After returning to the famed strip at SAR in 2011 following a two-year hiatus, the International Hot Rod Association’s Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series has enjoyed record growth with a newer, entertainment-based show. And in 2014 the IHRA will bring the best of both worlds to Texas with a perfect marriage of traditional championship drag racing and the newer, entertainment-first approach as the world’s best drivers compete in the second of 12 events on the 2014 Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series North American Tour during the San Antonio Nationals March 28-29 at San Antonio Raceway.
This year, every lap matters as the stars of Nitro Funny Car, Nitro Harley, Nitro Altered, Mountain Motor Pro Stock and Jet Dragster push their machines to the limit in their chase for the 2014 IHRA World Championships. Qualifying will take place Friday, March 28 followed by eliminations on Saturday, March 29, both under the lights and both with high stakes on the line.
“San Antonio has truly grown into one of the major high points of our season. The fan support there is unparalleled which is why we are so excited to bring the new look of the IHRA Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series to the fans,” said Scott Gardner, President of IHRA Motorsports. “The new Nitro Jam is a perfect blend of traditional drag racing and high speed, high horsepower entertainment and this year, we are bringing the best of the best in five amazing classes which should make this year’s event one of the biggest events yet.”
Highlighting the 2014 IHRA Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series is the Nitro Funny Car class, combining modern-world technology with classic body styles and old school, nostalgia drag racing. These machines regularly push 260 mph on the quarter-mile with fire bursting from the headers.
This season, the Nitro Funny Car class will revolve around a quartet of talented drivers that have dominated the class over the past few years. Multi-time class champions from the NHRA Heritage Series and DRO series Jason Rupert in the “Black Plague” Camaro and John Hale in the “Mike Burkhart” tribute Camaro will lead the class into the 2014 season, joining IHRA regular Tim Boychuk and the crowd-favorite “Mr. Explosive” Mark Sanders.
The legendary “Candies & Hughes” Barracuda will join the mix with veteran Mike Halstead behind the wheel, alongside IHRA veterans Mike McIntire in the bright orange “McAttack” Camaro and Greg Jacobsmeyer in the “All-Star Dodge,” the legendary “Jungle Jim” Funny Car and Bruce Litton, stepping over from more than a decade of Top Fuel racing to pilot the “U.S. Male” Vega.
In addition to Nitro Funny Car, perhaps the most anticipated competition this season is the return of IHRA’s original class, Mountain Motor Pro Stock. Featuring 800 cubic inch power plants powering these factory hot rods more than 220 mph down the track, this season will mark the return of these powerful beasts to the traditional drag racing distance of a quarter-mile.
Two-time IHRA champion Pete Berner will join the father and son duo of Dean and Cary Goforth, both regular winners on the eighth-mile circuit, along with John Deflorian, Kevin Bealko, John Konigshofer, Scott Hintz and more.
Also making history at Tucson will be the debut of the world’s only Jet Dragster championship program being contested by the four fastest women in drag racing – the Larsen Motorsports jet team. This four-car team is made up of four very talented female competitors with vastly different backgrounds. From a 19-year-old college student, to a female test pilot and an entrepreneur who holds the operation together, the team of Elaine Larsen, Marisha Falk, Dawn Perdue and Kat Moller will compete in 300 mph, side-by-side jet-powered drag racing action.
IHRA’s other nitro divisions will include Nitro Harley and Nitro Altered, two radical and extreme classes that are among the most popular in the world for their death-defying competition.
Iconic racer Jay Turner leads the 220 mph nitro-powered motorcycle class, joining Nitro Jam regulars Mike Scott, Randal Andras, Steve Dorn, Mike Pelrine, Jake Stordeur and more.
Nitro Altered, another extreme class once banned from organized competition due to the extreme danger behind the wheel, will include Arizona native Ron Maroney in “Blind Faith,” Las Vegas native and third generation racer Kyle Hough in “Nanook, the popular “Arizona Thunder” driven by Mike Hilsabeck, Randy Bradford’s “Bradford’s Fiat” and more.
In addition to all of the on-track action, the 2014 San Antonio Nationals will feature an all-new and fully interactive Fan Fest pit experience. Fans can tour the pits, meet the drivers and take part in a number of fun family activities including the Larsen Motorsports Jet Technology Center, a hands-on look at the design and technology behind a jet-powered racing team, and the Hollywood Cars of the Stars featuring real cars from famous movies and television shows.
Tickets to the 2014 San Antonio Nationals presented by Good Vibrations Motorsports are $20 on Friday and $30 on Saturday for adults and $10 for children. Adults can save $5 if they purchase their tickets in advance at www.nitrojam.com.
Showtime is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. on Friday for qualifying and 6 p.m. on Saturday for eliminations.
For more information on the 2014 IHRA San Antonio Nationals presented by Good Vibrations Motorsports, visit www.nitrojam.com.
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