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HALSEY CONTINUES TO DOMINATE PRO NITROUS FIELD IN 2021

 

Defending world champion Jim Halsey remains at the front of the Professional Drag Racers Association’s (PDRA) Switzer Dynamics Pro Nitrous class after qualifying No. 1 at all four races this season. With four races remaining on the 2021 PDRA schedule, Halsey has all but locked up another Nitrous Wars presented by Structural Concrete title for his team and engine builder Gene Fulton. 
 
“Nitrous Wars presented by Structural Concrete has been a show of dominance at the halfway point of the year,” said Tyler Crossnoe, race director, PDRA. “Jim Halsey, Brandon Switzer and Fulton Racing Engines have flexed their muscles through the first four races. Pat Musi, Charlie Buck, Sandy Wilkins, Billy Albert and others are not too keen of this and have been in their respective shops working hard for the remainder of the 2021 chase. We at the PDRA look forward to seeing the world’s best bottle-fed racers battle it out four more times until a world champion is crowned.”

EVEN WITH A CAREER OF INVALUABLE SERVICE TO DRAG RACING, KEPNER WAS SHOCKED BY HIS APPOINTMENT TO HALL OF FAME

 

Suppose there's a statistical question that has virtually all of the drag racing community scratching its head. In that case, there's a good chance noted historian and iconic announcer Bret Kepner has it stored away in the back of his mind for safekeeping.

Back in March, the day before the NHRA Gatornationals was set to kick off the 2021 season, Kepner was inducted into the International Drag Racing Hall of Fame. Even after giving his acceptance speech, Kepner remains surprised he was considered for such a prestigious appointment.

"I was really, really shocked when I got that phone call from [Don] Garlits," Kepner said on a recent episode of the CompetitionPlus Power Hour. "And that would've been Labor Day of last year. I did not know that I was on the ballot, and therefore, it was really goofy when he called me up. And one of the first questions I asked was why? Obviously, there's a trillion people far more worthy than me to be in that group. To be inducted into any Hall of Fame is an incredible honor. I'm lucky enough to be in a couple of others, but this one's special.

TOP FUEL DRIVER GREG CARRILLO EXCITED ABOUT LONG-AWAITED RETURN TO MILE-HIGH NATIONALS

 

 

Greg Carrillo has raced countless events at Bandimere Speedway in Morrison, Colo., over the years. It is his home track, just 90 minutes from his race shop headquarters in Fort Morgan, Colo.

However, Carrillo didn’t get to compete at Thunder Mountain, as it is known, in 2020 because the race was canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Mile-High Nationals are back this year – July 16-18 – and Carrillo is thrilled to be competing there in his Top Fuel dragster.

NEW PRI MEMBERSHIP PROGRAM EXPECTED TO UNITE RACING INDUSTRY

 

 
Racers and motorsports enthusiasts can join an exclusive community whose mission is to build, promote, and protect the racing industry.
 
Performance Racing Industry (PRI), producer of world-class trade events and media, is launching the racing industry's first of its kind membership program on July 13, 2021. This will make it possible for racers and enthusiasts to join racing businesses in a groundbreaking movement to protect and grow the industry.
 
PRI Membership allows the racing community to showcase their passion and pride for the industry. By uniting the industry, PRI is actively working to address challenges and needs, such as providing support for racetracks to prevent them from closing, advocacy for the racing community against current legal threats, and educational programs that help businesses and racers succeed.

THE THIRD GEN OF JOHN FORCE RACING MOVES INTO A BIG CAR

 

Three-time NHRA Funny Car world champion, Robert Hight, has enjoyed tremendous success throughout his drag racing career. When his daughter, Autumn, decided to push her own driving skills to the next level, he made sure that she got the same great instruction from Frank Hawley’s Drag Racing School just like he did when he was younger.

Robert first attended the School in 2003 to complete its Super Comp course, then returned in 2004 to obtain his Top Alcohol Funny Car license. Having started with John Force Racing over a quarter-of-a-century ago as a crew man but knowing right from the beginning that Funny Car was his destination, Robert worked hard to achieve his goal.

“I still remember being surprised at how difficult it was to drive a Super Comp car. It was a really humbling experience for me,” shared Robert of his rookie experience nearly a decade prior, which included much more than just on-track driving. “I believe that Frank Hawley’s class has been instrumental to my achievements and in my career. Frank has a lot of knowledge and experience. If you pay attention, you’ll learn a lot of life lessons, too.”

HILTON’S TRIAL BY FIRE IS AN EYE-OPENER

 

Tyler Hilton knew from the moment he climbed behind the wheel of the Hilton/Lee Family Great Expectations Nostalgia Top Fuel dragster that fire was very much a possibility. 

At the NHRA Holley Hot Rod Reunion hosted by Beech Bend drag strip in Bowling Green, Ohio, Hilton experienced one of the worst efires any driver in racing seen in a front motored  Top Fuel car in decades. 

During the opening round alongside of Adam Sorokin, Hilton engine suffered a catastrophic failure. There was a decomposition of internal parts which ended up compromising the valley of the manifold so the whole lifter valley of the engine was exposed so when the oil, fuel, air and spark ensued, resulting in a massive conflagration.

PRO STOCK DRIVER KYLE KORETSKY HOPES TO USE NORWALK AS SPRINGBOARD

 

 

Following a solid first season in NHRA’s Pro Stock class in 2020, Kyle Koretsky keeps reducing his learning curve.

Through seven races in 2021, Korestsky is eighth in the points standings in NHRA’s Camping World Series. He had advanced to the semifinals in two of the last three events in Houston and Norwalk, Ohio, losing to Deric Kramer and Erica Enders, respectively.

“I felt good going into the weekend, my confidence was huge,” Koretsky said. “I had been struggling on the tree and we made some changes on the car, clutch pedal wise, and I think we got it somewhat right. We just behind the eight ball on the tune-up a little bit. We struggled in Epping (N.H.) with some suspension stuff and we were trying to dial-in the tune-up with only getting two runs in qualifying in Norwalk.”

NEOPMA COMING TO EMPIRE DRAGWAY

 

Two historic New York drag racing institutions will join forces in late July, as the Northeast Outlaw Pro Mod Association has teamed up with Empire Dragway to host the Northeast Outlaw Pro Mod Challenge, July 30-31. The eighth-mile series will bring its brand of Pro Modified racing to Empire for the first time in the club’s 29-year history. 
 
“We’re excited to venture this far north and expect to have one of the best Pro Mod events in Empire's history,” said John Mazzorana, founder and president, NEOPMA. “We hope to have more than enough cars to complete a 16-car field, as well as a consolation race for an additional eight cars.”
 
Since its first season in 1992, NEOPMA has grown and evolved to match the interests of its racers and fans. The group switched to eighth-mile competition in 2020 after more than 25 years as the longest continually operating quarter-mile Pro Mod organization in the country. The switch has proven successful, with 20-plus cars showing up to race for a spot in the 16-car fields. 

IT'S A FAREWELL TOUR (SORT OF) FOR ANTRON

 

It is the elephant in the room. Or in this case, the new team in the pits.

Antron Brown is gearing up to leave Don Schumacher Racing after a long and storied run with the company, winning championships with the team in 2012, 2015 and 2016.

Brown, who has 52 wins in Top Fuel, will be starting up his own operation in 2022 under the banner of the AB Motorsports Top Fuel team. Brown will be taking with him his entire operation and crew as the team ventures out into the wild, wild west of team ownership.

ERICA UP FOR ANOTHER ESPY AWARD

 

 

NHRA’s four-time and reigning Pro Stock champion, Erica Enders, has been nominated for the 2020 ESPYS Best Driver Award.
 
Enders claimed the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series championship last season to deem her the winningest NHRA female champion, with four world titles to her name.

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