O’FALLON, Mo. (January 23, 2009) – For the National Guard American Drag Racing League, it just keeps getting better.
Having already established itself as the fastest growing motorsports series in the world, the National Guard ADRL continues it growth in 2009 with an eye towards the future. On the heels of the unveiling of the series’ expanded 10-race National Guard ADRL schedule, ADRL President and CEO Kenny Nowling welcomes the addition of the Extreme Pro Stock class to the ADRL family of racers.
“This may be one of the most gratifying moments in our brief history,” said Nowling. “While other series across the country are struggling to maintain the status quo, we’ve been able to add to our roster of racing
“The ADRL staff has worked diligently for the past several months to put this program together. My personal love for these cars made the task of bringing championship caliber drivers like Robert Patrick and Brian Gahm to the ADRL more of a personal crusade.”
“These cars are the quickest and fastest naturally-aspirated in all of racing,” added Nowling. “The Extreme Pro Stock class is a tailor-made addition to what is already the most entertaining show for race fans in all of motor sports.”
For Patrick, the decision to race in the ADRL was an easy one to make.
“I’ve watched the growth of the ADRL and I’m really impressed with the markets and the venues they race in,” said the Virginian, who participated in both National Guard ADRL Extreme Pro Stock exhibition events held in 2008, winning the first one at Budds Creek, MD.
“You want to showcase your car on the best track and in front of the biggest crowds. That’s what really impressed me about the ADRL, the size of the crowds and the quality of the facilities where they race.”
Gahm, who brings his decades long, race-winning career to the ADRL sees the move as an opportunity to re-energize himself and his entire team.
“I can’t remember the last time I was as excited as I was at Dragstock V last fall (in Rockingham, NC). When I looked up and saw a sea of more people than I had ever raced in front of I got the a feeling that reminded me of the excitement of when I first started racing.
“I am committed to the entire 2009 National Guard ADRL tour and like so many others, I’m thrilled to be a part of the inaugural season of Extreme Pro Stock in the ADRL.”
Beginning at the season opening Dragpalooza V at Houston Raceway Park on March 6, Extreme Pro Stock (XPS) joins the current roster of Pro Extreme, Pro Nitrous, Extreme 10.5 and Pro Extreme Motorcycle at each National Guard ADRL national event, making the ADRL the nation’s only all-professional drag racing organization.
Complete class rules and purse information will be available on www.ADRL.us, the official site of the National Guard ADRL, in the coming days.
About the National Guard
The National Guard is the oldest component of the Armed Forces of the United States and one of the nation’s longest enduring institutions. The National Guard operates in all 50 states, three territories (Puerto Rico, Guam and the Virgin Islands) and the District of Columbia. For more information on the National Guard, visit 1-800-GO-GUARD.com. The National Guard maintains an overall motorsports presence with sponsorships in the ADRL, NASCAR, IRL and AMA Superbike series.
About the ADRL
Based in O’Fallon, Missouri, the American Drag Racing League is the nation’s premier sanctioning body for the sport of eighth-mile drag racing. The five categories featured in the ADRL’s all-professional show are Extreme Pro Stock, Pro Extreme Motorcycle, Extreme 10.5, Pro Nitrous and Pro Extreme, the quickest full-bodied class in all of drag racing. The 2009 National Guard ADRL tour schedule consists of 10 national events run throughout the United States. For more information on the ADRL, visit http://www.ADRL.us
We have made some changes to the 2009 Feature event schedule. The NHRA Summit Racing Series ET Finals for Division 4 has been moved to October 8-11, 2009 and the Battle of The Brands has been moved to October 17-18.
You can view the full 2009 Texas Motorplex Event Calendar here:
O’FALLON, Mo. (January 21, 2009) – American Drag Racing League officials announced today a significant increase in prize money for the 2009 National Guard ADRL season which opens in Houston on March 6-7.
“My entire team has worked tirelessly during the off season to pursue additional partnerships to allow us to make a considerable increase to all of our professional purses,” said ADRL President and CEO Kenny Nowling.
With total prize money soaring to over $1.25 million, National Guard ADRL competitors will see an increase in qualifying and round money at each national event.
The winner’s share of the Speedtech “Battle for the Belts” at the season finale at the Texas Motorplex in October has more than doubled for each professional class. The winner and world champion will earn $50,000 in Pro Extreme, $50,000 in Pro Nitrous, $25,000 in Flowmaster Extreme 10.5 and $10,000 in Pro Extreme Motorcycle.
In addition to the increase in prize money, competitor’s membership fees have been waived. In the past, this fee was $150 annually. As always, there will continue to be no entry fees charged to ADRL competitors at national events.
“While other series continue to charge their competitors large dollar amounts to participate, we feel strongly that our racers shouldn’t have to pay us to compete in an ADRL event,” said Nowling.
“As I’ve stated several times before, as long as I am the president of this organization, our racers will never have to pay to entertain our fans.”
For additional details on the increased prize money, including a complete class-by-class purse breakdown, visit www.ADRL.us.
Sixty Four more spots available for PINKS ALL OUT are available at a “Second Chance” Qualifier & Open Test & Tune March 7th & March 14th.
One of the most compelling attractions about the Winternationals during its near half-century history has been the long line of significant drag racing vehicles that have made their debut at the traditional NHRA season opener. The diehard Ford fans, for instance, have witnessed the inaugural showings of such famed machines as the 427-cid Fairlane Thunderbolt, which Gas Ronda drove to SS/S class honors at the 1964 Winternationals, followed by Bill Lawton’s A/Factory Experimental eliminator victory the next year with Ford’s then-new SOHC 427 Mustang.
Another great moment in Ford history took place at the 1968 Winternationals, where the new 428-cid Ford Cobra Jet SS/E entries appeared for the first time, and Al Joniec drove his Rice-Holman Ford-backed entries to that event’s Super Stock title. Now, just more than four decades later, Ford is hoping that history will repeat itself with the debut of its second-generation Cobra Jet at the 49th annual Kragen O’Reilly NHRA Winternationals. This new entry, which is designated as FR500CJ, is a complete factory racing package that combines Ford’s modern-day racing technology with the car manufacturer’s rich muscle-car heritage.
Only 50 of these very special vehicles have been produced, and they have already all been sold or accounted for. The 2008 Cobra Jets were produced with white paint only and no radio or heater, and among their unique features are a 5.4L (330-cid) DOHC engine equipped with a factory supercharger rated at 425 horsepower, an aluminum hood with factory hood pins and the cold-air package hood scoop, trunk-mounted battery, line-loc, five-point safety harness, fuel-shutoff switch, custom reinforced Ford nine-inch-type rear end with aftermarket axles and spool, along with Cobra Jet unique Bogart aluminum wheels and nine-inch racing slicks, and other related items. The body and major sub-assemblies such as the dash are produced on the Mustang assembly line in Flat Rock, Mich. Body modifications and final assembly take place in Livonia, Mich., at a Roush Industries facility.
Brian Wolfe, Ford Motor Co. North America motorsports director, said, “We wanted to support Sportsman racers who have been clamoring for a late-model Ford that could be competitive and was cost-effective. These are some of our most loyal customers and help us sell new cars and trucks to their social circles. Developing a turnkey drag car to meet the racers’ demands is the first step to show our supporters and the rest of the world that we’re dedicated to Sportsman racers who campaign Fords.”
Of the initial production run of only 50 units, Wolfe said, “We want to be in this for the long haul. While demand is much higher, by offering only 50, it leaves the door open for future model years. That being said, racers can build their own Cobra Jet from any 2005-2009 Mustang with parts from the Ford Performance Parts catalog. We have assigned a part number for a body in white specific for drag racers, M-607100-CJ. We have not yet determined the pricing and what the Cobra Jet content, like the installation of a roll cage or the removal of such street-related items as the wiper bucket, will entail. This will be sorted out by spring.”
The first four new Cobra Jets, all of which are owned by noted car collector Brent Hajek, will be raced at the Winternationals in Stock: two automatic cars campaigned by JIm Waldo and Gary Stinnett and two stick-shift versions run by John Calvert and Jimmy Ronzello. In keeping with Ford’s intentions of celebrating the 40th anniversary of the original Cobra Jets, the cars will feature the lettering of four 1960s-era driver/car dealership combos: Joniec/Rice-Holman Ford; Ronda/Russ Davis Ford; Hubert Platt/Paul Harvey Ford; and Hot Rod magazine/Performance Associates (the Ford high-performance shop run by the late Ford racer Les Ritchey and currently operated by his son, Randy).
Calvert, who has raced Fords since 1974 and has owned one of the production Cobra Jets throughout this period, said, “I first got involved with this when I received calls from Hajek and Phil Mandella (who helped perform the final prep work on the two stick-shift cars). When you run a brand-new car from the factory that includes all of these racing modifications, it’s always exciting. To be included in the debut efforts of this program is pretty special.” Calvert, who has earned a reputation as one of the top rear-suspension experts in the Stock ranks throughout the years, will focus on applying the power from the potent supercharged engine to the track with the nine-inch tire limitation. Said Calvert, “The engine, with the overhead cams, supercharger, and all the new electronics, is somewhat foreign to me. I’ll let Randy Ritchey take care of that while I work on what I’m more familiar with.”
Said Ritchey, “This project is a dream come true for me. My father was assigned by Ford to do all the final pre-Winternationals tune-up work on the Ford factory team cars, ranging from the 390-cid and 406-cid Galaxies in the early 1960s to the SOHC 427 Mustang A/FX cars in 1965. We haven’t had many factory racing packages like that since then, and this should make for a very exciting Winternationals.”
Wolfe said, “There are a number of reasons why this is significant. Ford has not been involved in Sportsman racing for quite a few years, but now we’re going to be paying $1,000 in contingency earnings for anyone who wins an NHRA national event title in a Sportsman category, from Comp through Super Street. The new Cobra Jet is hopefully just the beginning of other similar projects to come in the future. We hope to offer a 2010 MY Cobra Jet, and details about that car should be available either late in the spring or the early summer.”