NHRA Street Legal Program To Be Primary Tenant FONTANA, Calif. (June 19, 2001) - In a joint announcement today by California Speedway and the National Hot Rod Association, plans for a new quarter-mile drag strip to host the NHRA's Street Legal...
NHRA Street Legal Program To Be Primary Tenant
FONTANA, Calif. (June 19, 2001) - In a joint announcement today by California Speedway and the National Hot Rod Association, plans for a new quarter-mile drag strip to host the NHRA's Street Legal program were unveiled by California Speedway President Bill Miller and NHRA President Tom Compton.
The new strip, which is designed for street cars to race in a controlled environment, will be located on the south side of the speedway in Parking Lot 1, behind the main grandstands. A concrete launch pad will be constructed in lot 1, along with a temporary starting stand and timing system. In addition, temporary concrete barriers will be brought in to line the course.
"With a small amount of reconstruction to the parking area, we are able to host this great program which has deep roots in our area," said Miller. "We look forward to working with the NHRA in developing this drag strip and giving people a quarter-mile strip to race their vehicles."
The first weekend of racing is currently scheduled for September 8th and 9th. The speedway plans to host two additional dates, September 22nd and 23rd and October 6th and 7th, to get the program underway. Following the November 4th CART FedEx Championship Series race, the speedway plans to conduct a winter racing schedule beginning in mid-January. The speedway will also host a summer racing schedule.
The area has been without a quarter-mile street legal drag strip since early 2000 when the Fairplex in Pomona had to scale back the number of race days at that facility.
"When Wally Parks founded the National Hot Rod Association 50 years ago, the goal was to get hot rodders off the streets and into a safe and controlled environment. As evidenced by this new partnership with California Speedway, our promise to our NHRA family and grassroots racing remains as strong as ever," said Compton. "We're confident that the commitment by California Speedway will ensure a great future for our street legal racing program in Southern California."
According to Miller, the speedway has received positive feedback from local law enforcement and San Bernardino County officials about the project.
"We have heard repeatedly about the increase in drag racing on our city streets and the dangers posed by this," said Miller. "A number of recent traffic fatalities have been linked to illegal drag racing on city streets. We hope by giving people a designated time and place, we can get them off the streets."
California Highway Patrol Inland Division Chief John Fogerty echoed Miller's comments.
"Throughout the area, CHP officers and other law enforcement agencies have been dealing with an increase in illegal street racing," said Fogerty. "Our Riverside office has conducted an extensive study, targeting two areas, Mission Boulevard in Mira Loma and Rubidoux Boulevard in Rubidoux. On Mission alone, our study shows as many as 400 people participating in illegal street racing during a one particular Saturday night in May.
"It is our finding that these illegal street racing enthusiasts are coming from as far away as Los Angeles, San Diego, Bakersfield and Las Vegas for these activities," Fogerty continued. "The result is an increase in property damage and traffic accidents. We support the efforts of California Speedway and the NHRA and look forward to working with them. People want to race, but it shouldn't be done on the streets. We will continue our crack down efforts on illegal street racing."
The street legal events at California Speedway will be open to spectators.
For potential racers, the speedway has set up a link on its website at www.californiaspeedway.com <http://www.californiaspeedway.com/> to sign up for additional information regarding programming dates and special announcements.
NOTE: The following definition of Street Legal racing was supplied by the NHRA: "At NHRA Street Legal events, only legitimate street legal machines are permitted to participate. Competition structures vary from track to track, but the emphasis is based on fun. Street Legal venues feature time trials and grudge racing only, which ensures each participant the opportunity for a maximum number of passes down the drag strip. Some Street Legal events may require mufflers and DOT-approved tires; others permit open exhaust and/or drag slicks."