Compiled by SEMA Editors
ADVANCE AUTO PARTS SIGNS MULTI-YEAR SPONSORSHIP TO BACK COURTNEY FORCE: Advance Auto Parts will be the major primary sponsor of Courtney Force’s Chevrolet Camaro SS Funny Car in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series. This multi-year sponsorship between Advance Auto Parts—a leading automotive aftermarket parts provider in North America—and John Force Racing will begin with the 2017 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season-opening Circle K NHRA Winternationals in Pomona, California, and cover the winningest female Funny Car driver in NHRA history throughout the season.
“I am thrilled to be driving the Advance Auto Parts Chevrolet Camaro SS Funny Car starting in 2017,” said Courtney Force. “Last season, we made some big strides toward our first championship, and I am very confident in my team led by my crew chiefs, Dan Hood and Ronnie Thompson, that next season can be even better. I love the look of this red, yellow and black Camaro, and I can’t wait to get it into the winner’s circle.”
CHANDLER TO CONTINUE TO FUND DON SCHUMACHER RACING MAKE-A-WISH AND INFINITE HERO FUNNY CARS IN 2017: New Mexico philanthropist and drag-racing enthusiast Terry Chandler will continue to fund the Make-A-Wish and Infinite Hero Funny Cars at Don Schumacher Racing in the 2017 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series. Chandler—the 2015 recipient of the NHRA Blaine Johnson Award for her dedication to helping others—has funded the Make-A-Wish and Infinite Hero Funny Cars at Don Schumacher Racing for the past three seasons. The two race programs are designed to raise awareness for foundations very dear to her heart.
TULSA, BRISTOL TO HOST 2017 JR. CONFERENCE FINALS EVENTS: The 2017 NHRA Jr. Drag Racing Western Conference Finals and Eastern Conference Finals will be held at Osage Tulsa Raceway Park in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and Bristol Dragway in Bristol, Tennessee, respectively. The NHRA Jr. Drag Racing Western Conference Finals will visit Oklahoma’s Osage Tulsa Raceway Park for the second time, June 15–16, and the NHRA Jr. Drag Racing Eastern Conference Finals will return to Eastern Tennessee’s famed Thunder Valley, July 20–22.
“The NHRA Jr. Drag Racing Conference Finals showcase the future stars of NHRA Drag Racing, and we couldn’t be happier to have two top-notch facilities host these events,” said Eric Lotz, director of field marketing, NHRA. “These racetracks are full of tradition and take a lot of pride in being a part of the NHRA Summit Racing Jr. Drag Racing League. We cannot wait to return to Osage Tulsa Raceway Park and Bristol Dragway next year to again crown young champions.”
He Said, She Said
“The dream scenario is one of us is in the winner’s circle at every race. The KB Racing team dominated the field with their three cars this last season, and we did a pretty good job ourselves in ’14 and ’15, so we know it can be done. Our guys are really hungry to win again. I believe the move back to Chevrolet is by far the best one we could have made, and we plan to show everyone that beginning in February in Pomona.”
—Two-time Pro Stock world champion Erica Enders on her and teammate Jeg Coughlin Jr.’s—a five time Pro Stock champ—move to Chevrolet Camaro's for the 2017 season.
Inside the Numbers
Gen 6: Name of the new Chevrolet Pro Stock Camaro SS that will race in the 2017 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season. The car debuted at the PRI Trade Show in Indianapolis, and testing will begin later this month.
“Our goal was to minimize aerodynamic drag within the NHRA guidelines and incorporate as many design cues from the production car,” said John Mack, Chevrolet Camaro exterior design manager. “The result is a sleeker and more aerodynamic Camaro SS.”
Did You Know
PHOENIX, EPPING TICKETS ON SALE NOW: Tickets are now on sale for the 2017 NHRA Arizona Nationals, February 24–27, in Phoenix, and the NHRA New England Nationals, June 2–4, in Epping, New Hampshire. The NHRA Arizona Nationals—race two of the 2017 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series—is held annually at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park in Chandler, Arizona, just outside of Phoenix. The NHRA New England Nationals, held at historic New England Dragway, kicks off the important month-long East Coast swing in early June.