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Central Illinois Dragway Extends Partnership with IHRA

Monday, 04 December 2023

HAVANA, Ill. — Central Illinois Dragway and the International Hot Rod Association (IHRA) have agreed to extend their very successful partnership with a multi-year sanctioning renewal.

The Havana, Illinois track has continuously operated since 1969. It features some of the country’s most competitive bracket racing through the IHRA Summit SuperSeries, along with No Prep, street car racing and two huge weekends of Nostalgia racing.

Vashawn Young, the son of former Central Illinois racer Ed “Fast Eddie” Young purchased the facility in 2022. He brought in good friend Greg Gebhardt as general manager and they’ve continued to make Central Illinois Dragway a showcase for racers in the Midwest.

In 2023, upgrades included new LED lighting for the track and pit area, new LED scoreboards and a new PORTATREE timing system with a new Christmas tree and live timing. The track had undergone other improvements in recent years which included the track surface, work on the staging lanes and a safer shutdown area.

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More improvements are planned including more paving, camping areas with electric hookups, the concession area and additional bleachers.

All the hard work is appreciated by the talented racers at Central Illinois Dragway. The drag strip hosted the final IHRA Sportsman Spectacular presented by Moser Engineering and FuelTech of the season back in August.

Larry Bernshausen won the Top (Box) final and Rick Shofner was the Mod (No Box) winner with 2021 IHRA Summit World Finals runner-up Jimmy Barrett his final-round opponent. Avery Bolding, the winner of the Race of Champions at the 2022 IHRA Summit World Finals, won in Junior Dragster. Other winners included Jason Grafleman in Sportsman and Troy Fore in Motorcycle.

Barrett furthered his reputation as one of the best bracket racers in North America by representing the track at the IHRA Summit SuperSeries World Finals in both No Box and Sportsman. Jared Burdess (Box), Mark Abrams (Motorcycle) and Kylee Eads (Junior Dragster) were other track representatives.

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Central Illinois racers have performed well on the big stages. Shofner finished third on the IHRA Summit SuperSeries Mod National Top 10 list. Barrett and Adam Woodmancy both advanced to the championship round at the IHRA Division 5 (Thunder) Summit Team Finals.

There are so many great events through the year including the Spring Nostalgia Drags in early June and “Fast Eddie Memorial $10,000-to-win Midwest Lucky 7’s Bracket Race” in October.

Click here to check out the Facebook page for Central Illinois Dragway to keep up with the latest news and announcements concerning this fine facility.

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