GLENDORA, Calif. (Nov. 13, 2003) - NHRA officials announced today changes to the 2004 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series schedule that will better serve fans in the Dallas and Memphis marketplaces.
Next season, the O'Reilly NHRA Mid-South Nationals in Memphis will move to Aug. 20-22, 2004, one week after the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals in Brainerd, Minn. In addition, the O'Reilly NHRA Fall Nationals in Dallas will move to Sept. 23-26, 2004, one week following the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals in Reading, Pa.
"Given the amount of entertainment choices available for the general public in Dallas on our traditional weekend, and the unpredictable September weather we have had in Memphis the last few years, we wanted to make these changes to better serve our great and loyal NHRA POWERade Drag Racing fans," said Tom Compton, president, NHRA.
Officials from the two tracks, and the sponsor they share, are in full support of the changes.
"I am excited about the new dates and commend NHRA for having the foresight and leadership to make these changes for the fans," said Ron Byerly, vice president of advertising and marketing for O'Reilly Auto Parts. "I believe this is a proactive step to avoid the weather challenges we have faced in Memphis, while distancing ourselves from what is a very busy time for fans in the Dallas Metroplex."
The remainder of the 2004 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series schedule will remain the same as announced earlier this year, including the later date for the season-opening K&N Filters Winternationals, Feb. 19-22, at Pomona (Calif.) Raceway.
In 2005, NHRA will condense the schedule at the end of the season to increase continuity for the fans, sponsors and racers in the series.
ESPN and ESPN2 will again provide television coverage of the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series on a same-day tape or live basis.
Headquartered in Glendora, Calif., the NHRA is the primary sanctioning body for the sport of drag racing in the United States. It presents 23 national events through its NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series. The NHRA has 80,000 members nationwide and 140 member tracks. The NHRA-sanctioned sportsman and bracket racing series provide competition opportunities for drivers of all levels. The NHRA develops the stars of tomorrow by offering the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series, NHRA Summit Racing Series, NHRA Summit Sport Compact Drag Racing Series and the NHRA Street Legal Program. The NHRA also offers the NHRA O'Reilly Auto Parts Jr. Drag Racing League for youths ages 8 to 17.