Drag News Australia is proud to announce we will be bringing you updates from the biggest drag racing event in the world – the US Nationals.
While there was plenty happening out at the track as sportsman racing got started, Drag News editor Luke Nieuwhof headed to Monument Circle in downtown Indianapolis to check out the display of over a dozen nitro cars and the drawing of the Traxxas Shootout fan choice winner.
First we will take you back to Indianapolis Airport, where you start to get a feel for the event that is the US Nationals with the Funny Cars of Ron Capps and Tommy Johnson Jr greeting arrivals to the city.
Into Monument Circle and you can’t miss the colour and exaggerated lines that are modern day nitro dragsters. A steady stream of fans wandered by the cars getting an up close look.
Cruz Pedregon’s Snap On Funny Car strikes an imposing figure on the streets of Indianapolis. If only all Camrys looked this good.
The hottest name in Funny Car, John Force. Love him or hate him, the fan appeal of Force is unrivalled. His character remains the most vibrant in the NHRA. His comments at press conferences, including today’s, ensure ‘Brand Force’ continues to build. With the running of the Brainerd Funny Car final coming up this weekend as well, Force promised that if he lost he would kiss Ron Capps on the lips. Actually we’re not sure if that’s a promise or blackmail!
The eighth place in the Traxxas Shootout, a race within a race at the US Nationals, is decided by a fan vote and a lottery. The fan vote decides how many balls the driver gets in the lottery, which looks like your standard Tuesday night Oz Lotto draw. With this many blue balls in hand, Brittany Force was near impossible to beat and made it into the shootout.
There was a lot of infrastructure around this ‘Fan Fest’ including the big screen, the full driver introduction stage and a big autograph area. The streets around Monument Circle were closed off allowing fans to wander freely. It wasn’t exactly shoulder-to-shoulder in the midday heat but there were a bevy of TV cameras there though, hopefully giving valuable coverage for the 60th running of the US Nationals.
There will be more updates coming throughout the weekend. And if you’d like to get a sense of Indy outside of the drags, I’ll be updating my travel blog theninthwall.com shortly.