2 While I admit I never really followed Led Zeppelin with any intensity (I’m a product of the 80’s hair band scene), I think the title of their 1976 album resonates with me when I think about the last 15 years that I’ve been working with the IHRA team and all the changes we have been through together in that time. We have seen six ownership changes which brought four different Presidents and a host of individuals along the way who all worked on various components of the “pro show” to try and solidify the national event tour. The one thing that has never changed (aka: The Song Remains The Same) is the focus and commitment to the family of IHRA member tracks and our sportsman racing competitors and programs. For me personally, those two groups are where success is measured. Don’t get me wrong, the national events and the pro show was a huge part of the responsibility and certainly the biggest time consumer of almost everyone in the Racing Operations group. The national event tour received all the headlines (both good and bad) but for me personally, signing our 100th member track or hitting the 8,000 registered-competitor mark in the Summit SuperSeries program has always been more satisfying than resetting the Nostalgia Funny Car ET record, having 60 Pro Mods trying to qualify at Rockingham or having 1,002 competitors race at the World Nationals at Norwalk Raceway Park. It is comforting to know that our ownership group recently went on record to affirm their commitment to the member track and Sportsman racing component of IHRA even at the expense of not having a professional touring series. That speaks volumes if you are listening. The most important part of what IHRA does is to work at the track level and at the grassroots racing level to improve the sport. That work is the foundation of any true sanctioning body. It doesn’t get the headlines and is considered to most to be “working in the trenches”, but that is where IHRA has always been and will continue to be strong thanks to the small group of people that get up every day and make it happen. We know now that we can’t be everything to everyone. Believe me, we have tried. What we can be is true to the foundation of IHRA to make sure that The Song Remains The Same no matter what changes come our way. Publications Ignite2X Managing Editor Jeff Birchfield Photography BME Photography Advertising Sales Dana Landry Art/Creative Ignite2X, Ashley Partenza TM IRG President & CEO Lou Partenza Senior Consultant Michael Dunn Vice President Skooter Peaco Director of New Business & Industry Relations Dana Landry Director of Public Relations Jeff Birchfield Digital Marketing & Strategy Manager Ashley Partenza Director of Creative Marketing Manfred Eissner Membership Coordinator Bobby Carville Senior Director of Competition and Racing Operations Mike Baker Divisional Directors Josh Peake, Jon O’Neal & Frank Kohutek Special Advisor For Track Development Phil Gingerich The International Hot Rod Association (IHRA) is owned and operated by IRG Sports + Entertainment™, a TPG Specialty Lending company. The IHRA promotes professional and sportsman racing for drivers of all levels. The IHRA sanctions nearly 100 motorsport facilities in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Bahama’s and welcomes 80,000 racers annually to their IHRA- sanctioned facilities. The IHRA oversees multiple sportsman racing programs including the Summit Sportsman National Championship and the Summit Racing Equipment SuperSeries. AT THE STARTING LINE The Song Remains the Same Skooter Peaco Vice President