• Featured Image US Bounty Hunters named sponsor of IHRA Mountain Motor Pro Stock class

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    IRG Sports + Entertainment™ (IRG) and the International Hot Rod Association™ (IHRA) announced today that US Bounty Hunters, a high-stakes reality television show airing on Destination America, has been named the official class sponsor for the IHRA Mountain Motor Pro Stock class and Official Bounty Hunters of IHRA.

    Following a successful return to competition with IHRA in 2014, the extremely popular Mountain Motor Pro Stock division will once again be a major part of the IHRA’s Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series™ (NJDRS) in 2015. Featuring 800+ cubic inch power plants and side-by-side, 220 mph racing on the quarter-mile, IHRA’s Mountain Motor Pro Stock class provides the kind of wild and unpredictable racing that makes its pairing with the US Bounty Hunters team such a perfect fit.

    “We are pleased to welcome US Bounty Hunters to the IHRA. While certainly a unique partnership, it is one we are very excited about as the dedication and excitement that the US Bounty Hunters bring on their show matches the intensity and unpredictability of the IHRA’s Mountain Motor Pro Stock class,” said Steven Cole, IHRA Vice President of Corporate Partnerships. “Fred (Slack) and the folks at US Bounty Hunters attended the IHRA Summit World Finals earlier this year and were more than impressed with the fans, racers and atmosphere of the Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series and wanted to be a part of the series going forward. I could think of no better way to bring our great racing series and US Bounty Hunters together than to make them a part of one of our most popular classes.”

    Airing on Destination America, US Bounty Hunters is a fast-paced, reality television show that takes its viewers on a journey into the dramatic, high-stakes world of a unique breed of law enforcement – Fugitive Recovery Agents. US Bounty Hunters follows “The Enforcer” Fred Slack, “The Huntress” Denise Mirro and the entire team as they track down some of the most dangerous fugitives in the United States.

    In 2015, US Bounty Hunters will team with IHRA in presenting the Mountain Motor Pro Stock class, as well as being named the Official Bounty Hunters of the IHRA. In addition, US Bounty Hunters will adorn the side of the 2014 Chevrolet Camaro Pro Stock car of Kevin Bealko as the primary sponsor for the Black Diamond Motorsports team.

    “We are so proud to be a part of IHRA. One of our determining factors when deciding to become a sponsor of IHRA is the unique, up close and personal relationships that IHRA builds with the fans. Fans truly feel like they are part of the racing experience,” said Fred Slack with US Bounty Hunters. “Shortly after Steve (Cole) wowed us on what IHRA has to offer our brand, we decided to come full circle and sponsor one of the top classes the sport in Pro Stock. We are also excited to partner with one of the top teams in that class in Black Diamond Motorsports with Kevin Bealko and John DeFlorian. With this perfect marriage, we are committed to making this partnership successful and continue growing our brand.”

    Debuting with the IHRA in the early 70s as one of its original classes, the US Bounty Hunters Mountain Motor Pro Stock once again calls the IHRA home as the series showcases eight-car qualified fields and traditional eliminations at most of the events on the 2015 IHRA Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series schedule.

    Fans will see members of the US Bounty Hunters team at select events throughout the NJDRS season as fans of both series prepare for a wild ride in 2015.

    “We are proud to join IHRA, an icon in the world of motorsports. We are also proud to sponsor the incredibly exciting Pro Stock class and adorn the side of Kevin Bealko and the Black Diamond Motorsports team. Much like IHRA’s hands-on treatment with the fans, Black Diamond Motorsports gives their fans the same attention that fans of racing want more of,” said Denise Mirro with US Bounty Hunters. “We believe we are a perfect match. While US Bounty Hunters takes you inside the fast lane of the craziest bounty hunter chases, IHRA and its Mountain Motor Pro Stock class take you on a ride you won’t forget right down the track. We are thrilled with what the future holds for all of us and look forward to celebrating many wins, both on and off the track.”

    Learn more about the US Bounty Hunters at www.usbountyhunters.com. And for more information on the IHRA and the Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series, visit www.ihra.com.



  • Featured Image 2014 Nitro Jam Pro Stock Champion – Cary Goforth

    Winning a championship, that is certainly no easy task in the high-stakes world of professional drag racing. Winning two? Now you are getting into something special. Winning two championships on the same day? Well, there really aren’t many ways to describe such a monumental feat. Winning five championships with four different sanctioning bodies? Who is this guy?

    The racer in question is none other than Holdenville, Oklahoma’s very own Cary Goforth. A three-time Pro Stock World Champion entering the 2014 season, Goforth added two more championships to his resume this year including his most prized possession yet – an IHRA championship. But it was how he won those championships that made headlines.
    Goforth entered the final weekend of the IHRA and PDRA racing seasons as the points leader with both organizations. Needing to at least start both races to clinch the championships, Goforth began the World Finals weekend in Richmond, Virginia on a Friday night, getting the start in one car before flying back to Memphis, Tennessee to make the start and finish the weekend at the Summit Racing Equipment World Finals at Memphis International Raceway the following day.

    That overnight haul helped Goforth clinch both championships, giving him five for his career. But it was his championship with IHRA, known as home of the Mountain Motor Pro Stock division, which really made the year special.

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    “It has been a special year, no doubt about it. We took on an ambitious schedule, from helping Richie Stevens in NHRA for a few races, to getting my daughter a new Junior Dragster and taking on a schedule racing with two organizations, the situation just presented itself and we decided to go for it,” Goforth said. “Winning two championships, of course that is a hard thing to do. And winning two on the same weekend, I am not sure many people will ever have an opportunity to do something like that again. But five championships? Wow. You are getting up there with the Rickie Smiths of the world, and that is big time.

    “This is the kind of stuff, if I quit tomorrow, I can tell my grandkids about. Five championships and winning with the IHRA, something I dreamed of doing as a kid, that is really special for me.”

    By making the start in Memphis, Goforth formally clinched the IHRA Pro Stock World Championship, holding off the Black Diamond Motorsports duo of John DeFlorian and Kevin Bealko in the process. Unfortunately, the circumstances surrounding the double race weekend left Goforth in an unfamiliar car and an unfortunate first round exit in the race, putting a slight damper on an otherwise successful weekend.

    “When we got to Memphis I jumped in the GXP because our Camaro was on the way, which took some adjusting. And because we made our qualifying pass in the GXP, I couldn’t get out of that car,” Goforth said. “We ended up losing in the first round, which I really would like to have had back, but it was still a great weekend. We actually ended up finding what was wrong with the car later in the weekend, so there were a lot of good things to take away from Memphis. Getting the car down the track, winning the championship, doing what we needed to do Friday night and getting enough points, it was quite a weekend.”

    While Goforth wasn’t able to escape a disappointing first round exit in the finale, he was able to capture three wins on the season. Goforth had wins at the season-opening Southwestern Nationals in Tucson, Arizona, followed by wins at the Southern Nationals at Bradenton Motorsports Park and a win in the rain-delayed Pittsburgh Nationals, completed later at U.S. 131 Motorsports Park.

     

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    On the year Goforth accumulated 829 points, 75 points clear of second place DeFlorian. Both Goforth and DeFlorian spent the majority of the season trading the championship lead, with never more than a couple rounds difference between them.

    DeFlorian and his Black Diamond Motorsports teammate Kevin Bealko, who finished third in the championship standings, had two wins and seven total finals on the year in their AMSOIL-sponsored Camaros. DeFlorian also rewrote the Pro Stock history books, setting both ends of the class record with a 6.224-second elapsed time at 226.70 mph set at San Antonio Raceway in March.

    Goforth’s teammate Todd Hoerner finished fourth in the standings, with former IHRA champion Pete Berner rounding out the top five. Goforth Racing patriarch Dean Goforth finished sixth.

    In addition to an exciting championship battle, the season was a success in a number of ways, including the much-anticipated return of the Pro Stock class to its rightful home with the IHRA.

    “Everything is starting to turn around for this class, which is pretty exciting,” Goforth said. “The support we have received has been exceptional. We are really trying to show our support for this class and the IHRA in bringing Mountain Motor Pro Stock Racing back to the forefront and where it belongs with the IHRA.”

    Goforth attributes much of the success of this year and his previous championships to his father, Dean, who has helped keep the Goforth Racing Team at the top of the Pro Stock world for some time. In fact, the team fielded a competitive three-car operation in 2014 in two different series, with all three teams finishing in the top six in IHRA points.

    And it was Dean who was the driving force behind the ambitious schedule that resulted in one of the most unlikely endings you will ever see.

    “It was something we certainly didn’t want to have happen, but the closer we got to the end of the year, we knew we were going to end up having to do the double,” Goforth said. “It costs a lot of money to get a plane from here to there; luckily I have a dad who is as crazy as any 20-year-old trying to do this. He always thinks outside of the box and I am appreciative of that.

    “Everything he has done for us has been a blessing. It was crazy. Three cars, multiple series and to end it all flying from Virginia to Memphis for two different races, what a year.”

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  • Featured Image No Rest for XPS Champ Cary Goforth

    cgoforthAfter winning two Championships in two different organizations in one weekend one might think that Cary Goforth is off on a much-deserved vacation. Instead, the driver of the Dean’s Casing Service Camaro is doing more of what got him to this level of success. He’s testing at his local track, already working toward 2015.

     

    When bad weather ended his hopes of securing his PDRA Extreme Pro Stock Championship at Dragstock XI, Goforth knew he was heading for what he calls “controlled chaos”. In order to ensure his domination in both the PDRA and IHRA Goforth needed to qualify at both organization’s final events. Being in two places at once is improbable at best, but for the Goforth family it wasn’t entirely impossible. More rain in the forecast at Richmond made things trickier still, but the father and son duo were determined to beat the odds.

     

    Cary managed a qualifying run at Richmond on Saturday that clinched his role as the first ever PDRA XPS Champion. Then he and crew chief Jeff Dobbins flew straight to Memphis where they made it just in time for their final qualifying session for the IHRA event.

     

    “We were hauling the mail,” relayed Cary. “We got off the plane in Memphis. Dad and the TV people were there. We got our stuff off the plane and went right over to the track. I walked in the trailer, put my fire suit on was right out the door to the staging lanes. If we were 10 minutes later we wouldn’t have made it.

     

    “In hindsight that weekend doesn’t seem like such a big deal, but all this running back and forth really started at Rockingham even before it started to rain. Maybe it was all in my mind because I wanted it to be over, but it just didn’t seem like things were going fast enough to get the race done in time. Plus we were having some issues with the car. Of course we found [the issue] Saturday night in the last qualifier. We barely got in, and that was another nail biter there. They called us up to the lanes for first round knowing it was about to rain. I needed to get that round in [for the Championship] but it didn’t happen. Then I have a month to stress out over that. Then we got to Virginia and it actually went as smooth as it possibly could have, other than the rain. We made our qualifier and we knew we were going to be in, and I thought it was done. But then when I was talking to people about loading the car up, I found out the person I had adding the points up for me was adding an extra round per race. Then we thought that Pluchino still had a chance of catching me. But Bob [Harris, PDRA Race Director] assured me there was no way he could catch me now.

     

    “With the way the events worked out with the rain delays we almost came back to Richmond to try to finish that race just in case there was still a chance Pluchino could catch me. But they ended up running in Virginia before we could have got there. We came within an inch of coming back. It was crazy.

     

    “Looking back at it, it seems like it all went pretty smooth, but at the time it didn’t seem smooth. It just couldn’t happen fast enough for me. The only time I got really bad edgy this year was Rockingham and Richmond. It’s just impossible to be two places at once, but we did everything we could. It was organized chaos. That’s about the only way I can describe it. It’s something I don’t ever care to do again.”

     

    With the chaos behind him and Championships in hand, Goforth is able to set aside the nerves, reflect and be grateful.

     

    “Dad told me that this is something that’s not going to happen to many people,” he continued. “I’m very proud of that, but I try to keep things in perspective. Things can turn on a dime and you can have one of those years you don’t want to have. I’m very proud of it, though, that’s for sure. I’m very appreciative of that situation and the opportunities we’ve had. I think it took about five years off my life, but it might be worth it.

     

    “We all thank God and I thank God first and foremost for everything, even though I may be one of the biggest sinners and screwups on earth. I believe in Christ and I don’t have to worry about that part of it. But I don’t believe the Lord gives you round wins. I pray for safety. I don’t pray for round wins. But I do believe that it takes some God-given talent to drive all these cars that we wield. That goes for everybody. You just can’t do it without some help from above. That’s what I thank the Lord for, that and for all the safety, everybody’s safety.

     

    “I want to also thank my mom and dad for sure, my family, my kids and all the family support I have. My mom and my sister take turns watching my daughter. Of course, my crew, Jeff Dobbins.  Everybody knows that story by now, but there’s not too many people outside of my team that really knows what kind of bad situation we got put in. I definitely have to thank Jeff and Cindy and Jeffrey for coming on. Also my brother Chris, Jason Roberts, Keith Harr and everybody that’s helped us.

     

    “I can’t leave out our sponsors – everybody at Dean’s Casing Service, Pay Pro who is actually our payroll service, Lithium Pros Batteries, Alan Cape at Flying A Motorsports for everything he does for us, and I definitely want to thank Jerry Haas for a great car and Sonny Leonard for the horsepower. I’ve had a lot of support from all these people.”

     

    Although the dust from the season’s end hasn’t even settled yet, Team Goforth is already working toward 2015 and Cary wants the competition to know he’s not looking to let up anytime soon: “I just want everybody to know that nobody knows when their last day of doing this stuff is. So Thursday and Friday we’re going to Tulsa to test some stuff we’re working on. I’m not letting up on these guys. We’re starting 2015 in a couple of days. They better be up on the wheel because we’re going to be there. I need a nap but I ain’t getting one.”

     

    For more on the world’s premier eighth mile drag racing organization visit www.pdra660.com. Follow the PDRA: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube.



  • Featured Image Cale Aronson Wins Rockingham event at VMP

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    It took five weeks, four rain delays and racing at two tracks in neighboring states, but the all-eighth-mile Professional Drag Racers Association (PDRA) finally crowned winners of its postponed Dragstock event from North Carolina’s Rockingham Dragway Oct. 12, at Virginia Motorsports Park (VMP), near Richmond.

    PETERSBURG, Va. - Summary of eliminations in Extreme Pro Stock at the 2014 Professional Drag Racers Association Tour, PDRA Dragstock XI:

    Round 1:
    
    Richard Penland, Belmont NC, '10 Mustang, Right lane, (0.186) 4.084 178.21 was unopposed
    
    Doug Kirk, Lenore WV, '13 Mustang, Right lane, (0.062) 4.729 126.77 def. Trevor Eman, Pos Chiquito AW, '11 Mustang, NT-No Show
    
    John Pluchino, Commack NY, '06 Escort, Right lane, (0.050) 4.135 176.35 def. Brian Gahm, Lucasville OH, '13 Mustang, (0.093) 5.200
    109.31
    
    John Montecalvo, Center Moriches NY, '14 Camaro, Right lane, (4.126) 17.493 177.16 def. Cale Aronson, Chillicothe MO, '10 Mustang,
    (0.064) 88.000 41.07
    
    
    Round 2:
    
    C Aronson, Right lane, (0.108) 4.148 173.67 def. D Kirk, NT-Broke Before Staging
    
    R Penland, Right lane, (0.113) 4.615 162.57 def. J Pluchino, (0.081) 9.394 79.16
    
    
    Round 3:
    
    C Aronson, Right lane, (0.062) 4.100 174.45 def. R Penland, (0.114) 4.729 138.66
    
     Low ET:    Dean Goforth 4.076 seconds
     Top Speed: Richard Penland 178.21 MPH


  • Featured Image IHRA wraps up 2014 season with crowning of champions at IHRA Summit World Finals

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    Finally in Pro Stock, Cary Goforth did the unthinkable by winning two championships in one weekend with the IHRA and PDRA racing series. Goforth made the start Friday in Richmond, Va. with the PDRA, clinching the championship with that organization, before boarding a plane and maing the trip back to Memphis, Tenn. for the IHRA World Finals. When Goforth secured his spot in the field in Memphis, Goforth officially clinched his second Pro Stock championship of the weekend and fifth overall title in the class.

    “Crazy is a good description for this weekend. It was certainly not the most ideal of situations, but we knew this is something we had to do,” Goforth said. “We knew when we took on this ambitious schedule that this was a possibility, but luckily I have a dad who is just as crazy as any 20-year-old trying to do this. He likes to think outside of the box and I am appreciative of that. Everything he has done for us has been a blessing.”

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    Despite the ultimate outcome of the weekend, Goforth ended up going out in the first round, setting the stage for a final between Brad Waddle and Kevin Bealko. Bealko left early on the tree, handing Waddle his second win of the season. But it was Goforth’s amazing ride that captured headlines on Sunday.

    “I don’t know if something like this is ever going to happen again, so we are really going to embrace this,” Goforth added. “What really hit me was winning five championships, that is really something special. There are not a lot of people who can say that. That is the big time and that is really what hits home for me.”

    Pro Stock – Brad Waddle, Salina, Kan., ’13 Mustang, 9.473, 96.42 def. Kevin Bealko, Bridgeport, W.Va., ’14 Camaro, foul



  • Featured Image DeFlorian lead qualifying on soggy opening day at IHRA Summit World Finals

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    The IHRA Summit Racing Equipment World Finals kicked off on Friday with one round of Nitro Jam professional qualifying and one round of eliminations for most sportsman classes until Mother Nature took over on a soggy evening at Memphis International Raceway.

    In Pro Stock John DeFlorian, driver of the AMSOIL-sponsored Black Diamond Motorsports 2012 Camaro, placed his machine in first on a tricky track with a 7.482-second lap at 142.42 mph. His teammate Kevin Bealko was second with an 8.295 at 118.16.

    Cary Goforth, driver of the Goforth Racing entry, was Friday’s other big storyline, flying from Richmond, Virginia – where he wrapped up the PDRA championship earlier in the day – to qualify for the IHRA Summit World Finals in his attempt to wrap up two separate championships in one weekend. Goforth currently has a 99-point lead over DeFlorian.