TOPEKA, Kan. (Nov. 17, 2005) - As the calendar rolls from 2005 to 2006, Heartland Park Topeka is busy preparing for its busiest race season since the facility opened in 1989.

The '06 drag race schedule is highlighted by the 18th Annual O'Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Summer Nationals presented by Castrol GTX over Memorial Weekend, May 25-28. Heartland Park Topeka will also host two NHRA Lucas Oil West Central divisionals (May 5-7 and Aug. 25-26), and will be the host of the Summit Racing Series West Central Division E.T. Finals, Sept. 15-17.

Heartland Park will also conduct several E.T. Drag Race Series and Junior Drag Race Series events from April to August, and will once again allow racers to go from the street to the strip during Wednesday Street Showdowns, April to August.

Other drag racing scheduled for 2006 includes the return of the BTE/Citgo Bracket Racing Series (July 1-2) and the Second Annual Heartland Fun Ford Weekend (Sept. 8-10).

"Drag racing has been a big part of our history and heritage at Heartland Park Topeka," said Heartland Park Topeka owner Raymond Irwin.

"With the schedule for 2006, we will of course welcome back the NHRA POWERade Drag Race Series, but also welcome a second divisional event and host the E.T. Finals. Add to that our bracket and junior schedule, some specialty drag races, and it looks like a big year for drag racing at HPT."

A facility renovation is already underway that will prepare Heartland Park Topeka to host the "Super Bowl of Amateur Road Racing", the 2006 SCCA National Championship Runoffs® in 2006. Runoffs week begins Oct. 9 with practice sessions, continues with qualifying for all 25 National Championship classes Oct. 10-12, and will conclude with three days of racing to crown Runoffs winner's Oct. 13-15.

The month of September will be busy on the new autocross pad, with Heartland Park set to host the SCCA Pro Solo Finals (Sept. 22-24) and the Solo National Championships (Sept. 25-29).

Other road racing dates are highlighted by Kaw Valley Race Group SCCA regional and national weekends, the Kansas City Porsche Club, and the Kansas City BMW Club.

Mopar power will be featured in July with the 2006 SRT Nationals presented by Kicker Audio, and again in October with the Viper Racing League Viper Days Finals.

"With help from the City of Topeka, Shawnee County, and the State of Kansas, we were able to secure the funding necessary to bring our road course up to the level of other nationally-recognized facilities," said Irwin.

"Our schedule for next year is an indication of the reputation we are developing as a facility capable of hosting world-class road racing. With the Runoffs and Solo Nationals moving to Heartland Park next year, we are cementing a legacy for Topeka and Heartland Park as the grassroots motorsports capital of the world."

Heartland Park Topeka, a multi-purpose racing facility located in Topeka, Kan. annually hosts NHRA POWERade drag racing and the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA), in addition to many other events throughout the race season.