FREDERICKSBURG, VA – With a resurgence of nitrous-assisted cars and a rules change impacting his naturally aspirated combination, Johnny Pluchino knew he would have his hands full defending his Professional Drag Racers Association (PDRA) Pro Outlaw 632 world championship this season.
Pluchino and his New York-based team, led by his father, John, doubled down their efforts, though, and managed to clinch the 2019 Schwing America Pro Outlaw 632 presented by East Side Auto Transport and Precision Chassis world championship in dramatic fashion during the Brian Olson Memorial World Finals presented by ProLine Racing and $hameless Racing at Virginia Motorsports Park in October.
Last season, the second-generation driver won his title decisively, setting a class record, qualifying No. 1 four times and winning two races along the way. He realized this season’s road to the championship would be different, with drivers like Wes Distefano and his nitrous-assisted $hameless Racing ’68 Camaro gearing up to knock Pluchino and car owner Dominic Addeo’s Kaase-powered Strutmasters.com ’06 Ford Escort off the throne.
FREDERICKSBURG, VA – Kellan Farmer had a point to prove when he set out on his 2019 Professional Drag Racers Association (PDRA) championship hunt. Farmer, the Race Tech Race Cars shop foreman, wanted to dispel a myth that Race Tech cars wouldn’t be competitive in fast bracket racing applications.
With an event win and the 2019 PDRA Lucas Oil Elite Top Dragster world championship in hand, Farmer feels he proved his point.
“We really got our point across, especially since it was my first season running that fast,” said Farmer, 26. “You can’t really tell me that it was driver experience. I’m pretty much going to count most of my wins to that car and how consistent it was. It could just go rounds. It proved our point, and just having all our hard work pay off made it worth it.”
Farmer, an accomplished former Jr. Dragster driver with experience in big-money bracket racing, made his Elite Top Dragster debut at the season-opening PDRA East Coast Nationals presented by FuelTech at GALOT Motorsports Park. Driving his brand-new nitrous-assisted Race Tech dragster, Farmer qualified No. 14 and to his surprise, worked through four rounds to win the event.
DINWIDDIE, VA – Newly crowned world champions Jim Halsey and Travis Davis capped off their championship seasons with victories at the Professional Drag Racers Association (PDRA) Brian Olson Memorial World Finals presented by Pro Line Racing and $hameless Racing at Virginia Motorsports Park. Halsey won and secured his first Switzer Dynamics Pro Nitrous world title, while Travis Davis won and claimed his second Drag 965 Pro Nitrous Motorcycle title.
Also claiming professional class victories at the World Finals were Mike DiDomenico in Moroso Pro Boost, Chris Powers in Liberty’s Gears Extreme Pro Stock and Jeremy Huffman in Schwing America Pro Outlaw 632 presented by Precision Chassis. Jesse Lambert picked up the win in Atomizer Racing Injectors Outlaw 10.5 presented Drag 965.
The World Finals also featured intense competition in the PDRA’s sportman classes, where the winners were Erica Coleman in MagnaFuel Elite Top Sportsman, Chad Tilley in Top Sportsman 48, Michael White in Lucas Oil Elite Top Dragster and Mike Reavis in Top Dragster 32. Tyler Rudolph defeated JB Donati in the Edelbrock Bracket Bash final round.
DINWIDDIE, VA – Moroso Pro Boost newcomer Randy Weatherford broke the 3.50-second barrier and set a new class record on his way to the No. 1 qualifying spot Friday night at the Professional Drag Racers Association (PDRA) Brian Olson Memorial World Finals presented by Pro Line Racing and $hameless Racing. Weatherford’s ProCharger-boosted WS Construction ’19 Camaro recorded a 3.597-second blast at 209.14 mph.
The other standout No. 1 qualifiers after two sessions in the professional classes are Jim Halsey in Switzer Dynamics Pro Nitrous, Chris Powers in Liberty’s Gears Extreme Pro Stock, Jeremy Huffman in Schwing America Pro Outlaw 632 presented by Precision Chassis and Chris Garner-Jones in Drag 965 Pro Nitrous Motorcycle. Mo Hall topped the field in Atomizer Racing Injectors Outlaw 10.5 presented by Drag 965.
The PDRA’s sportsman classes also set their fields after two qualifying sessions. The No. 1 qualifiers are John Benoit in MagnaFuel Top Sportsman and Brian Bednar in Lucas Oil Top Dragster.
DINWIDDIE, VA – The 2020 Professional Drag Racers Association (PDRA) schedule will feature new stops at Summit Motorsports Park and Maple Grove Raceway, in addition to four returning venues, race officials announced Friday morning. The schedule was revealed to drivers and teams during the pre-race driver’s meeting at the PDRA World Finals presented by Pro Line Racing and $hameless Racing at Virginia Motorsports Park.
The most noteworthy changes to the PDRA schedule are the new stops at Summit Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio, June 11-13; and Maple Grove Raceway in Reading, Pa., Aug. 20-22.
“The PDRA is the premier place to race for over 10 categories of drag racing,” said Tyler Crossnoe, race director, PDRA. “While we pride ourselves on having the best racers, they have to have a platform to perform on. Adding national event caliber facilities like Summit Motorsports Park and Maple Grove Raceway really put a staple on the PDRA calendar with two more strong tracks to go along with our other returning stops.”
PDRA racers are familiar with the rest of the tracks on the 2020 schedule, as the series has contested races – twice a year in some cases – at the four facilities for the last few years. The season will kick off at GALOT Motorsports Park in Benson, N.C., April 2-4. The popular track will also host the penultimate race of the season Oct. 8-10. Virginia Motorsports Park in Dinwiddie, Va., will also play host to two events, May 7-9, and the season finale Oct. 22-25. Time-tested facilities Maryland International Raceway in Budds Creek, Md., (July 16-18) and Darlington Dragway in Hartsville, S.C., (Sept. 10-12) round out the eight-race schedule. Continue reading
DINWIDDIE, VA — After a record-setting performance in Darlington earlier this month, Lizzy Musi and the Musi Racing team will look to end the Professional Drag Racers Association (PDRA) season with a victory at this weekend’s PDRA World Finals at Virginia Motorsports Park.
The finale to the 2019 PDRA season comes at a particularly busy – and successful – time for the Musi Racing team. After going 3.615-seconds at 208.62 mph to make the quickest pass in Pro Nitrous history at the PDRA Fall Nationals and advancing to the semifinals, Musi raced her Edelbrock-equipped “Aftershock” at the Street Outlaws: No Prep Kings event at Palm Beach International Racing last weekend, with Musi-powered star Kye Kelley picking up the event win.
That makes the PDRA World Finals the third straight race weekend for Musi Racing, but the team is locked in and ready to put together another strong outing in the Frank Brandao-owned Edelbrock/Lucas Oil “King Kong 7” 2018 Dodge Dart.
DINWIDDIE, VA – The season-long championship battles in the Professional Drag Racers Association (PDRA) will come to a dramatic close this weekend when the all-eighth-mile series heads to Virginia Motorsports Park for the PDRA Brian Olson Memorial World Finals presented by Pro Line Racing and $hameless Racing, Oct. 17-20.
Multiple PDRA records were set at the PDRA’s last stop, the Fall Nationals at Darlington Dragway in early October. The points that came with those records played a part in the current championship scenarios, and even more record passes are expected to influence the final championship decisions at Virginia.
“Expectations are high for a lot of racers to come in and run fast,” said Tyler Crossnoe, race director, PDRA. “The surface and the weather conditions at Virginia around that time of year are usually ideal, so it should be an exciting World Finals.”
The combination of cool conditions and pressure-packed championship scenarios will make for thrilling racing and intriguing story lines from the start of qualifying on Friday through the final round of eliminations on Sunday. Nearly all the world championships are still up for grabs.