FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: NHRA Communications, (626) 914-4761
NHRA Media Center Online: http://media.nhra.com
NHRA ANNOUNCES RELATIONSHIP TO SANCTION
NOPI DRAG RACING EVENTS IN 2008
LAS VEGAS (Oct. 31, 2007) -- At the 2007 SEMA Show, NHRA announced that beginning in 2008, the world’s largest motorsports sanctioning body will combine forces with NOPI Motorsports to sanction sport compact drag racing events at NOPI events. The new sport compact race series will be called NOPI Drag Racing Series sanctioned by NHRA.
“This is a logical step for sport compact drag racing,” said Gary Darcy, senior vice president of sales and marketing, NHRA. “Bringing together NHRA and its 50-plus years of experience in conducting competitive drag racing events, and NOPI’s lifestyle activities and events, results in one series that can meet the needs of all the fans, sponsors and the entire racing community.”
As part of the sanctioning agreement, NOPI drag racing events held at NHRA member tracks will be conducted under NHRA rules. Competition and technical matters onsite at these events will be overseen by NHRA representatives. NHRA will declare a winner at those events and keep points towards NOPI championships in each category. At NOPI Drag Racing Series events held at non-NHRA member tracks, NHRA will not sanction nor will points be accumulated towards championships.
NOPI Motorsports and NHRA will develop classes to ensure that all cars that competed in the NHRA Xplod Drag Racing Series in 2007 will have a place to race in the NOPI Drag Racing Series sanctioned by NHRA in 2008.
“NHRA’s mission is to preserve and promote the sport of drag racing,” said Darcy. “Working with NOPI Motorsports on sports compact racing is intended to further that mission.”
“This is an exciting time for NOPI Motorsports and the whole NOPI family,” said Mike Meyers, president, NOPI Motorsports. “We have worked extremely hard over the years to develop a strong racing series for our racers, fans and sponsors. This partnership with NHRA is going to allow us to have the best racing series ever imagined. I’m personally excited to be part of racing history, which is exactly what’s happening with the NOPI Motorsports and NHRA partnership.”
The 2008 schedule for the NOPI Drag Racing Series sanctioned by NHRA will be announced at a later date.
About NOPI Drag Racing Association (NDRA)
Founded in 1966, NOPI (Number One Parts, Incorporated) is one of the country’s leading parts distributors in the $2.3 billion market for sport-compact automobile accessories. The NDRA is the hottest and most innovative sport-compact drag racing series in the U.S. today. The country’s top drag racers come together for 10 races each year and compete for more than $2.5 million and a $140,000 in yearend prize money. At each NDRA event, sport compact fans can spend the entire day and most of the evening at the track enjoying incredible drag racing action, car shows, swimsuit competitions, burnout contests and concerts with some of hottest names in entertainment.
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 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 and the NHRA Street Legal Drags presented by AAA. NHRA also offers the O’Reilly Auto Parts Jr. Drag Racing League for youth ages 8 to 17.
On May 30, 2007, the NHRA entered into an agreement with HD Partners Acquisition Corporation (AMEX: HDP) for the acquisition by HDP of the NHRA’s professional drag racing assets, including the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, together with a broad set of commercialization rights. The transaction is subject to HDP shareholder approval. Interested persons are advised to read HDP’s preliminary proxy statement on file at the SEC and the definitive proxy statement, when available. More information about HDP and the agreement with the NHRA is also available at www.hdpartnersacquisition.com.
NOPI / NHRA Questions.
Q. Why the merger between the two series?
A. NOPI MOTORSPORTS and NHRA felt that this partnership was needed for the continued growth of this industry as well as the growth of the new generation of drag racers.
Q. What other changes do you feel will come from this partnership?
A. With this partnership, we can expect larger events (competitor, spectators, sponsors, vendors) and see more quality side bye side racing.
Q. How many events will there be in 2008?
A. There will be 8-10 drag racing events in 2008.
Q. What will the series be called?
A. NOPI DRAG RACING Series sanctioned by the NHRA.
Q. Will the entire series be NHRA sanctioned events?
A. Yes, all of the series events will be sanctioned events, with the addition of a couple non-sanctioned sportsman events.
Q. Will the series be regional or national?
A. The series will be a national series.
Q. What will happen to the current NHRA events that were scheduled before the NOPI/ NHRA partnership?
A.NOPI Drag Racing Series will utilize as many of the current NHRA sanctioned tracks and previous dates as possible. This will help in building a stronger schedule of racing for 2008.
Q. Will the focus of the series be more towards the entertainment of the fans or focused on the motorsports?
A. By focusing on the motorsports portion of the events, we will in turn increase the entertainment level of the spectators.
Q. Will there continue to be as much emphasis on the girls of NOPI at the new events like in the past NDRA events?
A. No, there will not be as much emphasis on the girls of NOPI in the future.
Q. What is the event schedule for each event?
Q. Will race time management follow NHRA?
A. All NHRA timing systems will be in effect at all sanctioned events in 2008.
Q. Will there be NHRA techs at each event?
A. All NOPI DRAG Racing Series techs will be NHRA/SFI certified, as well as any track staff that is utilized having the same credentials.
Q. What will happen to the “Pro” classes for the new series?
A. The two previous series (NDRA, NHRASC) classes will be merged.
Q. What will happen to the “Sportsman” classes for the new series?
A. The two previous series (NDRA, NHRASC) classes will be merged.
Q. When will the rulebook for those classes be released?
A. The rulebook will be released once both parties have a chance to review and agree upon all of the rules, classes, standards and safety guidelines.
Q. Are there any NOPI Drift events that will be held at NHRA tracks?
A. There is a possibility that scheduling and track layout will allow this.
Q. Will the TV coverage be more focused on motorsports in 2008?
A. That is the intent of the NOPI DRAG RACING Series. We are currently in negotiations with television networks to insure that we get a television package that is beneficial for everyone involved.
Q. Will the TV coverage be provided by ESPN or Speed TV?
A. We are currently in negotiations with several television networks to insure that we get a television package that is beneficial for everyone involved.
Q. What will NDRA do to unify all the sponsors of both series?
A. The NOPI DRAG RACING Series will welcome all current NHRASC sponsors into the new series, as well as all previous sponsors of NDRA and NHRASC.
Q. Will NDRA be holding licensing events for NHRA licenses?
A. Drivers will be able to obtain their NHRA license at the events, as well as, their NHRA memberships as long as it is a sanctioned event.
Q. What will the qualifying fields be like for each category?
A. All NOPI DRAG Racing Series fields will be based upon an 8 or 16 car ladder for Eliminations on Sunday.
I hope this answers some of the questions for everyone out there.
If you have any questions please email me directly
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