BAYTOWN, TX – July 14, 2021 – (Motor Sports NewsWire) – NHRA and Houston Raceway Park have teamed up to announce the final NHRA SpringNationals as the historic track will close following the 2022 event.
As NHRA looks to the future, the leadership team continues its conversations with Tulsa Raceway Park, and other venues not currently on the circuit, to fill the spot of the Houston event in future NHRA seasons.
“Our family is extremely proud to have showcased the top level of professional drag racing for 35 wonderful years,” said Seth Angel, Houston Raceway Park Track Operator. “It’s been a dream come true to meet and work with all the incredible drivers, team owners and NHRA executives who come together each year to entertain the millions of racing fans in our area.”
“We at the NHRA want to thank Houston Raceway Park and the Angel family for their commitment to the sport of drag racing,” said Glen Cromwell, NHRA President. “Our race teams, partners and NHRA officials look forward to celebrating the track as we close out this chapter of NHRA history.”
Renowned for its sea-level location at the top of Trinity Bay, which creates a race-perfect, oxygen-rich environment, Houston Raceway Park hosted its first national event in 1988. At the time, the 500-acre facility was co-owned by the Gay family of Dickenson, Texas, longtime friends of brothers Greg, Gary and Glen Angel (deceased). The Angel brothers then bought out the Gay family’s interest in 2004.
Houston Raceway Park has been the site of many special moments, none more so than the NHRA’s first four-second run, set at the 1988 race. Texan Eddie Hill quickly topped that record by running a 4.93 in the final round of Top Fuel to win the race, sending off a worldwide frenzy of interest in the sport.
Other memorable moments at HRP include “The Burndown,” when bitter rivals Warren Johnson and Scott Geoffrion sat in the pre-stage beams for more than a minute trying to unnerve one another; first-time victories for a pair of future multi-time world champions, Scott Kalitta and Jeg Coughlin Jr.; Michael Phillips becoming the first African-American to win in a pro category in 1997; and three inclusions into both the Pro Stock 200 mph Club and the Top Fuel 300 mph Club.
The final running of 35th annual Mopar Express Lane NHRA SpringNationals presented by Pennzoil will be held April 22-24 at Houston Raceway Park.
Headquartered in Glendora, Calif., NHRA is the primary sanctioning body for the sport of drag racing in the United States. NHRA presents 22 national events featuring the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series, NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series, E3 Spark Plugs Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by J&A Service, Factory Stock Showdown and Top Fuel Harley Series. NHRA provides competition opportunities for drivers of all levels in the NHRA Summit Racing Series and the NHRA Drags: Street Legal Style. NHRA also offers the NHRA Jr. Street program for teens and the Summit Racing Jr. Drag Racing League for youth ages 5 to 17. With over 120 Member Tracks, NHRA allows racers to compete at a variety of locations nationally and internationally. NHRA’s Youth and Education Services (YES) Program reaches over 30,000 students annually to ignite their interest in automotive and racing related careers. NHRA’s streaming service, NHRA.tv, allows fans to view all NHRA national events as well as exclusive features of the sport. In addition, NHRA owns and operates four racing facilities: Atlanta Dragway in Georgia; Gainesville Raceway in Florida; Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis; and Auto Club Raceway at Pomona in Southern California. For more information, log on to www.NHRA.com, or visit the official NHRA pages on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. and YouTube.
Source: National Hot Rod Association