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


(8-12-2006) - Thirteen-time Funny Car champion
and budding A&E real life television star John Force is the provisional
qualifying leader at the 25th annual Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals. Force drove his
Castrol GTX Ford Mustang down Brainerd International Raceway in 4.773 seconds at
323.74 mph to take a big step towards his 130th career No. 1 qualifying effort.


(8-11-2006) - Probably more entertaining than the race
itself is the campground at Brainerd International Raceway. Torco's
CompetitionPlus.com photographer Roger Richards and managing editor Brian Wood
survived the atmosphere known as "The Zoo". The dynamic duo reported they
witnessed a few alcoholic beverages consumed during their tour of duty as well
as several potential Best Engineered awards. THE ZOO PHOTO GALLERY.


Services for NHRA Super Comp and
IHRA Quick Rod racer Rockey Keyes will be held Friday August 11th at 7:00 p.m.
at the Crespo Funeral Home located at 4136 Broadway St. Houston, TX 77087. The
phone number to Crespo Funeral Home is 713-644-3831. The website to the funeral
home is crespofunerals.com.


Torco Race Fuels, a major sponsor
on the IHRA eMax Drag racing tour, will expand their marketed brands to included
one of their sponsored properties – major internet drag racing magazine

Torco Race Fuel’s CompetitionPlus.com will be assigned to the
Knoll Gas – Torco Race Fuels Pro Modified and Pro Stock classes as well the
accompanying $102,000 Shootout and Showdown.

Evan Knoll, owner of the Knoll Gas – Torco Race Fuels group, says
the decision was his to make.

“You would have to search long and hard to find a more dedicated
group than the people at CompetitionPlus.com,” Knoll said. “They never stop when
it comes to staying ahead of the program. Before Torco Race Fuels became the
title sponsor, I was a huge fan of the website and I’m even more so now. Bobby
Bennett and his group bring to the table a huge amount of resources that can
only help our special programs.”


(8-7-2006) - Here's a look at Troy Coughlin's new turbocharged Pontiac Grand-am. It is rumored to be headed to the IHRA with the legalization of turbochargers in the Pro Modified class.


(8-7-2006) – Troy Critchley put the Dr. Moon’s Rage AMS ’57 Chevy in the sand, and in the air, at the end of his qualifying attempt on Friday, and in an interview with John Waldie and 1320 TV he explained what happened and how he managed to walk away from the scary crash with no ill effects.

“We seem to be testing the boundaries right now,” he said. “Our other car, the ’70 Cuda, has been 237 miles an hour three times now, but the second time we did it we had problems with the chutes. The chutes went down under the car and wrapped around the rear-end, actually. It’s pretty hard to pull one of these things up – 2700 pounds at 237 miles an hour.

“The Cuda is in the chassis shop, so we put the engine out of it into the ’57. On the pass, I rolled the lights, so I didn’t get a time, but by the computer it did 235 plus, and it had trouble with the chutes again. They crossed over and wrapped themselves around the wheelie bar. It was going too fast and I couldn’t get it stopped. If you had a mile or two you might be able to get it stopped. I thought it was going to slide through the sand, but a header dug in and it flipped once in the air and it landed on all fours again.

I spent the last month getting used to a HANS device. It felt a little awkward to start with but my hat goes off to those guys. I flipped a car yesterday and I’m not sore anywhere. (Check out the entire video at 1320 TV.com)

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(8-7-2006) - For drag racers, it’s burnouts, shifting gears and parachute pops – but this weekend in Martin Funny Car driver Mike Ashley will be moving to a different beat, adding his own creative flair. Along with his Sponsor, Evan Knoll, Ashley and his team were involved in the shooting of a music video with a drag-racing theme.
Having captured the attention of all drag racing fans with their “Go Hard or Go Home” song which is featured on NHRA POWERade drag racing telecasts on ESPN2, The Formula Project will compile drag racing footage for their new rap/hip-hop song “The Choice.”
Ashley was so impressed with the Formula Project the first time he heard their song that he jumped at the opportunity to become one of the band’s sponsors.
“I fell in love with their songs the first time I heard them because the lyrics embrace everything I believe in life  -- whether it’s in racing or whatever you do,” Ashley said. “Our team marches to the beat of those lyrics and I know Evan Knoll and the Torco team does the same. That’s why I got involved in the project.”

Castellana Back in Winner’s Circle; 2005 Knoll Gas-Torco Pro Mod World Champion wins Torco Pro Mod S

8-5-2006) - Mike Castellana flexed his muscles with great regularity last season, winning four of the last six IHRA national events en route to his first career Knoll Gas-Torco Pro Modified World Championship.

This season Castellana has found the going a little tougher as he had not visited the Winner’s Circle before the 25 th Annual Torco Racing Fuels Northern Nationals at US 131 Motorsports Park. Things all came together for Castellana during the Torco Pro Modified Shootout, however, as the Westbury, N.Y. resident topped Quain Stott in the final to collect the $20,000 winner’s check. It was the first significant victory for Castellana this season and, he hopes, a springboard toward better things the rest of the season. His 6.141 at 232.31 mph put him in front as Stott posted a 6.161/232.96.

“This feels great,” Castellana said. “We’ve kind of struggled this year and it has nothing to do with nitrous cars or blower cars, we just kind of struggled to find our combination that we had last year. Things really came together at the right time this weekend. We’re thrilled with this. We needed a little shot in the arm to get things going, now we feel like we have things headed in the right direction. Hopefully we can keep it going.”


(8-4-2006) - Drawing on the excitement and spectacle of the former Screamin’ Eagle Nitro Harley-Davidson class the IHRA contested from 1998 – 2002, the sanctioning body announced the addition of the Nitro Cycles as an exhibition class during this year’s Skull Shine World Nationals presented by ACDelco at Norwalk Raceway Park, August 24 – 27.


The Nitro Cycle class will consist of six riders: Steve Stordeur, Jay Turner, Mike Romine, Mark Cox, Bill Furr and Mike Lehman. All accomplished competitors, the riders will make one pass Friday night and two passes Saturday.


“The Nitro Cycle class has always been a fan favorite and will be an exciting addition to one of IHRA’s biggest events,” said IHRA president Aaron Polburn. “By including Nitro Funny Cars to the eMax Drag Racing Series this year, and now the motorcycles to the World Nationals, the event will offer a unique mix of vehicles and one of the strongest nitro-burning fields anywhere.


“No matter how many times I see one of these motorcycles blaze down the track at 220 mph in just over 6-seconds, it never gets old,” added Polburn.


Each of the six riders have made major contributions to the motorcycle racing world. Many have held top-ten positions in the IHRA or other sanctioning bodies, including the AHDRA.


Jay Turner, Burlington , N.C. , is a two-time IHRA world champion with five top-ten finishes. Steve Stordeur, Goshen , Ohio , finished 2nd in the IHRA point standings three straight years, one of which came the last year IHRA ran motorcycles in 2002, and has two AHDRA championships. Mark Cox, Wilkesboro , N.C. , was the 1998 AHDRA Pro Drag champion and has one IHRA top-ten finish.


“When I competed with IHRA before, it provided a great showcase for the motorcycles,” said Cox. “It elevated the class in front of a very high profile audience, which helps us obtain sponsorship and creates a lot more awareness. Exposure is what we need, and IHRA offers the right demographic and audience.


“It seems like a real nature fit with IHRA,” added Cox. “I’m excited with what the show has to offer this year with their Top Fuel and Nitro Funny Car class. I’m just thrilled to be racing with IHRA again. We are treated like professionals, given a high-caliber track to race on, and it’s something we’ve really missed. I’ve seen the sport not really grow that much since the class came to an end in 2002. I’ve always been a believer that this is where we need to be.”


Mike Romine, Sturgis , Mich. , is the defending and current AHDRA Top Fuel points leader and has five IHRA top-ten finishes. Bill Furr, Orangeburg , S.C. , has 4 IHRA top-ten finishes, including a 2nd and 3rd. Mike Lehman, West Palm Beach, Fla. , is the current AHDRA Pro Fuel ET and Speed record holder at 6.583/208.67.


The Skull Shine World Nationals presented by ACDelco, the eighth event on the 2006 eMax Drag Racing Series, will be held at Norwalk Raceway Park , Norwalk , Ohio , August 24-27. For more information, log onto www.ihra.com.


(8-4-2006) – The Lyn St. James Foundation recognized the late Barbara Parks’ achievements in the world of NHRA drag racing today by presenting the Mildred Marcum Pioneer Award in her honor during the fourth annual Women in the Winner’s Circle luncheon at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Mrs. Parks, wife of NHRA founder Wally Parks and a driving force behind the early successes of the 54-year-old sanctioning body, succumbed to cancer in late January after a long battle with the devastating illness. In contrast to the many women who take the much deserved spotlight as a result of their untiring efforts to contribute to the progress of automotive hobbies and racing, Mrs. Parks, by her own choice remained in the background. But she was a force — an important, determined and very creative influence — in the earliest days of the founding of hot rodding and, of course, the National Hot Rod Association and championship drag racing.

She was active to the end, remaining at her husband’s side as he pursued with painstaking effectiveness the efficient operation of an NHRA museum, a monument to the sport’s illustrious history and a showcase of the archival record of NHRA drag racing. Many of the features showcased in the museum, now named for its founder as The Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum, are the product of Barbara’s vision, creativeness and talents.

The Mildred Marcum Pioneer Award annually recognizes the achievements of a woman who through her passion and dedication for many years, demonstrates how much women have contributed to the motorsports industry.

NHRA President Tom Compton accepted the prestigious award and read a statement from Barbara’s devoted husband, who was unable to attend the event.

“On behalf of Barbara and all of us at NHRA, let me express our genuine appreciation for this premium recognition and for the years of friendship she enjoyed among you – especially here in Indianapolis,” Wally Parks said in the statement. “She was a trooper – totally dedicated to a very special sport’s advancements in which the ladies have been active in important roles since day one. As she often pointed out, it was the people involved – not the race cars – that she appreciated most in five decades with NHRA. Thank you for honoring her memory with this very special tribute.”

Said Compton: “On behalf of Wally and the entire NHRA family, we want to thank Lyn St. James and the Lyn St. James Foundation for recognizing Barbara’s immeasurable contribution to the sport and honoring her with the Mildred Marcum Pioneer Award as part of the Women in the Winner’s Circle Luncheon. The entire NHRA family owes a tremendous amount of thanks to Barbara Parks for what she accomplished and her influence on the sport will be everlasting.”