 Dave Freitas Racing Van Diemen DP08/Ford, with Brandon Aleckson’s No. 83 Dan’s Upholstery Formula Enterprises/Ford earning his class win.

Group 4: Elliott Skeer led two laps in two races during the weekend at Auto Club Speedway, but those passes were good enough to take home two wins and the early point lead in the Western Conference Spec Miata.

Like Saturday, Skeer’s No. 17 Rush Motorsports Mazda Miata stalked Clement Lee’s No. 68 RM Autosport Miata for 17 of the 18 laps of the race. Once under the while flag, Lee kept Skeer from going around him coming off of the banking, but then the pair ran side by side for three corners before Skeer found himself on the inside and then into the lead.

Once in front, Skeer charged to the finish, leaving Lee with two second-place trophies despite leading nearly each lap of the weekend.

Group 5: The production group was full of weekend sweeps, led by Aaron Downey’s No. 5 Roundpeg.com/Mazda Mazda RX-3 racing to the overall group win in E Production. Joe Huffaker matched that feat in F Production, unchallenged in the No. 77 Huffaker Engineering MG Midget, while Jason Isley was two-for-two on the weekend in his H Production No. 99 Racer.com/Hoosier Toyota Yaris.

GT-Lite went to John Bower, in the No. 44 Nissan Sentra after post-race technical inspection.

Group 6: Attrition was the name of the game in the big bore group, with only a handful of cars running at the end. How bad was it? Even GT-3 winner Wolfgang Maike’s No. 15 Toyota/Red Line Oil Toyota Paseo broke just before he was about to take his victory lap.

Prior to that, though, Maike battled with and then drove around Michael Henderson’s No. 2 Mazda/Redline Oil/Goodyear Mazda RX-7 for the win.

Mike Lewis pulled his No. 12 Goodyear/Cyclo/Red Line Jaguar XKR off track early and out of the overall lead, but still earned the GT-1 win. Robert Kelly’s No. 66 Upracing.com Chevrolet Monte Carlo moved up both in his GT-2 class and overall as the leaders fell out, eventually taking the top spot.

Chris Qualls earned his fourth win of the weekend in the No. 73 Hasa Chemical/B&D Racing/Hoosier Ford Mustang with his American Sedan win, and Ken Davis’ No. 64 Davis Stone Inc. Chevrolet Corvette had his day ended by a blown clutch, but after covering enough distance for the win.

Group 7: One day after being taken out in an opening lap incident, Mike Lewis made sure he was clear of any trouble in Formula F by running out to a lead that grew to 13.872 seconds at the finish.

Lewis went flag-to-flag for the win, his third win of the weekend including GT-1, after crew spent a large part of the night repairing both he and teammate Bill Kephart’s cars following Saturday’s incident.

Formula Vee was a Dennis Andrade runaway on Saturday, but was a four-car battle for the lead for most of the distance on Sunday. Andrade’s No. 87 D & D Racing Vortech was joined by the Skip Streets (No. 51 Hoosier Mysterian), Mark Edwards (No. 74 Redline/Hoosier Glamdring), and Timothy Harris (No. 20 Apex Fire Systems Mysterian M3) early, but he and Streets shook free near the finish to settle it on their own.

Sheets had spent the early part of the race testing whether or not he could draft past Andrade before the finish line, and had consistently been able to pull it off. With that in mind, Sheets ran second on the final lap for the last dash to the finish.

Wondering after the race if he hadn’t been fooled by some crafty driving on Andrade’s part, Sheets’ final move fell about 12 inches – 0.018-second – shy of the win at the stripe. The win was the second of the weekend for Andrade.

The Western Conference Majors Tour continues with Rounds Three and Four at Chuckwalla Valley Raceway, March 21-22. The next U.S. Majors Tour event is a dual event for the Southeast and the Mid-States Conference at NOLA Motorsports Park, March 7-8.

More information, including results, from Auto Club Speedway is available at SCCA.com/AutoClubMajors.

FONTANA, Calif. – Provisional race winners for Sunday’s Western Conference Majors Tour Round Two at Auto Club Speedway. Drivers are listed by Class: name, hometown, and car.

American Sedan: Christopher Qualls, West Los Angeles, Calif., Ford Mustang
B-Spec: Derrick Ambrose, Vancouver, Wash., Mazda2
E Production: Aaron Downey, Rossmoor, Calif., Mazda RX-3
F Production: Joe Huffaker, Petaluma, Calif., MG Midget
H Production: Jason Isley, Coto de Caza, Calif., Toyota Yaris
Formula 1000: Gary Hickman, Santee, Calif., Phoenix F1000
Formula Continental: Yufeng Luo, Arcadia, Calif., Van Diemen RF08/Ford
Formula Enterprises: Brandon Aleckson, Watsonville, Calif., Formula Enterprises/Ford
Formula F: Michael Lewis, Poway, Calif., Vestal 09F/Honda
Formula Mazda: Mike Anderson, Anza, Calif., Formula Mazda
Formula Vee: Dennis Andrade, Buckeye, Ariz., Vortech/Volkswagen
GT-1: Michael Lewis, Poway, Calif., Jaguar XKR
GT-2: Robert Kelley, Huntington Beach, Calif., Chevrolet Monte Carlo
GT-3: Wolfgang Maike, Santa Barbara, Calif., Toyota Paseo
GT-Lite: John Bower, Granada Hills, Calif., Nissan Sentra
Prototype 1: Timothy Day, Scottsdale, Ariz., Stohr WF-1/Suzuki
Prototype 2: David Ferguson, Paso Robles, Calif., Van Diemen RFS-03/Mazda
Spec Miata: Elliott Skeer, Carlsbad, Calif., Mazda Miata
Spec Racer Ford: Jack Willes, Palm Desert, Calif., Spec Racer Ford
Spec Racer Ford Gen3: Mike Miserendino, Bakersfield, Calif., Spec Racer Ford
Super Touring Under: Robert Green, Santa Ana, Calif., BMW 325
Super Touring Lite: Paul Whiting, Las Vegas, Nev., Honda CRX
Touring 1: Ken Davis, Escondido, Calif., Chevrolet Corvette
Touring 2: Christopher Qualls, West Los Angeles, Calif, Ford Mustang
Touring 3: Anthony Lanza, Huntington Beach, Calif., Lotus Exige
Touring 4: Philip Royle, Winnetka, Calif., Honda Civic

K&N Pro Series 2015 Schedules Unveiled

Coast-To-Coast Calendar Features Nine Companion Dates

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – NASCAR announced today the 2015 schedules for its top developmental regional touring series, the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East and NASCAR K&N Pro Series West.

The coast-to-coast 2015 slate features a combined 27 dates in 17 different states, highlighted by nine NASCAR national series companion weekends and four new events.

“The NASCAR K&N Pro Series has become the premiere training ground for our sport, and the diversity of the 2015 schedules will provide great challenges for the next generation of drivers,” said George Silbermann, NASCAR vice president for regional and touring series. “We are ecstatic that Motordrome Speedway has joined the K&N Pro Series East schedule and that Meridian, Shasta and Tucson Speedways have come on board to showcase the K&N Pro Series West.”

Motordrome is a banked asphalt oval located in Smithton, Pennsylvania. The Aug. 15 event will be the half-mile’s inaugural K&N Pro Series East race, and the first visit for the series to the Keystone State since 2012.

For the K&N Pro Series West, the three new events will harken back to the series’ rich history. A May 2 date at Tucson will be the series’ first at the famed .375-mile Arizona oval since 2001. The K&N West will also return to Shasta, a .333-mile oval in Anderson, California, for the first time since 1993 while the Sept. 5 race at Meridian will be just the second visit in series history to the quarter-mile track located in Meridian, Idaho.

All told, the K&N Pro Series East has 14 dates at 13 different tracks in 11 states. In addition to the inaugural Motordrome event, the rest of the schedule includes:
• NASCAR Sprint Cup Series weekend companion events at Bristol Motor Speedway (April 18), Richmond International Raceway (April 24), New Hampshire Motor Speedway (July 17), Watkins Glen International (Aug. 7) and Dover International Speedway (season finale, Oct. 2).
• Stand-alone short track dates at New Smyrna Speedway (season opener, Feb. 15), Greenville Pickens Speedway (April 4), Bowman Gray Stadium (May 30), Langley Speedway (June 20) and Columbus Motor Speedway (July 4).
• Road course races at Watkins Glen International and Virginia International Raceway (Aug. 29).

Iowa Speedway also returns with its two K&N Pro Series East-West combination races as part of NASCAR XFINITY Series companion weekends on May 16 and July 31.

The K&N Pro Series West has a total of 13 dates across six states and 12 tracks. In addition to the two Iowa combo races and the three new dates, the remaining calendar includes:
• Sprint Cup Series weekend companion dates at Sonoma Raceway (June 27) and Phoenix International Raceway (season finale, Nov. 12).
• Short track stand-alone dates at Kern County Raceway Park (season opener, March 28), Irwindale Speedway (April 11), Stateline Speedway (July 11), Evergreen Speedway (Aug. 15), Colorado National Speedway (Aug. 22) and All American Speedway (Oct. 17).

The 2014 K&N Pro Series East and K&N Pro Series West seasons concluded with Ben Rhodes and Greg Pursley the respective series’ titlists. Their accomplishments were recognized as part of the NASCAR Touring Series Night of Champions this past Saturday in the Charlotte (North Carolina) Convention Center at the NASCAR Hall of Fame.

 

2015 NASCAR K&N PRO SERIES EAST SCHEDULE

Date Track Location
2/15 New Smyrna Speedway New Smyrna Beach, Fla.
4/4 Greenville Pickens Speedway Greenville, S.C.
4/18 Bristol Motor Speedway Bristol, Tenn.
4/24 Richmond International Raceway Richmond, Va.
5/16 Iowa Speedway (combination with NKNPS West) Newton, Iowa
5/30 Bowman Gray Stadium Winston-Salem, N.C.
6/20 Langley Speedway Hampton, Va.
7/4 Columbus Motor Speedway Columbus, Ohio
7/17 New Hampshire Motor Speedway Loudon, N.H.
7/31 Iowa Speedway (combination with NKNPS West) Newton, Iowa
8/7 Watkins Glen International Watkins Glen, N.Y.
8/15 Motordrome Speedway Smithton, Pa.
8/29 Virginia International Raceway Alton, Va.
10/2 Dover International Speedway Dover, Del.

 

2015 NASCAR K&N PRO SERIES WEST SCHEDULE

Date Track Location
3/28 Kern County Raceway Park Bakersfield, Calif.
4/11 Irwindale Speedway Irwindale, Calif.
5/2 Tucson Speedway Tucson, Ariz.
5/16 Iowa Speedway (combination with NKNPS East) Newton, Iowa
5/30 Shasta Speedway Anderson, Calif.
6/27 Sonoma Raceway Sonoma, Calif.
7/11 Stateline Speedway Post Falls, Id.
7/31 Iowa Speedway (combination with NKNPS East) Newton, Iowa
8/15 Evergreen Speedway Monroe, Wash.
8/22 Colorado National Speedway Dacono, Colo.
9/5 Meridian Speedway Meridian, Id.
10/17 All American Speedway Roseville, Calif.
11/12 Phoenix International Raceway Avondale, Ariz.

NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series to be sponsored by J&A Service

J&A Service, a leader in oil and gas well-servicing exploration, has signed an agreement to become the series sponsor for the NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series.  In 2015, the NHRA J&A Service Pro Mod Drag Racing Series will compete at 10 NHRA national events.

As part of its series sponsorship, J&A Service will provide a $200,000 purse that pays the national champion $50,000 and the series runner-up $20,000. Each individual event winner will earn $10,000 and the event runners-up will claim $3,000 each.

“We feel this is a tremendous opportunity to align our company with an NHRA drag racing series that has delivered excitement to the fans and shown positive growth each season,” said Jim and Annie Whiteley, owners of J&A Service. “We look forward to working with NHRA to continue to expand the Pro Mod Series and foster overall growth for the sport of NHRA drag racing.”

The series opens March 12-15 with the Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals at Gainesville Raceway in Florida. The series will once again race on Father’s Day weekend at Bristol Dragway, during the NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals (June 19-21), and also again on the Independence Day weekend (July 2-5), at the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals in Norwalk, Ohio. The series will conclude at the NHRA Toyota Nationals in Las Vegas on Halloween weekend. A complete series schedule is below.

“The NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series has evolved into a very competitive arena for a diverse mix of high-horsepower machines and has become a fan-favorite across the NHRA circuit,” said Gary Darcy, NHRA senior vice president of sales and marketing. “Through J&A Service’s commitment with the series entitlement we can continue to build upon the momentum that the Pro Mod Series has been gaining since it was launched in 2010.”

The NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series is supported by the Real Pro Mod (RPM) Association, a group of NHRA Pro Mod Series team owners who works closely with NHRA on many initiatives to maintain the series.

“It was important for us to find a sponsor that has a great passion for NHRA Pro Mod Racing and we have done that with J&A Service,” said Danny Rowe, Real Pro Mod Association board member. “With this important piece of the puzzle in place we can now get on with the business of delivering an exciting product on the track for the great fans of NHRA drag racing.”

Featuring the world’s fastest and most unique doorslammer race cars, highlighted by ’68 Camaros, ’67 Mustangs and ’68 Firebirds, as well as a variety of late-model cars, the NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series offers something for every kind of hot-rodding enthusiast.

In addition to J&A Service’s series sponsorship, other companies who support the series as event presenting sponsors are Precision Turbo, JEGS, Aeromotive and Mid-Atlantic Energy.

Series sponsor J&A Service is also a primary sponsor for the YNOT Racing team, which includes competition in the Pro Mod, Top Alcohol Funny Car, Top Dragster and Top Sportsman classes, featuring drivers Jim Whiteley, Annie Whiteley, Steven Whiteley, Anita Strasburg and John Baker.

J&A Service, owned by veteran racers Jim and Annie Whiteley, is located in Grand Junction, Colo. The company, a national oil and gas well-servicing business, leases and operates all forms of well-completion equipment and is the innovator of its patented Green Completions Unit, a self-contained, high-capacity mobile flowback separator that contains 99 percent of all airborne contaminates. Mobile units are available for sale or lease.

2015 NHRA J&A SERVICE PRO MOD DRAG RACING SERIES SCHEDULE
March 12-15 Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals Gainesville, Fla.
April 24-26 O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA SpringNationals Houston
May 15-17 Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals Atlanta
June 4-7 Toyota NHRA Summernationals Englishtown, N.J.
June 19-21 NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals Bristol, Tenn.
July 2-5 Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals Norwalk, Ohio
Sept. 2-7 Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals Indianapolis
Sept. 18-20 NHRA Carolina Nationals Charlotte, N.C.
Sept. 25-27 AAA Insurance NHRA Midwest Nationals St. Louis
Oct. 29-Nov. 1 NHRA Toyota Nationals Las Vegas

Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series to Visit NHRA Tracks Across The Country Again In 2015

GLENDORA, Calif. –

The NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series returns for a 14th season with premier events taking place across the country in all seven NHRA divisions it was announced today by NHRA officials. The 2015 schedule will feature 45 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.

The 2015 season will see a return to Auto Club Dragway at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. and Rockingham Dragway in Rockingham, N.C. The 2015 season will begin in Orlando, Feb. 13-15, and concludes in Las Vegas, Nov. 5-8.

The new season will also include the addition of two doubleheader weekends at Heartland Park Topeka in Topeka, Kan., Aug. 13-16 and Rocky Mountain Raceways in West Valley, Utah, Sept. 24-27.

The ultra-competitive series will feature three sportsman-focused national events during the season, the JEGS SPORTSNationals events during the course of the racing season. The JEGS Cajun SPORTSNationals will be held at No Problem Raceway, March 20-22; the JEGS Pacific SPORTSNationals, returns to Auto Club Dragway at Auto Club Speedway, May 29-31; and the JEGS Northern SPORTSNationals, Sept. 18-20 at National Trail Raceway. Regional, divisional and national championship points as well as a purse of more than $500,000 in seven categories will be up for grabs in the season.

“Having come through the Sportsman ranks myself, I know how important it is to have the support you need to compete,” said Morgan Lucas of Lucas Oil Products. “These are our people, these are our customers. The Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series is the core of our sport. I know I speak for everyone at Lucas Oil when I say that we’re honored to continue title sponsorship of this series.”

Bonus programs available to competitors in the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series include the $100,000 JEGS Allstars. Individual divisions may also have additional bonus programs available to racers.

In addition to Lucas, some prominent graduates of the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series who have gone on to successful careers in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series include Brandon Bernstein, Shawn Langdon, Courtney Force, Erica Enders-Stevens, Alexis DeJoria, and Jeg Coughlin.

2015 NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series Schedule

Northeast Division
April 24-25          Virginia Motorsports Park                         Dinwiddie, Va.

May 22-24            Maple Grove Raceway                               Reading, Pa.

June 26-28           Lebanon Valley Dragway                            West Lebanon, N.Y.        
July 17-19           New England Dragway                               Epping, N.H.       
July 31-Aug. 2       Atco Raceway                                      Atco, N.J.

Aug. 14-16           Cecil County Dragway                              Rising Sun, Md. 
Sept. 11-13          Old Bridge Township Raceway Park                  Englishtown, N.J.

                
Southeast Division                                                           
Feb. 13-15           Orlando Speed World Dragway                       Orlando, Fla.
Feb. 20-22           Auto Plus Raceway                                 Gainesville, Fla.
March 6-8            South Georgia Motorsports Park                    Valdosta, Ga.      
April 17-19          Montgomery Motorsports Park                       Montgomery, Ala.

May 29-31            Rockingham Dragway                                Rockingham, N.C.

Sept. 25-26          Bristol Dragway                                   Bristol, Tenn.

Oct. 16-18           Silver Dollar Raceway                             Reynolds, Ga.

                                                                
North Central Division                                                    
May 1-3              Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis                 Brownsburg, Ind.
May 15-17            Summit Motorsports Park                           Norwalk, Ohio
June 5-7             Route 66 Raceway                                  Joliet, Ill.

July 24-26           National Trail Raceway                            Columbus, Ohio

Aug. 7-8             Gateway Motorsports Park                          Madison, Ill. 
Aug. 28-30           Beech Bend Raceway Park                           Bowling Green, Ky.         
                                
South Central Division                                                    
March 6-8            Royal Purple Raceway                              Baytown, Texas

April 17-19          Texas Motorplex                                   Ennis, Texas       
May 29-31            No Problem Raceway                                Belle Rose, La.   
June 12-14           Osage Casino Tulsa Raceway Park                   Tulsa, Okla.         
Sept. 18-20          Thunder Road Raceway Park                         Gilliam, La.
Oct. 9-11            Thunder Valley Raceway Park                       Noble, Okla.
                                                                
West Central Division                                                     
May 15-17            SRCA Dragstrip                                    Great Bend, Kan.

June 6-7             Brainerd International Raceway                    Brainerd, Minn.

June 19-21           Bandimere Speedway                                Denver
Aug. 13-14           Heartland Park Topeka                             Topeka, Kan.
Aug. 15-16           Heartland Park Topeka                             Topeka, Kan.
Sept. 11-13          Tri-State Raceway                                 Earlville, Iowa    
                                                
Northwest Division                                                         
May 15-17            Firebird Raceway                                  Boise, Idaho

June 5-7             Mission Raceway                                   Mission, B.C.      
June 27-28           Yellowstone Dragstrip                             Acton, Mont.
July 17-19           Woodburn Dragstrip                                Woodburn, Ore.

Aug. 21-23           Pacific Raceways                                  Kent, Wash.

Sept. 18-20          Woodburn Dragstrip                                Woodburn, Ore.

Pacific Division                                                   
Feb. 27-Mar. 1       Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park                  Chandler, Ariz.  
April 17-19          The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway             Las Vegas            
May 22-24            Auto Club Dragway at Auto Club Speedway           Fontana, Calif.

July 24-26           Sonoma Raceway                                    Sonoma, Calif.   
Sept. 24-25          Rocky Mountain Raceways                           West Valley, Utah  
Sept. 26-27          Rocky Mountain Raceways                           West Valley, Utah          
Nov. 5-8             The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway             Las Vegas            

JEGS SPORTSnationals 
March 20-22          JEGS Cajun SPORTSnationals                        Belle Rose, La.
May 29-31            JEGS Pacific SPORTSnationals                      Fontana, Calif.
Sept. 18-20          JEGS Northern SPORTSnationals                     Hebron, Ohio


2015 NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series Regional Schedule

East Region
Feb. 20-22           Auto Plus Raceway                                 Gainesville, Fla.
April 24-25          Virginia Motorsports Park                         Dinwiddie, Va.

May 22-24            Maple Grove Raceway                               Reading, Pa.

June 26-28           Lebanon Valley Dragway                            West Lebanon, N.Y.        
July 17-19           New England Dragway                               Epping, N.H.       
July 31-Aug. 2       Atco Raceway                                      Atco, N.J.

                                                                
North Central Region                                                    
May 1-3              Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis                 Brownsburg, Ind.
May 15-17            Summit Motorsports Park                           Norwalk, Ohio
June 5-7             Route 66 Raceway                                  Joliet, Ill.

July 24-26           National Trail Raceway                            Hebron, Ohio                
Aug. 7-8             Gateway Motorsports Park                          Madison, Ill. 
Aug. 28-30           Beech Bend Raceway Park                           Bowling Green, Ky.         
                                
Central Region                                                    
April 17-19          Texas Motorplex                                   Ennis, Texas       
June 12-13           Osage Casino Tulsa Raceway Park                   Tulsa, Okla.         
June 19-21           Bandimere Speedway                                Denver
Aug. 13-15           Heartland Park Topeka                             Topeka, Kan.
Sept. 11-13          Tri-State Raceway                                 Earlville, Iowa    
Oct. 9-11            Thunder Valley Raceway Park                       Noble, Okla.
                                                                
West Region  
Feb. 27-Mar. 1       Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park                  Chandler, Ariz.  
April 17-19          The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway             Las Vegas            
June 5-7             Mission Raceway                                   Mission, B.C.      
July 17-19           Woodburn Dragstrip                                Woodburn, Ore.

Aug. 21-23           Pacific Raceways                                  Kent, Wash.

Sept. 18-20          Woodburn Dragstrip                                Woodburn, Ore.
Nov. 5-8             The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway             Las Vegas

Pursley Goes Out On Top

Veteran Driver Ends K&N West Career With Second Championship

nknps-west_feature_greg-pursley_team_1000x571

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Every great athlete dreams of riding off into the sunset when their career ultimately comes to a close, leaving behind the silhouette of a champion as they hang up their competitive gear for good.

Very few get to end at the top of their game, which is what makes Greg Pursley’s retirement from racing after winning his second NASCAR K&N Pro Series West championship special.

“This one is just as special as winning the first one, due to the fact that it’s the last ride for Gene Price Motorsports,” said Pursley. “To end the season and to end Gene Price Motorsports with a championship is pretty much the only way to go out. It’s pretty cool that we got to do that.”

The driver of the No. 26 Star Nursery/Real Water Ford showed no indication that his skills were waning in what turned out to be his final season. Pursley finished the year with two wins, three poles, 11 top fives and 13 top 10s in 14 starts this season, his sixth for championship car owner Gene Price. Often times racing side-by-side drivers that were less than half his age, the Newhall, California, native put on a racing display nearly every week he was at the track. He completed 1800 of 1804 laps run this year, leading 454 laps in total — 160 more than the next closest competitor. Pursley led at least one lap in 10 events in 2014 and never relinquished the points lead after capturing it in the second event of the season. He ended the year with a 4.1 average race finish.

“One of our goals throughout this year was that we wanted to finish top three every race and then win some races,” said Pursley. “While we didn’t get all the way there, we came close. I think between Gene and Jerry Pitts my crew chief and all the guys in the shop busting their butts, we all had one main goal in mind and that was to go out and win a championship.”

Pursley’s retirement brings to a close a career with the series that spanned 10 seasons. A known driver in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series — he won the national championship in 2004 — Pursley made his K&N Pro Series West debut with an 11th-place finish at Mesa Marin Raceway in Bakersfield, California, in 1999.

For the next decade, Pursley would mostly focus his Whelen All-American Series commitments. Following his 1999 debut, he next ran with the series in 2002, finishing ninth in the championship standings after running the full season. Pursley would make five more starts in the series, one in 2007 and four in 2008, before pairing with Gene Price Motorsports beginning in 2009.

“I’ve known Gene for over 10 years now,” said Pursley. “I used to crew chief for his son at Irwindale Speedway (now Irwindale Event Center). The first time I drove a car for Gene was in 2007 at the Toyota All-Star Showdown super late model event there and we won it. After that, I kind of hit him up on driving some K&N stuff and low and behold we have a whole team now.”

Pursley won his first series race in his first event with Gene Price Motorsports, the 2009 Allstate Texas Thunder 150 at Thunder Hill Raceway in Kyle, Texas. He finished the year third in the standings, pairing up with crew chief Jerry Pitts in the final event of the season.

In 2010, the program took a relative step back. While Pursley won two events on the year, he only recorded four top-five and seven top-10 finishes, down from eight and 11 respectively in 2009. He finished fifth in the championship battle that year.

Pursley opened 2011 with hopes of putting the bad luck of 2010 in the rearview mirror. He won season opener at Phoenix International Raceway in February, his second straight series win at the track, but a simple walk across his kitchen floor in the middle of an early April night nearly put not only Pursley’s season – but his life – in jeopardy.

He was stung twice in the bottom of the foot by a scorpion he never saw. His family was out of town at the time, leaving him facing very real danger. He was eventually airlifted to a Las Vegas hospital and spent three days in the intensive care unit.

Pursley would eventually rebound, winning six races that year, accompanied by six pole awards, 12 top fives and 12 top 10s en route to his first series championship.

From 2012 through 2014, Pursley would go on to record 11 race wins, nine poles, 32 top fives and 40 top 10s. In six years with Gene Price Motorsports, Pursley had 20 wins, 20 poles, 56 top fives and 70 top 10s in 83 starts, capping off the incredible run with his second series title.

Pursley knows that the team’s success began with the support from the man at the very top.

“One of the best things we had going for us was our car owner, Gene,” said Pursley. “There was never anything that came out of his mouth about us having to cut down on spending money or testing anywhere. It was always, ‘We need to go out there and win some races. Let’s go do what it takes.’ Gene is the kind of guy that, when he does something, he wants to do it right.”

“I wouldn’t be anywhere in my career without Gene. You can say he let me fulfill my dream as a racer out here.”

So, what comes next for Greg Pursley? Will he go back to racing super late models or crew chiefing up-and-coming talent? Or will he look to start his own racing team and win a championship as an owner?

“All good things must come to an end,” said Pursley. “We’re going to keep the shop open here and we’re going to be working on hot rods, building hot rods and high performance boats. Other than that, there are no plans of racing.”

“Through GPM, there were three championships won out of here in six years, two with me and one with (Dylan) Kwasniewski. I don’t think that’s too bad of a record. I’m pretty proud of all of the guys here who worked hard to get three championships for Gene. I couldn’t ask for anything more.”

Pursley will be formally crowned series champion when he receives the K&N Pro Series West championship ring and trophy at the NASCAR Touring Series Awards on Dec. 13 in the Charlotte (North Carolina) Convention Center at the NASCAR Hall of Fame.

 

 

Carroll Shelby

A passion for performance. A champion with an unquenchable desire to win. An American success story. These are among the descriptions earned by the legendary Carroll Shelby. He is an icon that embodies the ingenuity, tenacity and grit needed to win in business, competition and philanthropy.

The Shelby name is synonymous with performance. It’s a part of the man’s DNA, which was molded and shaped during years of competition. His vision of the automobile changed the rules for automotive performance forever. Today, Carroll Shelby and the companies he founded are a driving force for products and industries worldwide.

Aston Martin left Carroll Shelby right

While his ability to race automobiles at exhilarating speeds has made Carroll Shelby one of the most prolific personalities in the automotive industry, that success did not happen overnight. A WWII aviator, Carroll began racing – and winning – in the mid-1950s.

His first race was at a drag strip in a 1932 Ford. Moving to road racing, he captured three national sports car championships in the United States, earned a spot on the Aston-Martin team in Europe, won international races that included a victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and set land speed records at Bonneville. Twice, he was named Sports Car Illustrated’s “Driver of the Year.”

Shelby believed in combining big horsepower with inspired engineering, which led him to take Ford’s new small block engine and shoehorn it into AC’s lightweight Ace.  Christened the Cobra, CSX 2000 was introduced at the New York Auto Show in 1962.   This focus on pure performance turned the sports car world on its ear.

In 1963, Shelby took a team of Cobras to Europe to race against Ferrari, Porsche and Jaguar on their own turf. Superstars like Bob Bondurant, Dan Gurney, Ken Miles and others driving for Team Shelby captured the Grand Touring World Championship in 1965.  Gurney and Bondurant returned the next year for Team Shelby to win the 24 Hours of Le Mans in a Ford GT40. The team repeated their Le Mans win in 1967. At the same time, Shelby’s operations turned out the Shelby 289 and 427 Cobras, as well as a succession of Mustang based Shelbys.

Carroll Shelby is perhaps the only person to have worked at a visible level with all three of major American automobile manufacturers.  His charisma, vision and ability to build teams have made him into a master organizer and leader.  In 1992, Carroll Shelby was inducted in the Automotive Hall of Fame for his body of achievements.

From his fire breathing Cobras, Series 1 and Ford Shelby Mustangs to his involvement in the Viper and Ford GT, he has continued to push the performance envelope.  And Carroll Shelby is still making automotive history with his new CSX4000 and CSX7000 Cobras.  In 2006, he formed a new partnership with Ford Motor Company.  Since then, the fantastic Shelby GT500, Shelby GT and Shelby GT500KR have moved him once again into the fast lane.  His performance philosophy is as relevant and appealing to enthusiasts today as it was 50 years ago.

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