• Featured Image SAN ANTONIO NATIONALS POSTPONED; BATON ROUGE ADDED TO 2015 SCHEDULE

    The San Antonio Nationals originally scheduled for March 13 & 14, 2015 in San Antonio, Texas has been postponed. Replacing that date on the 2015 Nitro Jam Schedule will be the return of the Mardi Gras Nationals at State Capital Raceway, Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
    “Time was simply running out for a resolution that the track could reopen in time to host the San Antonio Nationals in March,” said IHRA President Scott Gardner. “Our parent company, IRG Sports + Entertainment, have been in negotiations to purchase the facility for the past six months and are still pursuing the purchase of this facility. The only thing IRG was not able to confirm for us was a final timetable for the transaction, which is why we had to make this change in the schedule. We are optimistic we will return to San Antonio this fall once the ownership and direction of the facility becomes clear.”

     

    Professional classes at the Mardi Gras Nationals will include Amsoil Funny Car, Nitro Harley, U.S. Bounty Hunters Pro-Stock, Jet Dragster and exhibition runs of the Fire Force Jet Fire Truck. The sportsman program will be E.T. bracket classes.
    “We made a decision not to include the Pro-Am classes at this event namely due to a lack of notice for the Division 4 Summit Pro-Am competitors” continued Peaco. “We have handled a lot of calls from Texas racers regarding the San Antonio date and I really didn’t want to throw a venue change at the Division 4 competitors this late in the planning process. I know with the uncertainty of San Antonio’s reopening date many racers may have made other plans for that weekend. We will open the Division 4 Summit Pro-Am season at Pine Valley March 27-29 as scheduled. When we return to San Antonio in the fall we will put the event back together and we can give all the competitors plenty of notice on the new national event date.”
    State Capital Raceway, located in southern Louisiana returns to the IHRA Nitro Jam schedule after a 2 year hiatus. The quarter-mile dragstrip features 660′ concrete launch pads, concrete barrier walls, Compulink timing, LED scoreboards and seating for 9,000 fans.
    “I’m very thankful that Track Manager Gary Carter called us to offer up a replacement date at the facility. Track owners Lanny and Val Lewis are some of the best people in the IHRA family and they always have the welcome mat out for IHRA. I know the professional racers love the track as it provides a great opportunity to set records with an elevation of a mere 18 feet above sea level,” said IHRA Vice President Skooter Peaco.
    The IHRA 2015 Nitro Jam season will open February 6-7 at Southwestern International Raceway in Tucson, Arizona.
    For more information on the 2015 IHRA Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series schedule and lineup, please visit www.IHRA.com for complete details.



  • Featured Image IHRA ANNOUNCES JOHN BISCI AS NEW PUBLIC RELATIONS AND MEDIA DIRECTOR

    JohnBisciThe International Hot Rod Association™ (IHRA) and IRG Sports + Entertainment™ (IRG) has named John Bisci as its new public and media relations director.

    With more than 30 years of media relations experience, Bisci will serve as the public and media relations director for IHRA Motorsports and will be the gatekeeper for all communication both internally and externally. Bisci will be responsible for all advance and on-site media relations for IHRA, Nitro Jam, Sonic Rush Tour and various other IHRA events in addition to many other responsibilities.

    “I’m very happy we found John as he has a massive amount of experience in working with the media, generating promotional programs and social media experience,” said Scott Gardner. “He will be hitting the ground running as we gear up for a very busy season.”

    “I am both pleased and proud to accept this challenging position,” Bisci said. “I am looking forward to representing this company and its thrilling style of motorsports entertainment. It will be my job to tell the IHRA’s story to the world and work with all forms of media.”

    Bisci spent the past year at Maple Grove Raceway in Mohnton, Pa., as Director of Communications.

    Bisci’s experience in media relations includes nearly 14 years (2000-2014) as Public Relations Manager for Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Prior to working in Las Vegas, Bisci spent six years working as a media specialist for NASCAR teams and sponsors in the Charlotte, N.C., area. Bisci launched his motorsports media career in 1988 and served as public relations director for three short tracks in the Northeast.

    Bisci will work alongside the staff at the IHRA’s offices in Norwalk, Ohio, and will report for duty in February.

    The IHRA’s 2015 Nitro Jam season will open Feb. 6-7 at Southwestern International Raceway in Tucson, Ariz.

    For more information, please contact the IHRA at (419) 663-6666 or visit www.IHRA.com. Follow IHRA on Twitter and Facebook.



  • Featured Image Team Aruba Comes Back for 11th Racing Season in the US

    arubamustangTeam Aruba is back for another US Drag Racing tour in their Aruba.com Ford Mustang. This season they return to the birthplace of Mountain Motor Pro Stock, the International Hot Rod Association. The 2015 IHRA season will kick off at Southwestern International Raceway in Tucson, Az. February 6-7.

     

    “IHRA has shown they have set up a great deal for the Mountain Motor Pro Stock class for 2015 with great class sponsors,” stated Team Aruba driver, Trevor Eman. “We certainly look forward to seeing what this season has in store. We’re excited to be racing quarter mile again and returning to the home for Mountain Motor Pro Stocks.

     

    “Although Extreme Pro Stock will not be with the PDRA anymore as of this year, we certainly would like to thank and congratulate the PDRA on what they have accomplished in 2014. We are grateful that they had the class in 2014,” Eman added, speaking to the organization Team Aruba competed with in 2014. Due to a split in class support across organizations, the PDRA selected not to run the Pro Stock division in 2015. Many hope that the class will be unified and grow as IHRA becomes the premier place for mountain motors to compete once again.

     

    “We’re very excited to have Pro Stock,” stated IHRA President Scott Gardner. “They came back in 2014 and now even stronger in 2015. Teams like Team Aruba, for example, are coming on board with us this year. We’re excited to have them, in particular. They’re a very professional team, representing the Ford camp and Aruba. I’ve seen them in action in the past years and it’s great to have them come home to IHRA.”

     

    “We truly believe that Mountain Motor Pro Stock needs one stable sanctioning body to compete in,” Eman added, reflecting on the recent history of his class. “Having options is nice, but we saw last year how the class only split itself between two sanctioning bodies, creating a situation where neither had full fields. Hopefully we can see 18-20+ fields and make the competition as tough as possible again. That’s what makes racing fun, exciting, and gives you the ultimate bragging rights when you get the opportunity to knock out four racers on race day.

     

    “At the end of last season we took delivery of our brand new T&E trailer, which we only got to use at the last race, so we certainly look forward to racing out of our new trailer this entire IHRA season,” Eman continued. “We’ve come a long way since we started racing back in 2004. We have been able to acquire more assets over the course of our racing career such as a spare engine, collection of specialized tools and equipment, additional transmission etc, etc. It got to the point that if the flathead screwdriver was not in the right place the trailer door wouldn’t close. It was time for a new trailer and even having gone to just one race with the new trailer last year, it made a world of difference. So, I’m sure once we get better acclimated to the new trailer this year, it will allow us to only work more efficiently during between runs maintenance.”

     

    As Team Aruba moves back to the IHRA they hope to reconnect with old fans and meet new ones, as well. Their colorful pit area and welcoming smiles are always a fan-favorite no matter what organization they’re in. This year will be no different as Team Aruba continues their main objective of making the ‘One Happy Island’ famous.

     

    “Aside from looking forward to strong competition this year, we certainly look forward to meeting as many fans as possible. We hope to get to speak to many people both about our Mountain Motor Ford Mustang, but more importantly, about our great island destination, Aruba. Hopefully we can see a successful year for Team Aruba this year and with that have our fans come visit our ‘Happy Island’, Aruba.”

     

    Keep up with Team Aruba on Facebook and Twitter. Find race results, team updates, videos and photos. Also leave your comments to cheer on Team Aruba!

     

    For more on your Aruba vacation visit www.Aruba.com and www.Destination-Magazines.com.



  • Featured Image TOUGH DECISION FOR PDRA

    After much discussion and deliberation, the PDRA is saddened to announce the retirement of the Pro Stock class for the 2015 Season.

    Unfortunately, the expected team participation in the Pro Stock Class for the 2015 season fell short of the numbers to make the Pro Stock teams a viable class in the series.

    While PDRA has not excluded adding the Class back to the roster in the future, there are no present plans for renegotiation with the teams.

    Series Director, Bob Harris commented:  “The Pro Stock Class made a great showing in our inaugural season in 2014.  However, team commitments to other series has split the division.  For the good of the racing community the PDRA will not contribute to the further division of this class.  We wish them well in their racing schedule, and would be happy to consider their addition to the PDRA class line-up in the future.”

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  • Featured Image Montecalvo Welcomes Crew Chief Tommy Lee

    jmcamarot also starting a family with his wife Ashley in their Georgia home.  With his growing family requiring greater time commitments Belfance has stepped aside from his race career and busy travel schedule. In his place, Montecalvo welcomes well known tuner and driver, Tommy Lee.

    Tommy Lee has been a fixture among both Mountain Motor and 500 cubic inch Pro Stocks for decades. With experience as both a driver and a crew chief, Lee is as well-rounded and knowledgeable as they come.  “We we are excited to have Tommy Lee on board with us; it’s a bad news/good news scenario for our team” told Montecalvo. “It’s tough to say goodbye to Justin. He was a good fit for our team and did an outstanding job for us and we wish him all the best.  We’ll miss him, but I feel very comfortable having Tommy join us as he knows his way around Mountain Motor Pro Stock.”

    Montecalvo’s car, hauler and equipment have already been relocated to Tommy Lee’s Statesville, NC based shop. The team will operate from that central location, rather than Montecalvo’s New York home. “Tommy’s shop is closer to Sonnys for us and close to some good test tracks,” said Monte. “An added bonus is that he’s an excellent driver if we need him behind the wheel to test.

    “It won’t just be Justin that we’re missing this year,” Montecalvo continued with a decidedly somber tone. “One of our long time friends lost his battle with cancer just after Christmas. Donnie Crowder was a great man, and we will all miss him terribly. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Debra and family. There is some solace in knowing he is with Shirley, Hank, Bert and all of our racing family that have passed. For sure he will still be watching over us, but from a much better view.”

    Donnie Crowder, former IHRA and PDRA official lost his battle with cancer on December 26th at the age of 63. He was laid to rest Monday, December 29th. He will be missed by many in the racing community.

    “We hope to honor Donnie’s memory throughout the 2015 season. We’re really looking forward to getting back on the race track and taking some win lights.  We want to wish all our friends a healthy and safe Happy New Year. We’ll see you soon.”



  • 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.