Drag racing entrepreneur Evan Knoll’s expanding influence took a new turn with the announcement this week of a naming rights agreement that will transform US 131 Motorsports Park into Knoll Gas Motorsports Park at US 131. The facility is home to an IHRA Nitro Jam™ Drag Racing Series event, the Torco Racing Fuels Northern Nationals, August 3 – 5.


Knoll, whose holdings include Knoll Gas, Torco Racing Fuels, Seelye Wright Automotive Group, Skull Shine, Accelerator and Skull Gear, works out of corporate offices in nearby Decatur, Mich., a 45-minute drive from the track.


“It made sense to put our name on our home track,” Knoll said. “It’s a great place to spotlight our complete product line and showcase our drivers and teams.”


Track General Manager Jason Peterson announced the five-year pact, the result of months of negotiations with Knoll and CFO Latrell Preston. Financial terms of the agreement were not revealed.

“Naturally, we’re very excited,” Peterson said. “This is win-win deal. We already had a great relationship with Evan Knoll through his sponsorship of the Torco Racing Fuels Northern Nationals, but this takes it to another level.”


The Torco Northern Nationals is one of the 12 races comprising the Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series. It will be contested this year August 3 – 5. Torco has been the track’s “Official Racing Fuel” for the last 10 seasons.


Among the drivers sponsored by Torco, or one of Knoll’s other properties, are Dale Creasy Jr., and Mike Ashley in Funny Car, J.R. Todd, Melanie Troxel, Doug Foley, Clay Millican and Scotty Cannon in Top Fuel and Dave Connolly in Pro Stock among a host of others.


“Everyone associated with US 131 will benefit from this terrific partnership,” said Stephanie Peterson, the track’s Marketing and Public Relations Director.  “Fans, sponsors, racers, media and local tourism can expect to see a major Torco presence at each of our three biggest events. Look forward to seeing the Evan Knoll-sponsored Skull Shine Top Fuel dragster driven by Winternationals winner J.R. Todd at our Torco Northern Nationals.  We can’t wait to expose all the product lines, from Skull Gear to Accelerator to Skull Shine, to our fans and racers.”


In addition to the Torco Northern Nationals, the track’s major events include the National City Thunder Nationals, contested this year on May 12, and the Funny Car Nationals, scheduled September 15.