Top Fuel Shootout in Vegas to have own TV show

BUDWEISER SHOOTOUT AT LAS VEGAS TO BE SHOWCASED ON ESPN2 Stand alone show to feature highlights from popular Budweiser Shootout Draw Party which finalizes the starting lineup for lucrative NHRA bonus event LAS VEGAS (May 6, 2006) -- NHRA and...

BUDWEISER SHOOTOUT AT LAS VEGAS TO BE SHOWCASED ON ESPN2

Stand alone show to feature highlights from popular Budweiser Shootout Draw Party which finalizes the starting lineup for lucrative NHRA bonus event

LAS VEGAS (May 6, 2006) -- NHRA and ESPN officials announced today that the Budweiser Shootout, a lucrative race-within-a-race bonus program for the season's best Top Fuel drivers in the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, will be showcased during a 30-minute television show on ESPN2 and ESPN2 HD on Saturday, Oct. 28 from The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

The Budweiser Shootout, which pays $100,000 to the winner, will air from 10-10:30 p.m. (ET) during ESPN2 and ESPN2 HD's expanded coverage of the sixth annual ACDelco Las Vegas NHRA Nationals.

The show will include highlights of the popular Budweiser Shootout Draw Party, held Thursday, Oct. 26 at The Joint, a multi-use entertainment facility inside the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. The field for the Budweiser Shootout is finalized during the Draw Party, through a series of special wild card drawings. The No. 8 starting position is selected from drivers 8-15 in the final Budweiser Shootout point standings in one drawing; and the final pairings for drivers who qualify in positions 2-7 also are set through a series of random drawings.

Budweiser, the Official Beer of the NHRA, provides a total purse of $239,000 during the Budweiser Shootout series in 2006. Budweiser will award $92,000 in bonuses to quick qualifiers throughout the 23-race Shootout series, with the No. 1 qualifier in Top Fuel earning $4,000 at each NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series event leading up to the Budweiser Shootout. Qualifying for the 2006 Budweiser Shootout started at the 2005 ACDelco Las Vegas NHRA Nationals in Las Vegas and will conclude at the 2006 NHRA Virginia Nationals in Dinwiddie, Va. Budweiser has sponsored the Budweiser Shootout since 1982.

Budweiser provides an overall purse of $147,000 for the eight drivers who earn a starting position in the Budweiser Shootout. In addition to the $100,000 winner's share, the Shootout runner-up will earn $15,000. The two semifinalists will earn $6,000 each and the four first-round finishers, $5,000 apiece.

Tony Schumacher is the defending Budweiser Shootout winner. He powered past Scott Kalitta for his first victory in the bonus program last year at The Strip at LVMS.

Past Budweiser Shootout winners include Joe Amato, Don Garlits, Kenny Bernstein, Shelly Anderson, Doug and Scott Kalitta, Gary Scelzi, Larry Dixon and Dave Grubnic.

Immediately following the 30-minute Budweiser Shootout telecast, at 10:30 p.m. (ET) on ESPN2 and ESPN2 HD, a 90-minute show will air with coverage of qualifying for the ACDelco Las Vegas NHRA Nationals. On Sunday, Oct. 29, ESPN2 and ESPN2 HD will air NHRA 2Day, a 30-minute news magazine show at 11:30 a.m. (ET) and a three hour eliminations show, starting at 8 p.m. (ET).

Headquartered in Glendora, Calif., 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. NHRA has 80,000 racers and members nationwide and 140 member tracks. NHRA-sanctioned sportsman and bracket racing series' provide competition opportunities for drivers of all levels. NHRA develops the stars of tomorrow by offering the Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series, Xplod Sport Compact Racing Series, NHRA Summit Racing Series and the Street Legal Program presented by AAA. NHRA also offers the O'Reilly Auto Parts Jr. Drag Racing League for youths ages 8 to 17.

-nhra-

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Series NHRA
Drivers Tony Schumacher , Joe Amato , Gary Scelzi , Don Garlits , Scott Kalitta , Shelly Anderson