INDIANAPOLIS — The NHRA drag racing U.S. Nationals are coming to the Lucas Oil Raceway in Brownsburg this week, bringing speeds of over 330 mph again to the Indianapolis space.
The U.S. Nationals is the longest and last competitors on the NHRA regular-season schedule, spanning six days.
Right here’s what it’s essential know concerning the NHRA Nationals:
What are the NHRA divisions?
The NHRA has a number of drag racing divisions, however there are two premier lessons: High Gas and Humorous Automobile.
High Gas vehicles are the quickest accelerating vehicles on the planet, in accordance with the NHRA web site, and the 25-foot-long vehicles can rise up to speeds over 330 mph.
Humorous vehicles are much like High Gas vehicles, however they’ve a barely shorter physique made out of carbon-fiber. Humorous vehicles are barely slower than High Gas vehicles, however they will nonetheless obtain 330 mph. Humorous vehicles and High Gas vehicles don’t use a typical transmission — as a substitute, they’ve a clutch meeting to present energy to the Goodyear slicks on the vehicles.
There are a number of lessons within the NHRA U.S. Nationals, together with Professional Inventory, Inventory Bike, High Alcohol Dragster, and High Alcohol Humorous Automobile.
Why do these NHRA races matter?
All roads result in Indy on the subject of racing. NHRA racers take into account the U.S. Nationals the crown jewel occasion of their season — the one that everybody desires to win, possibly much more than a championship.
“Once you write down on the finish of your profession what your prime accolades are, if there’s not a world championship on there, it’s going to be a U.S. Nationals win,” Tony Stewart Racing driver Leah Pruett mentioned. “And it’s as a result of it’s the longest attrition race.”
The NHRA U.S. Nationals shouldn’t be solely the final regular-season occasion earlier than the playoffs, however drivers may also get points-and-a-half for profitable in Indianapolis.
Matt Hagan is at the moment second within the Humorous Automobile standings, 21 factors behind Ron Capps. The 1.5-point differential on the U.S. Nationals might enable Hagan to overhaul Capps going into the six playoff races.
“You get such a factors benefit going into these final six races, and you must win two or three out of these six,” Hagan mentioned. “And that’s asking quite a bit out of anybody.”
Legendary racer Tony Stewart, who retired from racing in 2016 and owns a automotive within the High Gas and Humorous Automobile lineups, returned to the motive force’s seat within the 2023 NHRA season. Stewart was a NASCAR driver from 1999-2016, racking up 43 wins within the Cup Collection. He’s additionally a Nationwide Midget Auto Racing and Nationwide Dash Automobile Corridor of Famer who additionally competed within the Indianapolis 500.
Stewart will probably be driving within the High Alcohol Dragster division, and he scored his first nationwide victory on the 4-Broad Nationals in Las Vegas earlier this yr. Going into the U.S. Nationals, he’s in second place within the High Alcohol Dragster standings.
Pruett, who’s married to Stewart, will probably be racing within the premier division. She is at the moment fifth within the High Gas standings, however she will be able to bounce to 3rd by the top of the weekend. Justin Ashley is at the moment main the High Gas division with a 101-point margin over Steve Torrence.
When are the NHRA U.S. Nationals?
The occasion runs from Aug. 30-Sept. 4, with the finals returning to Labor Day. Apply consumes the primary two days of nationals, whereas qualifying begins on Friday, Sept. 1.
The 5 nitro qualifying periods will begin at 8 p.m. Friday, adopted by the primary qualifying spherical at 4:30 and eight p.m. Saturday and the second spherical at 2:30 and 6 p.m. Sunday.
The U.S. Nationals is the one occasion the place drivers get 5 qualifying periods — one thing Pruett thinks ought to occur at each race.
“The extra time, alternatives you must run down the observe, the extra that you simply’re going to study,” Pruett mentioned. “And the extra you’ll be capable to apply it to your final setup for race day.”
Closing eliminations will begin on Labor Day, Sept. 4, at 11 a.m. and the ultimate races will observe. The All-Star Humorous Automobile Callout will race at 4 p.m. You will get tickets for the complete, six-day occasion or tickets by the day at https://www.nhra.com/nhra