NHRA Driver Receives Award from NASA

NHRA Driver Receives Award from NASA Image

On April 20th, while on tour of NASA's facilities in Houston, Mac Tools Toyota Top Fuel dragster Doug Kalitta was awarded a special honor. Kalitta Charters, Doug's company, has a longstanding history of working with NASA. The company ensures safe transportation of hardware, experiments, and team members after landing from trips to the International Space Station. “It is an honor to receive such an award from NASA due to my work with them in space station experiment deliveries,” said Kalitta. “NASA does very interesting experiments in space, and it is an honor to be a small part in making that successful.” The award itself is very unique in that it includes an ISS mission patch which was flown on the final Space Shuttle flight, STS-135, in 2011. “One of...

April 24, 2017
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Butner Gets First Pro Stock Win at Baytown

Butner Gets First Pro Stock Win at Baytown Image

In his seventh final-round appearance, and first since Seattle 2015, NHRA driver Bo Butner earned the first Pro Stock win of his career at Royal Purple Raceway in the NHRA SpringNationals at Baytown, TX. Veteran driver Jeg Coughlin Jr. laid down a 6.557 pass at 210.70 mph on Friday as fast qualifier in his JEGS.com/Elite Performance Camaro. Before taking down Coughlin Jr. in the final round, Butner had eliminated Allen Johnson and Greg Anderson. On Sunday, Butner put up a 6.550 second run at 212.26 mph in his Jim Butner's Auto Chevrolet Camaro to claim the victory. Funny Car Finals to Capps Courtney Force looked to turn her season around at Baytown as the number one qualifier Saturday at 30th annual NHRA SpringNationals. But, fellow John Force Racing teammate Robert Hight eliminated...

April 24, 2017
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Funny Car Champ Matt Hagan's New Lease on Life

Funny Car Champ Matt Hagan's New Lease on Life Image

Two time NHRA Funny Car champion Matt Hagan has had a lot to deal with this year. In early January of this year Matt's younger brother Kyle died unexpectedly in his sleep. In an interview with Auto Week Matt opened up about the loss of his brother and continuing with his career afterward. “It’s very unfortunate, very tragic, very sad. He was 32 years old, and you ask yourself why. There’s no real reason. Stuff just happens. You have to deal with it, whether you’re angry or you’re hurt. That’s the hand you’re dealt,” Hagan said. “Now I look at things a little different. Make every day count because you don’t know when it is your last. You just got to look forward and make sure every day has a purpose,” he said. Ryan was...

April 23, 2017
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Racers in Rain Delay for Bristol NASCAR

Racers in Rain Delay for Bristol NASCAR Image

With Sunday's planned short track race in Bristol postponed until Monday, many of NASCAR's top drivers were interviewed about the upcoming event. The 0.53-mile oval Bristol track is known for wild races. Now, weather is playing a factor in event timing as the rain has fallen several times leading up to Monday's race, which will make for a green race track. Danica Patrick spoke to Fox Sports to weigh in on how her race would be managed. “It’s a little bit exhausting, because you always feel like you have to be somewhat ready – and NASCAR doesn’t always do the best job of giving us a lot of notice,” Patrick said. “Like there have been many times when I’ve been on the bus in my pajamas and they’re like, ‘Green flag in 15...

April 23, 2017
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Drag Racing Legend Dies at 74

Drag Racing Legend Dies at 74 Image

Hank Johnson, known as "Gentleman Hank" in drag-racing circles, passed away 2 weeks ago after a four-year battle with cancer. An amazing driver, Hank won the Top Fuel division at the National Hot Rod Association Super Nationals in 1971 and was a legend in the racing community. He spent 15 years racing in the NHRA national circuit and dedicated most of his life to racing. “I would say it was his passion,” Johnson’s longtime friend and racing associate Bucky Austin said. “Everyone has a passion or a drug of choice, and racing was his drug of choice. He loved it, he absolutely loved it.” Johnson's career began in the early 1950s. Fans followed him as he progressed through Slingshot and Willys dragsters in the 1960s and began competing in NHRA in 1971. Having...

April 20, 2017
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Tundra Dominates for 9th Season

Tundra Dominates for 9th Season Image

The 2017 season of the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series is off to a tremendous start with the announcement that the Toyota Tundra will be returning as the official truck of the races. As part of this iconic partnership Toyota is providing a fleet of Tundra trucks for the racing series to use as support and safety vehicles as well as being the primary sponsor for veteran racer Eric Barron. "We are continuing our very strong relationship with Team Lucas and the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series again this year because our multi-level campaign reaches such a diverse and enthusiastic marketplace," said Toyota Motorsports North America Marketing Planner Andre Jackson. "The Lucas Oil Off Road Series gets us exposed to a lot of fans who love the outdoor life and the spectacularly exciting...

April 14, 2017
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Dale Jr. Reflects on Concussion Recovery

Dale Jr. Reflects on Concussion Recovery Image

On April 2nd one of NASCAR's most celebrated drivers, Dale Earnhardt Jr. spoke to fans about returning to the NASCAR Cup Series following yet another concussion. When asked about the return Earnhardt said, "I certainly am more aware, whether I want to be or not, of how dangerous it is. But going through the injury yourself really puts it into perspective what's important." The 42-year-old driver lost his father to racing in 2001. Over the years NASCAR has begun taking concussions more seriously. In the past doctors were only brought to the infield if the driver couldn't drive the car back to the garage themselves. Today the infield care center gives every driver a SCAT test administered by a neurosurgeon after an accident. The new rules state that anyone involved in an accident, no...

April 11, 2017
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Millennials Shift Strongly Toward Ride Sharing

Millennials Shift Strongly Toward Ride Sharing Image

Recent reports are showing a strong shift in the up-and-coming generation, away from car ownership and toward ride sharing. A striking 70% of millenials surveyed said they regularly use ride sharing services when going out with friends. Compared to the past generation which had 91% auto ownership, of today's younger drivers only 78% own or lease a vehicle. On the surface it may just look like a savings plan, however this reason was only listed at #3 after short waiting times and overall efficiency of the experience. What services are most used by millenials? Unsurprisingly Uber came in at #1 with 97% brand recognition followed by Lyft at 75% and ZipCar at 42%. At first the ride sharing trend was disrupting the taxi industry yet now it is effecting automotive and transportation as...

April 7, 2017
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Juan Pablo Montoya Considers Sports Car Racing

Juan Pablo Montoya Considers Sports Car Racing Image

Long celebrated open-wheel racing superstar Juan Pablo Montoya teased fans recently after taking his first laps behind the wheel of a Ferrari 488 GTE car. At an IMSA-sanctioned test at Sebring, Montoya completed 10 test laps in Ferrari's GT Le Mans contender. The two-time Indianapolis 500 winner turned a best lap of 2:01.414, just 3 seconds slower than Sebastien Bourdais who set the pace in a Ford GT at the Rolex 24. The event is making the news because it was Montoya's first experience in a GT car. "It’s fun," Montoya said after the run. "It’s different. I ran like 4-8 laps just to get the hang of it. I’m probably going to get back in a little bit later.” “A prototype drives more like an open-wheel car, "he went on to say. "This is very different....

April 4, 2017
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The Fast-Paced World of Sprint Car Racing

The Fast-Paced World of Sprint Car Racing Image

After mixed fan reactions from NASCAR's race changes many are turning to the Sprint car series to get their thrills. This year's Daytona 500 was the first race showcasing the new 3-part style of racing NASCAR is releasing in an effort to attract more fans. While new fans may come to the sport, some of the long-time ones may be leaving, opting instead for the more dangerous Sprint car racing. Sprint car tracks are shorter, feature fewer regulations, and the cars are simply insane-looking. These lightweight and powerful winged monsters tear around tiny dirt tracks at over 100mph. With an output of over 900 horsepower, top speed over 160mph and a body style which is unlike anything else out there, it is easy to see the appeal. Each Sprint car weighs less than half of a NASCAR and...

April 3, 2017
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