THRILLING FUNNY CAR TITLE RACE FEATURES FORMER WORLD CHAMPS COMPETING FOR ANOTHER CROWN AT AUTO CLUB NHRA FINALS
POMONA, CA – Jack Beckman remembers the incredible emotions he felt claiming his first Funny Car world title seven years ago in Pomona. He returns to the historic facility for this weekend’s 55th annual Auto Club NHRA Finals at historic Auto Club Raceway at Pomona, hopeful he can enjoy another magical weekend at the final race of the Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship playoffs. But he’s not the only former world champ after the ultimate prize.
The race for the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series world title in Funny Car features plenty of thrilling storylines, including the fact that all four major contenders are championship tested. Two-time world champ Robert Hight is the current leader, holding a 46-point lead on Beckman, a 56-point advantage on two-time champ Matt Hagan and a 72-point cushion on 16-time champ and teammate John Force. Three of the four (Hight, Beckman, Force) are southern California natives, while they have also combined for 26 wins at Pomona.
That’s a list that doesn’t include Beckman, who hopes his first career win at Pomona in his 11,000-horsepower Infinite Hero Foundation Dodge SRT Hellcat paves the way for a second world title. With the points-and-a-half scenario in play at Pomona, Beckman knows anything can happen.
GLENDORA, CA – NHRA announced today that the Bahrain International Circuit, which currently boasts a vibrant drag racing community and numerous events, has extended their NHRA Worldwide Network agreement.
NHRA Worldwide Network is designed to enable drag racing facilities around the world to conduct events under the NHRA banner. As part of the NHRA Worldwide Network, Bahrain International Circuit will be able to use the specially-designed “Worldwide Drag Racing” NHRA oval for broad promotional purposes and will be able to draw on NHRA’s decades of experience and history.
“We are excited to announce Bahrain International Circuit has extended their agreement with the NHRA,” said Josh Peterson, NHRA vice president racing administration. “Drag Racing is extremely popular in Bahrain and we are excited to continue working with the track to help grow their programs.”
TOP FUEL CHAMPIONSHIP HOPEFULS PREPARING FOR WILD RIDE AS WORLD TITLE SET TO BE DECIDED AT AUTO CLUB NHRA FINALS
POMONA, CA – It is only fitting that an incredible season in Top Fuel, one loaded with a multitude of standout competitors, is slated for an epic finish at this weekend’s 55th annual Auto Club NHRA Finals at historic Auto Club Raceway at Pomona.
While a handful of drivers are still mathematically alive heading into the final race of the Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship playoffs, the world champion will likely be decided by four star participants: reigning NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series world champ Steve Torrence, 2017 Top Fuel champ Brittany Force, longtime veteran Doug Kalitta, who is seeking his first championship, and Steve’s father, Billy, who has come alive in the Countdown with two wins.
S. Torrence currently holds the slight advantage with a 16-point lead over Force in his 11,000-horsepower Capco Contractors dragster. He leads Kalitta by 55 points and his father by 86, knowing full well it is shaping up to be a wild weekend in Pomona to close out the 2019 season.
GLENDORA, CA – The NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series, where the future stars of the sport earn their racing stripes, returns to action for the 2020 race season to compete at premier racing facilities across the country.
The action-packed series kicks off at Orlando Speed World Dragway, in Orlando, Fla. on Jan. 31 – Feb. 2.
New this season, National Trail Raceway will feature double the sportsman racing action as it hosts a Division 3 points meet July 16-17 directly followed by the iconic JEGS NHRA SPORTSnationals, July 18-19.
The 2020 season will conclude for the Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series in Las Vegas, November 5-8.
FUNNY CAR’S ROBERT HIGHT EMBRACING PRESSURE TO PERFORM AT HOME TRACK WITH WORLD TITLE ON THE LINE AT AUTO CLUB NHRA FINALS
POMONA, CA – Robert Hight has been in this situation before and it’s one that never gets old. The Funny Car standout is competing at his home track, at his sponsor’s race with the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series world title on the line, and it’s a moment where Hight has often thrived. With a possible third world title in reach, Hight hopes to again come through in the clutch at the 55th annual Auto Club NHRA Finals, Nov. 14-17 at historic Auto Club Raceway at Pomona.
He’s been a near wire-to-wire points leader in his 11,000-horsepower Auto Club of Southern California Chevrolet Camaro SS this year, entering the final race of the Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship and 2019 NHRA season with a 46-point lead on Jack Beckman. Two other world title drivers – John Force and Matt Hagan – are also title threats to Hight, but this is a moment he has always reveled in throughout his championship career.
“This year, it’s a lot like 2017 and I’m going in as the leader,” said Hight, who won his second world title that year. “It’s a lot of pressure, but it’s exciting and I can’t wait. I want to get going and it doesn’t get better than a shot at winning a championship at your home track in front of your sponsors. This is what it’s all about and we’re not going to change how we race. We can’t go there and protect points. That’s not how we got here. We’ll go into Pomona swinging and be aggressive.”
GLENDORA, CA – NHRA announced today that Alaska Raceway Park, located in Palmer, Alaska, has signed on as a new Division 6 NHRA member track. Originally built in 1964, the multi-use motorsports park will become a member of the Northwest Division.
Alaska Raceway Park, owned and operated by Earl and Karen Lackey and Michelle Lackey Maynor, sits about 42 miles northeast of Anchorage, Alaska. As part of the track’s new agreement with NHRA, Alaska Raceway Park will be adding additional facility and safety features.
“The dragstrip has been there for 55 years and we just opened the NASCAR track in 2016. NHRA is the top name in drag racing and NASCAR is the top name in oval racing so it seemed like a good fit,” said Lackey Maynor. “We’re excited for the upcoming season. To get back to the fun part of racing. That track family atmosphere is kind of what we’re focusing on for this year.”
As is tradition for Heartland Motorsports Park, the Menards NHRA Heartland Nationals presented by Minties promises to deliver all the fast and thrilling action of the NHRA and what midwestern fans have come to expect from the event.
Steve Torrence (Top Fuel) and Robert Hight (Funny Car) took home titles from the fan-favorite event in 2019.
Making its return to Heartland Motorsports Park is the super sophisticated Pro Stock division. Along with the 11,000-horsepower nitro fueled Top Fuel and Funny Car classes, fans can take in the action of Pro Stock and even meet their favorite drivers including champions Erica Enders, Greg Anderson and Jason Line.