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  #21  
Old 11-26-2015
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twomotor twomotor is offline
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Well - as someone who went to his first drag race in 1959 - I don't much care for the hesitation games in Super Gas and Super Comp either. Totally can see where it wouldn't make sense to a new fan.
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  #22  
Old 11-26-2015
GolfRacer GolfRacer is offline
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Originally Posted by twomotor View Post
Well - as someone who went to his first drag race in 1959 - I don't much care for the hesitation games in Super Gas and Super Comp either. Totally can see where it wouldn't make sense to a new fan.
This subject is dear to my heart as I see the future of the sport in the balance of what happens over the next 2-3 years. Either the NHRA gets its act together or this boutique sport will further diminish as us rabid fans die off.

If we're all honest with one another then we'll admit that new fans are the key to the growth of the sport and that means more money for track operators, NHRA and racers. I have dear friends who race sportsman and I watch because I care what happens to them. But my casual friends see it as boring and as Twomotor says it doesn't make sense to them. So I'd state fact ONE is: Heads up whatever the class.

Next - maybe - maybe a "pro stock" type class will be adopted by new fans if the right formula is adopted. That formula must mimic what attracts the new type of fan today. What makes the major sports popular?.....most of us have thrown a baseball, football or played basketball / golf / hockey at some point so you can identify somewhat with pro athletes. Of course there are hometown loyalties and the sheer spectacle of the presentation. Well...drag racing is identifiable by anyone who has really driven a car.

When "we"...us rabid fans...say they want to see the sportsman classes on Fox....that is about the opposite of what needs to be done to attract mass audiences. The nitro cars are the big draw, the equivalent of the best team or best golfer, etc. Pro stock can, I believe, succeed if the factories get involved and pump their advertising dollars into it. If it's 8 second cars in exciting races - the fans won't care (I know we will) as it's the drama, driver favorites and all that goes with proper marketing. As in the major sports. My other posts about introducing new fans to the sport isn't an exaggeration. I'm probably over 50 who had never been or at least not in the past 25 years - and they were astounded by the spectacle. Now they watch the races on TV and we discuss at a regular basis. My home is near Sonoma but they've gone to Pomona, Vegas and Dallas with me. I consider that somewhat a model for what can happen.

So separate "the show" from sportsman racing and make it a big production. ESPN gave it a minimal effort to do that - relying on the same camera shots, interview questions and tech shorts. New fans want the equivalent of a reality show wrapped in new excitement. This isn't the 60's and 70's when almost everybody wanted a GTO, Hemi or 427....those days are over. BUT...look at the dollars Chrysler has spent hyping the Hellcat...every social media I visit! And similarly the new Vette, Camaro and Mustang. The manufacturers are making a fortune on these cars yet they aren't featured in any mainstream racing.

One last point on demographics. Golfers are generally considered to be more wealthy as a group. For sure we spend more money on equipment than soccer, tennis softball players, etc! So that drives the advertising bucks and therefore the sponsorship bucks paid to the players. People who buy the performance cars are also more wealthy (or at least they spend what they have!) so that trickle down economic model will work for NHRA / racers. it will take time - might take 10 years to get professional drag racing back on a healthy track, but I believe it can be done.
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  #23  
Old 11-26-2015
GolfRacer GolfRacer is offline
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Originally Posted by StrokerMotor View Post
The future of drag racing is out of NHRA's hands. It's held now by a multitude of independent organizations that promote big power small tire doorslammer racing.
How is that so? How do the small tire "doorslammer" crowd get their purses up? If they want to go further in the sport where do they go then?

Maybe you're right that the professional drag racing model is dying...or at least in a permanent stagnant state. But there are a LOT of racers who are outside of the model you point out.

I will agree that at the grassroots level the community you state is very popular and is growing. But I believe our discussion is more towards the professional classes - at least that's my intent.
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  #24  
Old 11-26-2015
a21stud a21stud is offline
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The under 40 new car guy crowds on the eastern half of the country are showing major interest in small tire, big power adder racing. IF either IHRA or NHRA go after it with contingency money and serious promotion of the small tire cars and stars, sanctioned drag racing will grow a new product line to protect their older and maybe dying one. If they do it right, the manufacturers will be interested in backing it.

Look no further than the heads-up, NMRA thatís backed by Ford. Itís s separate sanctioning group with very little power or pull. They only put on 8 races per year and get their stars to tow all over the eastern half of the country plus Texas for little money and prestige. If NHRA bought or backed them as a separate NHRA national event type and maybe moved Pro Mod over to it as their high speed draw, they would have another money making series.

I Like the golf vs. drag racing analogy. Golf has the PGA and the LPGA and whatever they call what used to be their Nationwide Tour for young guys plus the Serior PGA for the dinosaurs. In drag racing NHRA could have the Mellow Yellow Series, the ďXYZĒ Sponsored Small Tire-High Horsepower Series, plus their Divisional Races and the Hot Rod Heritage Series.

Donald ďThe DuckĒ Long wouldnít be happy as heís making a killing with just two small tire races at the same track every year and NHRA or IHRA either one could put a hurt on his program if they decided to. The Yellow Bullet Nationals, Huntsville, Bradenton and others also put on some decent crowd pulling small tire events without any serious publicity or marketing.

The Duck and the others canít get Ford, GM, Fiat or Toyota to jump on board but NHRA or even IHRA might very well get it done. However, that would just pull more folks away from NHRA Pro Stock. Small tire racing already has done that for me.

Jonh Mihovitzís 2500 pound Mustang with a Ford 4.6 (281 cubic inch for us old guys) motor set the world record for a modular motored car a 5.88 and 250 mph. All the car guys with new Mustangs, Camaros and Challenger/Chargers ears perk up hearing that. Tell the same guys that Erica Enderís won the Pro Stock World Championship and they canít relate that to that.
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  #25  
Old 11-26-2015
AtcoDave AtcoDave is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by a21stud View Post
The under 40 new car guy crowds on the eastern half of the country are showing major interest in small tire, big power adder racing. IF either IHRA or NHRA go after it with contingency money and serious promotion of the small tire cars and stars, sanctioned drag racing will grow a new product line to protect their older and maybe dying one. If they do it right, the manufacturers will be interested in backing it.

Look no further than the heads-up, NMRA thatís backed by Ford. Itís s separate sanctioning group with very little power or pull. They only put on 8 races per year and get their stars to tow all over the eastern half of the country plus Texas for little money and prestige. If NHRA bought or backed them as a separate NHRA national event type and maybe moved Pro Mod over to it as their high speed draw, they would have another money making series.

I Like the golf vs. drag racing analogy. Golf has the PGA and the LPGA and whatever they call what used to be their Nationwide Tour for young guys plus the Serior PGA for the dinosaurs. In drag racing NHRA could have the Mellow Yellow Series, the ďXYZĒ Sponsored Small Tire-High Horsepower Series, plus their Divisional Races and the Hot Rod Heritage Series.

Donald ďThe DuckĒ Long wouldnít be happy as heís making a killing with just two small tire races at the same track every year and NHRA or IHRA either one could put a hurt on his program if they decided to. The Yellow Bullet Nationals, Huntsville, Bradenton and others also put on some decent crowd pulling small tire events without any serious publicity or marketing.

The Duck and the others canít get Ford, GM, Fiat or Toyota to jump on board but NHRA or even IHRA might very well get it done. However, that would just pull more folks away from NHRA Pro Stock. Small tire racing already has done that for me.

Jonh Mihovitzís 2500 pound Mustang with a Ford 4.6 (281 cubic inch for us old guys) motor set the world record for a modular motored car a 5.88 and 250 mph. All the car guys with new Mustangs, Camaros and Challenger/Chargers ears perk up hearing that. Tell the same guys that Erica Enderís won the Pro Stock World Championship and they canít relate that to that.
Great post.

John's Mustang is unbelievable.

If the NHRA ever got involved in small tire racing, NMRA etc they would just screw the entire thing up. People that race those series and races want nothing to do with the NHRA. NHRA is a bad four letter word in those parts and for good reason.
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  #26  
Old 11-26-2015
HEMI_guy HEMI_guy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twomotor View Post
Well - as someone who went to his first drag race in 1959 - I don't much care for the hesitation games in Super Gas and Super Comp either. Totally can see where it wouldn't make sense to a new fan.
This was the very first thing my friend's wife brought up about the one and only national event they ever attended. I assumed they had never been to one before and was abruptly corrected when she said... "oh you mean those races where some of the car jump off the line then stall then run real fast again... yeah we won tickets to one of those... we'll never go back".

No disrepect to the Super clases, they just don't belong at national events that are meant to entertain everyone that attends.
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  #27  
Old 11-26-2015
HEMI_guy HEMI_guy is offline
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Originally Posted by GolfRacer View Post
This subject is dear to my heart as I see the future of the sport in the balance of what happens over the next 2-3 years. Either the NHRA gets its act together or this boutique sport will further diminish as us rabid fans die off.
I'd rather it die than it be ruined for all those who have supported it for all these years. I also don't buy into all the Henny Penny the sky is falling crap either.

And be carefull what you wish for. Everyone wanting to compare NHRA to NASCAR... jeep a few things in mind.... what sort of pit access to NASCAR fans have and just how close do spectators get to the racers at their races? have they ever almost been run over by Jeff Gordon of a scooter?
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  #28  
Old 11-26-2015
AtcoDave AtcoDave is offline
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Here is an example of what a modern day Pro Stock car should or could be IMHO.



http://www.dragzine.com/news/john-mi...istering-5-88/

STOCK block, STOCK crank and STOCK heads!!!

4.6 liter DOHC V8 with about 60 lbs of boost.

5.88 250 @2500 lbs!

You could have a Ford with a real Ford engine in it, Chevy could use a modern day LS and Mopar could use an actual Hemi engine.

Maybe the manufacturers would jump on board???

What the NHRA has done now is far too little far too late.

I want to see real manufacturers going after each other and that doesn't happen in today's Pro Stock. Erica Enders is not driving a Chevy, that engine has nothing to do with anything Chevy has produced in the past 20 years and the car looks nothing like an actual Camaro. So when a "Camaro" wins a race, I don't really care, it's not like Chevy or GM is winning anything.

Plus utilizing production based engines is far more important in drag racing than to almost any other motorsport because that's what hot rodding is all about.
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  #29  
Old 11-26-2015
a21stud a21stud is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AtcoDave View Post
Great post.

John's Mustang is unbelievable.

If the NHRA ever got involved in small tire racing, NMRA etc they would just screw the entire thing up. People that race those series and races want nothing to do with the NHRA. NHRA is a bad four letter word in those parts and for good reason.
AtcoDave, you are right. I forgot that so many are sooo over anything to do with NHRA. These are real heads up racers, their crews and fans too. Iím on the back side of 60 and my hardcore drag racing son and his friends could care less about NHRAís Mello Yellow Series. If I just mention a nitro guy winning a race, he will change the subject when heís being polite. He would rapidly agree that NHRA trying to get into small tire racing would just screw it up.

Hemi, you probably will get your wish of NHRA not growing by leaps and bounds. Yeah, it wonít die until the last sponsor dollar disappears. The Comp racing that spectators dislike wonít go away as it is an income stream for NHRA and they do like income. Especially income that comes attached to people buying products marketed by NHRA.

We realized a couple weeks ago that with Orlando Speedworld going to IHRA, NHRA wonít be getting our money anymore as all the tracks in Florida are now IHRA other than Gainesville. The only thing Gainesville promotes is a few bracket races, their national event and divisional event. No heads up stuff so we wonít need their license or insurance anymore. We discussed it and believe we wonít miss National Dragster that much either. Itís really too bad as Wally Parks did fantastic things for drag racing type gear heads.
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  #30  
Old 11-26-2015
Mac4264 Mac4264 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AtcoDave View Post
Here is an example of what a modern day Pro Stock car should or could be IMHO.



http://www.dragzine.com/news/john-mi...istering-5-88/

STOCK block, STOCK crank and STOCK heads!!!

4.6 liter DOHC V8 with about 60 lbs of boost.

5.88 250 @2500 lbs!

You could have a Ford with a real Ford engine in it, Chevy could use a modern day LS and Mopar could use an actual Hemi engine.

Maybe the manufacturers would jump on board???

What the NHRA has done now is far too little far too late.

I want to see real manufacturers going after each other and that doesn't happen in today's Pro Stock. Erica Enders is not driving a Chevy, that engine has nothing to do with anything Chevy has produced in the past 20 years and the car looks nothing like an actual Camaro. So when a "Camaro" wins a race, I don't really care, it's not like Chevy or GM is winning anything.

Plus utilizing production based engines is far more important in drag racing than to almost any other motorsport because that's what hot rodding is all about.
I missing this cause that car less the engine is pro stock or very close to being legal. But then that is people's bitch is how they don't look stock and that mustang looks about as mustang as a pro stock camaro. And ok he used stock engine components with turbos. What's factory about the turbos which is making it run. Never the less it is impressive as I know this car and it's setups history.
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