2022 NMCA Xtreme Pro Mod Champion Randy Merick to Compete in 2023 Drag Illustrated World Series of Pro Mod
BRADENTON, FL – Coming off a successful 2022 season in which he secured four NMCA wins and the Xtreme Pro Mod championship, Glen Allen, Missouri’s Randy Merick was invited to participate in the 2023 Drag Illustrated World Series of Pro Mod to be held March 3-5, 2023 at Bradenton Motorsports Park.
“Wes [Buck] called me and congratulated me and asked me if I would come, and you can’t turn that down,” Merick said of the coveted invitation to the WSOPM race.
Owner of the Twin Lakes Whitetails hunting ranch and a farmer as well, Merick is a longtime, big-tire racer who has raced Pro Modified since 1997. He also competed in the wild Super Chevy Nitro Coupe class from 1999 throughout the early 2000s, and set both E.T. and speed records for the class and doorslammers worldwide.
While he didn’t intend to run for NMCA championship in 2022, he hit five of the six races, and after winning the St. Louis event mid-season, he kept the throttle down and was able to sweep the remaining three races despite considerable challenges from Derek Ward, Jim Widener, and defending champion Chip King.
BRADENTON, FL – As a co-founder of the PDRA and a two-time Pro Nitrous world champion in the series, Tommy Franklin has made a lasting impact on the eighth-mile Pro Mod scene over the last 10 years. Now, Franklin is hoping to add another title to his resume – World Series of Pro Mod winner.
Franklin, driver of the Musi-powered “Jungle Rat” ’69 Camaro, was the second driver invited to compete in the 2023 Drag Illustrated World Series of Pro Mod, March 3-5, at Bradenton Motorsports Park. The winner of the 32-car, invite-only race will walk away with $100,000.
“First and foremost, I’m gonna go for that $100,000, but if it’s not me, I’ll definitely be pulling for one of my PDRA teams for sure,” said Franklin, who owns the PDRA and Virginia Motorsports Park along with wife Judy. “I want one of my guys to win that deal. I want to be arrogant and say one of my guys is going to win it. I’ve said it many times, I’ll stack our racers up against anyone.”
BRADENTON, FL – Mark Micke has made significant contributions to the world of doorslammer drag racing, both as a driver and as the owner of M&M Transmission. He holds the record for the fastest eighth-mile pass in Radial vs. the World history, and his company’s transmissions, torque converters, and shifters have been used by some of the most accomplished racers in Pro Mod, drag radial, Street Outlaws: No Prep Kings, and beyond.
Micke was also the first advertiser in Drag Illustrated magazine back in 2005, and he’s maintained an ad in all 177 issues after that first edition. With all those factors in mind, DI Founder and Editorial Director Wes Buck chose to extend the first driver invitation for the $100,000-to-win 2023 DI World Series of Pro Mod, March 3-5, at Bradenton Motorsports Park to Micke.
“I remember telling [Micke] ‘We don’t have the magazine done yet, but I promise it’s going to be badass.’ He goes, ‘I believe in you, Wes. Send me an invoice.’” Buck said as he introduced Micke on the Nov. 3 edition of The Wes Buck Show. “This gentleman has been a part of the Drag Illustrated family ever since. I wanted to make sure the very first invite to the WSOPM went to the same guy who believed in me 17 years ago as we embark on this next chapter of the DI journey.”
The Los Angeles-area native benefitted from some first-round luck against Stevie “Fast” Jackson and then rode a string of three straight incredible runs in his turbocharged RJ Race Cars Ford Shelby Mustang. That included a event-winning blast of 5.882-seconds at 247.38 mph in the final round against Doug Winters to claim victory at the third annual Drag Illustrated World Series of Pro Mod presented by J&A Service, Elite Motorsports, Big O Tires and benefiting One Cure at Bandimere Speedway.
With that comes a $100,000 check, a WSOPM championship belt and, by far, the biggest moment of Oksas’ Pro Mod career.
“It’s just pure excitement,” Oksas said. “This is just giant. I’ve busted my ass for 10 years doing this Pro Mod stuff, I’ve worked so hard and I can’t believe I’m standing here, I really can’t. To win this, it’s always been a passion of mine to win something like this. I can’t even describe it. It’s just overwhelming, it’s crazy.”
MORRISON, CO – With $100,000 on the line, the stars competing in the third annual Drag Illustrated World Series of Pro Mod presented by J&A Service, Elite Motorsports, Big O Tires and benefiting One Cure looked to make an opening statement on Friday at Bandimere Speedway.
The trio of Scott Oksas, Stevie “Fast” Jackson and Rick Hord did just that, as each fired an impressive salvo to lead the way on Thunder Mountain.
The scoreboards were turned off as the Pro Mod drivers made three runs on Friday, but it didn’t take a trained eye to see that the two turbocharged cars and Jackson’s blown Bahrain 1 Racing Camaro positioned themselves nicely.
For Oksas, it’s a continuation of two solid days of testing, as he’s now made nine runs in his ’67 Shelby Ford Mustang he considered better than the previous one.
Now the West Coast standout hopes history can repeat itself this weekend, this time on Thunder Mountain for the third annual Drag Illustrated World Series of Pro Mod presented by J&A Service, Elite Motorsports, Big O Tires and benefiting One Cure.
Snavely will race his turbocharged Turbos Direct Camaro at Bandimere Speedway for the first time, but the Los Angeles-based driver is ready to pull off a few more surprises this weekend.
“This is it. You have to come here to this race,” Snavely said. “This race has been a major attraction. The truth is, we don’t go anywhere to lose. This would be an incredible race to win.”
He’s also the current points leader in 2019 on Thunder Mountain, but in his eyes the biggest weekend of the year takes place on Friday and Saturday at the Drag Illustrated World Series of Pro Mod presented by J&A Service, Elite Motorsports, Big O Tires and benefiting One Cure in Denver.
Top Sportsman and Top Dragster get marquee billing at the event, as the winners of the MagnaFuel ProStar 16 and QuickStar 16 Shootouts presented by Menholt Auto Group in Top Dragster and Top Sportsman both get $10,000.
It’s a significant sum for Jackson and his wife, Valeen, this weekend, but there’s several other reasons why this weekend will be time well spent at Bandimere Speedway.
Second-Chance One Cure Shootout Added for Top Dragster, Top Sportsman Racers at World Series of Pro Mod
MORRISON, CO – The third annual Drag Illustrated World Series of Pro Mod, Aug. 9-10 at Bandimere Speedway will also feature a $5,000-to-win One Cure Shootout presented by On Track Performance, John Low LPD and Corridor Collision, race officials announced today.
The all-run shootout is designated for drivers who don’t qualify for the $10,000-to-win MagnaFuel ProStar 16 and QuickStar 16 Shootouts presented by Menholt Auto Group.
Based on NHRA Top Dragster and Top Sportsman, respectively, the ProStar and QuickStar classes quickly became staples at the first two World Series of Pro Mod events.
The pre-entry lists for this year’s race, which is presented by J&A Service, Elite Motorsports, Big O Tires and will benefit One Cure, are made up of more than the 16 drivers that each MagnaFuel Shootout will accept. That abundance of cars prompted race officials to add a second-chance shootout.
MORRISON, CO – Stevie “Fast” Jackson was already itching to get back to the dragstrip. A phone call from Jim Whiteley on Saturday was the final nudge the star driver needed to return to Bandimere Speedway for this weekend’s Drag Illustrated World Series of Pro Mod presented by J&A Service, Elite Motorsports, Big O Tires and benefiting One Cure.
Jackson, the NHRA Pro Mod points leader, had begrudgingly planned on sitting out the race in 2019 as he honed in trying to win his first NHRA world championship.
But when it came down to the final decision-making hours, the love of the sport, plus lure of racing on Thunder Mountain in his blown Bahrain 1 Racing Camaro with $100,000 on the line, was too much to resist.
MORRISON, CO – Garrett Advancing Motion, a premier turbocharger manufacturer servicing drag racers across the world, will be joining the list of 2019 sponsors for the Drag Illustrated World Series of Pro Mod. The third annual event, known as the highest-paying Pro Mod race in the world, will take place Aug. 9-10 at Bandimere Speedway, just outside of Denver.
The addition of Garret Advancing Motion adds another standout company to the World Series of Pro Mod presented by J&A Service, Elite Motorsports, Big O Tires and benefiting One Cure, which will award $100,000 to the winner of the 16-car-field.
“Being one of the major turbo manufacturers, it’s always one of our focuses not just to manufacture the products, but to be a part of putting them to the test and sponsoring teams and working with the racing series that allow our products in the field to support it,” said Tim Coltey, marketing specialist at Garret Advancing Motion. “We have a pretty impressive group of partners that we’re working with and they’re really putting the turbos to work and seeing what they can do.”