With huge championship implications on the line, the FuelTech NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by Type A Motorsports heads to World Wide Technology Raceway as part of this weekend’s NHRA Midwest Nationals, also marking the penultimate race in the Road to the Championship.
It is the third of four events in the first year of the NHRA Pro Mod’s playoffs, as well as the ninth of 10 overall races during the 2023 season. This weekend’s race is powered by Jerry Bickel Race Cars, continuing his legacy, as well as M&M Transmission, and all the thrilling action will be featured during Sunday’s broadcast on Fox Sports 1 (FS1).
The stakes are massive, too, as a number of contenders are still in championship contention, with everyone chasing defending world champion Kris Thorne. He won in Indy to take a 12-point lead over Justin Bond and both drivers have found success in cars built by Jerry Bickel Race Cars. JBRC has been a popular choice for doorslammer racers for nearly 40 years and this weekend’s race will serve as a huge platform for the class to honor Bickel, the innovative builder who tragically passed away in April.
World Wide Technology is close to the company’s Moscow Mills headquarters and Bickel was also a longtime supporter of the FuelTech NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by Type A Motorsports.
“Sadly, this NHRA Pro Mod event (in St. Louis) is the first without Jerry,” said Jennifer Bickel, owner of JBRC. “However, he built a skilled and dedicated team that he was very proud of, and they are fully able to continue Jerry’s reputation of building winning race cars. These men and women stand by Jerry’s vision and have made a commitment to carry on his legacy.”
Along with Thorne and Bond, other standouts in the class driving cars built by Bickel and his team include former world champions Jose Gonzalez and Khalid AlBalooshi, as well as top drivers like J.R. Gray, Mike Castellana, Stan Shelton, Kevin Rivenbark, Jason Lee, Manny Buginga, Ken Quartuccio and Mike Thielen.
Thorne took over the points lead in dramatic fashion in Indy, getting past Bond in the final round on a holeshot to win the world’s biggest drag race for the first time. It was the second win of the season for Thorne, who can put himself in a great position to get a second straight world title with a big weekend in St. Louis.
But along with Bond, there’s a host of title contenders looking to make a big move over the weekend. Lee, who picked up a win earlier this year, is 49 points back, while Castellana and Shelton are both less than 100 points behind Thorne. With an impressive 21-car field set to put on a thrilling show in St. Louis, it should make for a memorable weekend in the Road to the Championship.
Featuring the world’s fastest doorslammer race cars, the FuelTech NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by Type A Motorsports offers something unique and exciting for every drag racing fan. The class continues to grow in popularity and is highlighted by historic muscle cars and a variety of late-model American muscle cars, as well as a number of different power adders.
FuelTech NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by Type A Motorsports qualifying will feature one round at 5:00 p.m. CT on Friday, and the final two rounds on Saturday at 3:30 and 6:30 p.m. The first round of eliminations is scheduled for 12:40 p.m. CT on Sunday.
Tickets may be purchased at the WWTR ticket office, by phone at (618) 215-8888, or online at www.wwtraceway.com. All children 12 and under will be admitted free in the general admission area with a paid adult. For more information on NHRA, visit www.NHRA.com.