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NHRA Full Throttle Series and ESPN partner for ninth straight season; TSN, American Forces also renew for ’09
|OTHER NHRA TV NEWSNHRA Lucas Oil Series returns to ESPN2, ESPN2HDNHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series enters eighth year on TSNAmerican Forces Network schedules full slate of NHRA programming|
The worldwide leader in sports television will join forces with NHRA for a ninth consecutive season in 2009 as ESPN2 returns as the exclusive network of the 24-race NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series. ESPN2 is now available in more than 96 million households.
The partnership that began in 2001 has grown stronger with each year of the relationship. In 2008, the fast-growing NHRA Full Throttle Series delivered 9 percent ratings growth on its Sunday eliminations broadcast.
The 2009 season begins in Southern California with the 49th annual Kragen O’Reilly NHRA Winternationals at Auto Club Raceway at Pomona Feb. 5-8. It will conclude back in Pomona with the season-ending Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals Nov. 12-15, the sixth and final race in the NHRA Full Throttle Countdown to 1, and like each of the previous five races in the NHRA playoffs, it will be shown in prime time (7-10 p.m. ET).
In all, the network will dedicate more than 120 hours of original programming to the world’s quickest, fastest, and most intense motorsport with live or same-day coverage of qualifying and eliminations on Sundays.
Sixteen of the 24 races will begin or end in the 7-10 p.m. ET time slot, and all 24 of the races will be presented once again in high definition.
Additionally, the popular pre-race show that debuted in 2007, NHRA Race Day presented by Lucas Oil, will be back in 2009 and again will be produced on-site to allow fans attending the Sunday race a chance to watch – and participate in – the show. It will air Sundays from each of the 24 NHRA Full Throttle Series events.
Highlights of NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series coverage on ESPN2 and ESPN2HD include consistent time slots Sunday evening for the final eliminations rounds, with a majority in the coveted Sunday night prime-time slot. In addition, the network will dedicate 10 hours of coverage to the world’s most prestigious drag race, the 55th annual Mac Tools U.S. Nationals at historic O’Reilly Raceway Park at Indianapolis Labor Day weekend, Sept. 2-7.
Paul Page returns to the broadcast booth alongside former drag racer Mike Dunn, who will provide expert analysis and insight on the racing action. Dave Rieff and Gary Gerould will return as pit reporters. Joining them at select races throughout the year will be veteran announcer John Kernan, who joined the NHRA broadcast team in 2007.
NHRA Race Day presented by Lucas Oil will be hosted once again by Rieff and Dunn and originate from NHRA’s Nitro Alley. NHRA Race Day presented by Lucas Oil sets up the day for fans at home with must-see matchups, interviews with the stars of the sport, driver features, news and analysis, a review of qualifying, and what to watch for during the all-important Sunday eliminations action.
This year’s schedule includes four qualifying shows that will repeat on ESPN2 and ESPN2HD Sunday morning. Those shows are from the events in Phoenix, Gainesville, Reading, and Memphis, all of which have non-prime-time original airtime slots Saturday night.
In addition to coverage on ESPN2 and ESPN2HD, NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing will be aired and distributed internationally through ESPN International.
2009 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series television schedule
|Kragen O’Reilly NHRA Winternationals, Pomona||Qualifying, 10 p.m.-midnight, Feb. 7|
|Eliminations, 6:30-10 p.m., Feb. 8|
|NHRA Race Day, 11:30 a.m., Feb. 8|
|NHRA Arizona Nationals, Phoenix||Qualifying, 2-4 a.m., Feb. 22|
|Qualifying (re-air), 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Feb. 22|
|Eliminations, 7-10 p.m., Feb. 22|
|NHRA Race Day, 12:30 p.m., Feb. 22|
|ACDelco NHRA Gatornationals, Gainesville||Qualifying, 2-4 a.m., March 15|
|Qualifying (re-air), 10-11:30 a.m., March 15|
|Eliminations, (ESPN), 3-6 p.m., March 15|
|NHRA Race Day, 11:30 a.m., March 15|
|O’Reilly NHRA Spring Nationals, Houston||Qualifying, 8-10 p.m., March 28|
|Eliminations, 4:30-7:30 p.m., March 29|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., March 29|
|SummitRacing.com NHRA Nationals, Las Vegas||Qualifying, 8-10 p.m., April 4|
|Eliminations, 4-7 p.m., April 5|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., April 5|
|Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals, Atlanta||Qualifying, 6-8 p.m., April 18|
|Eliminations, 7-10 p.m., April 19|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., April 19|
|O’Reilly NHRA Midwest Nationals, Madison||Qualifying, 8-10 p.m., May 2|
|Eliminations, 7-10 p.m., May 3|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., May 3|
|NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals, Bristol||Qualifying, 8-10 p.m., May 16|
|.||Eliminations, 7-10:30 p.m., May 17|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., May 17|
|O’Reilly NHRA Summer Nationals, Topeka||Qualifying, 9:30-11:30 p.m., May 30|
|Eliminations, 4-7 p.m., May 31|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., May 31|
|NHRA Route 66 Nationals, Chicago||Qualifying, 10:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m., June 6|
|Eliminations, 4-7 p.m., June 7|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., June 7|
|NHRA SuperNationals, Englishtown||Qualifying, 7-8 p.m., 11:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m., June 13|
|Eliminations, 10 p.m.-1 a.m., June 14|
|NHRA Race Day, noon, June 14|
|Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals, Norwalk||Qualifying, 8-10 p.m., June 27|
|Eliminations, 8-11 p.m., June 28|
|NHRA Race Day, noon, June 28|
|Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals, Denver||Qualifying, 10 p.m.-midnight, July 11|
|Eliminations, 8-11 p.m., July 12|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., July 12|
|NHRA Northwest Nationals, Seattle||Qualifying, 7-9 p.m., July 18|
|Eliminations, 9 p.m.-midnight, July 19|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., July 19|
|Fram Autolite NHRA Nationals, Sonoma||Qualifying, 6-8 p.m, July 25|
|Eliminations, 9 p.m.-midnight, July 26|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., July 26|
|Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals, Brainerd||Qualifying, 6-7 p.m., Aug. 15|
|Eliminations, 10 p.m.-1 a.m., Aug. 16|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., Aug. 16|
|Toyo Tires NHRA Nationals, Reading||Qualifying, 1-3 a.m., Aug. 23|
|Qualifying (re-air), 10-11:30 a.m., Aug. 23|
|Eliminations, 10 p.m.-1 a.m., Aug. 23|
|NHRA Race Day, 11:30 a.m., Aug. 23|
|Mac Tools U.S. Nationals, Indianapolis||Qualifying, 11 p.m.-midnight, Sept. 5|
|Qualifying, 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m., Sept. 6|
|Qualifying, 5-7 p.m., Sept. 6|
|Eliminations, 1:30-6 p.m., Sept. 7|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., Sept. 6|
|NHRA Nationals, Charlotte||Qualifying, 11:30 p.m.-1:30 a.m., Sept.19|
|Eliminations, 7-10 p.m., Sept. 20|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., Sept. 20|
|O’Reilly Super Start Batteries NHRA Fall Nationals, Dallas||Qualifying, 10 p.m.-midnight, Sept. 26|
|Eliminations, 7-10 p.m., Sept. 27|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., Sept. 27|
|O’Reilly NHRA Mid-South Nationals, Memphis||Qualifying, 1-3 a.m., Oct. 4|
|Qualifying (re-air), 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Oct. 4|
|Eliminations, 7-10 p.m., Oct. 4|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., Oct. 4|
|NHRA Virginia Nationals, Richmond||Qualifying, 10:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m., Oct. 10|
|Eliminations, 7-10 p.m., Oct. 11|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., Oct. 11|
|NHRA Las Vegas Nationals, Las Vegas||Qualifying, 10 p.m.-midnight, Oct. 31|
|Eliminations, 7-10 p.m., Nov. 1|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., Nov. 1|
|Auto Club NHRA Finals, Pomona||Qualifying, 10:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m., Nov. 14|
|Eliminations, 7-10 p.m., Nov. 15|
|NHRA Race Day, 11 a.m., Nov. 15|
|* All times ET. Schedule subject to change. Please check local listings.|
Anyone interested in getting their chassis certified at the Test & Tune on Feb 21, space is limited, please call 972-878-2641 to sign up for a space.
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: