:::::: News ::::::


Less than 48 hours after learning of his longtime sponsor's sudden and
unexpected hiatus from drag racing, Mike Ashley has acquired primary funding for
his NHRA Funny Car team for 2008 and beyond.

Ashley today announced a
racing partnership with ProCare Rx Chairman and Founder Roger Burgess with the
goal of fielding the ultimate championship drag racing team. Ashley and Burgess
will initially field one nitro Funny Car with racing standout Melanie Troxel
behind the wheel, and will aggressively seek additional long-term sponsorship to
field a second Funny Car in the NHRA.

"I wasn't sure what we were going
to do," Ashley recounted.  "I got the announcement and it was obviously
stunning. I was on the way to Indianapolis to talk with the team when Roger
called me and asked what I was going to do about the 2008 season.

initial response was that it was such short notice that I wasn't sure what we
would be doing and I didn't know if we were going to be able to continue long
term. Roger immediately hopped on a plane and met me at the shop in Brownsburg


In a press conference earlier today, Andrew Bornstein, Amalie Oil Business
Development Manager, announced that Amalie Motor Oil will renew and expand its
relationship with Terry McMillen and the Hoosier Thunder Motorsports drag racing
team based in Elkhart, Ind. Amalie will continue its primary sponsorship of the
Amalie Oil InstiGator Funny Car and become the major associate sponsor of the
Amalie Oil Top Fuel Dragster. The team is scheduled to compete in all 11 IHRA

The news comes on the heels of yesterday's announcement that
Amalie renewed its relationship with the IHRA, retaining title sponsorship of
the Amalie Oil Texas Nationals (San Antonio April 4-6) and the Amalie Oil North
American Nationals (Epping, N.H. September 5-7)in a multi-year agreement that
will also keep Amalie as the Official Motor Oil of the IHRA.


Four-time drag racing champion Gary Scelzi is still having a blast at
the 22nd annual Dodge Chili Bowl Nationals, driving the Jegs/K&N
Filters/Scelzi Enterprises/Mopar USAC midget. The Fresno, Calif.,
native finished fifth and sixth, respectively, in his two qualifying
races Wednesday night on the Tulsa Expo Raceway clay oval, but it did
not get him into the A-main and final event on Saturday night.

whose usual mount is the Mopar/Oakley Dodge Charger R/T Funny Car in
the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, still has one chance -- although
extremely remote -- to make the field, in another qualifying event on

"I'm guaranteed to race on Saturday," he said,
"because there are several 'Mains' (or consolation races). The A-main
is obviously the main deal, but there isn't a chance in hell of my
making that. I knew that going in. There's no way a guy is going to
come from as far back in the field as I am and get up front. I don't
think Tony Stewart could make the A-main from where I'll be starting in
the field.



Jason Sharp, of Speedtech Nitrous, will field this Mullis Built dragster driven by Anthony
Jones of Tuscaloosa , Alabama to be run in NHRA Div 2 as well as
the big money bracket promoters like George Howard events. The car will be
powered by a Sunset Racecraft 582 cid, Speedtech Nitrous-enhanced combination
along with a Hughes Performance built Powerglide. The exquisite design has been applied by
the talented staff at Illusions Paint and Body in Bristol, TN


The following are the pre-entries received for the 8th annual Eastern Spring Test Nationals presented by Torco's CompetitionPlus.com hosted by South Georgia Motorsports Park in Valdosta, Ga. 


j_force.jpgJust over three months after suffering severe injuries to his feet, hands and
legs in a 300 mile-an-hour crash, John Force climbed into and out of the cockpit
of his Castrol GTX® High Mileage™ Ford Mustang Funny Car last week in a special
rehabilitation session at the John Force Racing complex supervised by physical
therapy director Robert Ortmayer.
 “It wasn’t easy,” Force said, “but I could do it.  I said I’d be ready
(for the NHRA’s 2008 season) and I will.”
 In fact, just 100 days after being airlifted out of the Texas Motorplex,
the 58-year-old drag racing icon has shed the casts on his feet and hands and is
maneuvering without either a walker or cane. 
 Fitted with a special brace on a left foot that suffered the most
traumatic injury – a compound fracture, the 14-time NHRA Funny Car Champion has
been cleared to intensify an already rigorous physical therapy regimen in
advance of the 2008 season.



NHRA also announces Auto Club NHRA Finals moved to Nov. 13-16, 2008

NHRA announced today modifications to the NHRA POWERade Countdown to
the Championship designed to build upon the excitement and success
generated from last year’s inaugural season.  In addition, NHRA also
announced that the final race of the season, the Automobile Club of
Southern California NHRA Finals, has been moved one week later to Nov.
13-16, 2008.

The 2008 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series will feature an 18-race
regular season, followed by a six-race NHRA POWERade Countdown to the
Championship playoff to determine POWERade world champions in Top Fuel,
Funny Car and Pro Stock.   The fields for the championship playoffs,
which will be set at the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals on Labor Day weekend,
will be expanded to the top 10 in each class, up from eight in 2007.  

In the Pro Stock Motorcycle category, the season will feature a 12-race
regular season and a five-race playoff. The top 10 riders will advance
to the championship playoffs following the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals.

 Similar to last year’s format, and after the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals,
championship playoff competitors will have their points readjusted and
separated in 10 point increments.  However, points leaders in each of
the four professional classes after the regular season will be awarded
with a 20-point bonus, increasing their leads over the second place
qualifiers to 30 points.  Thus, first place in the standings will begin
the Countdown to 1 with 2,090 points; second place with 2,060 points
and so on to 10th place starting with 1,980 points.


With Evan Knoll out of
racing while recovering from the affects of a head injury, a special email has
been established so race fans can extend their well-wishes during this recovery
period. These emails will be delivered to Evan’s family as well as posted on
Torco’s CompetitionPlus.com.



Team owner Don Prudhomme and owner/driver Tim Wilkerson announced an
alliance for the upcoming 2008 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing season. While
Snake Racing will field a car in the Top Fuel category and Tim
Wilkerson will campaign a Funny Car, the new coalition will create the
ability for the two teams to share resources and discuss tuning
decisions, while generating new opportunities for their sponsors.

"Tim has always been a really good guy and a solid competitor,"
Prudhomme said. "I know he has a good relationship with (Snake Racing
crew chiefs) Donnie Bender and Todd Smith and both teams have always
been quick to lend each other a helping hand. For 2008, I wanted to
strengthen the relationship between our teams and create opportunities
for our dragster and Tim's Funny Car program."

Team Wilkerson Racing has been one of the few remaining single-car
teams on the NHRA circuit, while amassing five national event wins,
including the prestigious Mac Tools U.S. Nationals. Wilkerson has the
unique distinction of being team owner, driver, and crew chief of his
team, earning him high respect from his peers.


Matt Smith knows the ups and down of racing, from winning his first race at Indy in 2005 then just two
days later having it taken away to winning his first NHRA Championship in dramatic style in 2007.
Therefore when Matt Smith along with all other Torco backed teams received a phone call letting him know
that Torco Race Fuels would be suspending their funds for the 2008 race
season, Smith put on his game face and started looking at what he could
do to get his winning team out there in 2008.