The racers interviewed made good points of why it's difficult to go back to 1320.
AB thinking out of the box with night races and 2 day races has been discussed for years with no interest or at least that's what it seems. Let's face it, NHRA and the track do not want to lose a day of making money.
I think they could play around with the schedule. Have open testing on Friday with Q1 at night. Then have Q2&3 and R1 on Saturday. Have RD1 promoted as happy hour. Run the remaining rounds on Sunday. This would mean you could move Sunday start time to 1pm and still be done by 4:30. There's other options too. Saturdays is your big attendance day and the nitro cars should be on the track 3 times.
Thinking out of the box, may be it's time to go to one nitro class. At this time, FC would make the most amount of sense. You can play around with the number of FCs that would qualify from 16, 24, to 32 depending on the number that are willing to race and how the schedule would work. If memory serves me right the national media told NHRA this years ago that they needed to crown one champ.
We'd all like to revert back to the time-honored traditional quarter mile but face it - nitro racing has painted itself into a 1000-foot corner as it's evolved over time and there's no turning back. A switch to 1320 even at select tracks would absolutely murder the classes; it's all the teams can handle financially to run 1000 feet and full fields haven't been a given for quite some time. Then there's the issue with tires; they aren't up to 350mph racing. At the power levels nitro engines are now capable of, a 1320 future will likely equate to lots of carnage. And for over a decade the issue of slowing the cars down has been met with widespread disagreement on how to proceed every time it's ever brought up.
The fans are fine with 1000 foot fuel racing; after 11 years they're used to it - many fans have never even seen a quarter mile fuel race - and they pay the bills. Leave it alone already.
All the good old traditions are almost all gone. Too many to list and 1320 was added to that list long ago and looks like the throttle whack or Pro Stock is next in line. We're in a new era. Replacing the old good stuff with new good stuff is not keeping up.
If I was in Vegas and had to place a bet on what track distance the NHRA would change to, I would put money down on the 1/8 over 1320. 1320 is not going to happen. The only way I could see it happening is if a company like Amazon bought the NHRA and paid the winners of each race 500K and year end championship prise of 5 million to race to the quarter.
Willy, I passed this info off to you almost exactly a year ago Hahaha!!
At this point my opinion is this: All ‘Pro’ classes move to 1000’. TF, FC, Pro Mod, Pro Stock, Pro Stock Bike. All sportsman and Nostalgia classes race to 1320.
Side notes: Also just my opinion, Factory Stock Showdown should be Pro Stock. Pro Street Bike should be Pro Stock Bike. NHRA’s season schedule should be shortened. 2 day National Events.
If they wanna kill attendance 1/8 mile will do it.
leave it 1000'. The low budget teams could never afford to switch back and forth.
Not sure if going to 1/8 will kill it. Only 1% of any given National event crowd are hardcore fans. Maybe a total of 20% are really into the NHRA. The rest are at the race for the entertainment value of it, Corp obligations, and being outside day drinking. If you cut out drinking you would lose more "fans" than going to the eighth.
Go to a points race and see how many fans show up.
1/8 mile wouldnt help thats for sure. Im only one person,if they went to 1/8 i find another motorsport to follow
Couple of things about 1/8 mile. 1. Speeds would be 300 MPH right off the bat. The 'record' right now is 299 by a T/F car. 2. Would not have to worry about short tracks. Even if speeds went to 320 they could still stop. 3. Not a bad seat in the house. Sit at the 330 and you can see the whole race. 4. The race would be over sooner. 5. 1/8 mile is gaining popularity with the No Prep racers & big $ ET racing, so that could spill over to pro classes. Just food for thought.
Cannot believe 1/8 is even a thought. Just shut it down. Drag racing more than ever needs an outside controller.
every video i see of 1/8 mile racing, the stands are empty. It seems to be the most popular form of drag racing as long as u dont care about paying spectators
The only one that has 1/8 racing figured out at this time is Duck X. I think Brian said they had 40K spectators for Lights out. What momentum ADRL had last decade has been pissed away by PDRA. PDRA still gets a decent size crowd for the GALOT races but that's about it.
Outside of Ducks races and a handful of others, the only racing that is putting people in the stands are big show nitro cars.
NHRA should follow golf's example and end its year before football starts. End the year at the biggest race of year, Indy.
… after watching some of the "smoky" FC burnouts during eliminations on tv yesterday, those may start to become extinct before you know it. I even heard one of the drivers finish line comment say they didn't need a burnout today.
If Nitro Ninja Dom can do 1/4 in 2017, it can be done in 2019. I would love to see them go back to 1/4 even if it means that they have to back them down or keep the current rack prep to slow them down. Some people say go 1/8 mile and keep the status quo on the current set up, why bother at that point of even having a nitro racing?
Didn't Beadle do smokeless burnouts in the Blue Max?. Not saying he did it all the time, but I think he did it at one time.
I remember Dom saying they did not have to change much to run to the 1/4. I think he said after a few runs they have it figured out and were soft.
Let's face it, the modern nitro racers are a little soft compared to the glory days. It's not their fault. Technology has made it easier to drive a modern FC. If you don't believe me, ask Whit. Also a TAFC is the hardest car to drive today.
Doubt it will ever go back to 1320 for nitro. The truth is it probably would've been shortened by now even without the accident in '08. I think Russell's death in '04 was a major precursor to the limits of a rubber tire. Not to mention the existing shutdowns on most tracks.
Just my two cents, but the thought of slowing the cars down to extend the distance to 1/4 seems counter to the history of the sport. Breaking records and continuing to improve design have always been the name of the game. Personally, neutered nitro cars would run me off faster than 660’. The only part that would be entertaining would be to see how long it took teams to regain their performance with new rules, but the sheer cost would likely run a lot of teams off. I guess my vote would be to stay 1000’, and let teams play around with 1320 on off weekends like Lagana’s. Someone mentioned Duck X’s events, maybe a big $$$$ 1320 Outlaw TF event would draw the crowds and satisfy the traditional 1320 fans.
I'd like to have 1320 back. At 1000' the thrill's are over to quickly. Having at only a few tracks would really mix it up for the teams. I think all they'd have to do is change the rear ratio. You've still got the rev. limiter so ? Even lower the RPM's if they go too fast.
Sort of on topic and not sure if there will ever be a correct time to ask, but his death affected the 1320’ to 1000’ debate.
Anyone remember the Brainerd Natl Dragster results issue the week before the Indy when Blaine Johnson died? It had a picture of Blaine’s chassis being tweaked by putting the front of the chassis under a dually pickup’s hitch and jacking it from underneath with a floor jack to straighten it. I always wondered if it cracked or weakened some welds that caused his wreck.
I questioned it in my mind when I saw the picture but assumed they knew what they were doing. It may have had nothing to do with it... or..
If this offends anyone I apologize and Willy please pull the posting if inappropriate.
That's an interesting observation. You never know. Even though the cause of accident wasn't related, the subsequent breaking apart of the car was.
Kind of like how they had to beat on the frame with a hammer to make something fit on Gwynn's dragster, and then shipping it across the ocean, likely not properly restrained.
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