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Lonnie Grim & Team Return To Oversee CTech World Doorslammer Nationals presented by JEGS Technical Operations

As the race competition and tech director, Lonnie Grim looked at things differently when judging how the CTech World Doorslammer Nationals presented by JEGS went last year.

But even from his perspective, the inaugural race couldn’t have gone better, which leaves Grim excited for the 2021 event, which takes place March 5-7 at Orlando Speed World Dragway.

“It felt like everything went seamless and there were very few bumps. We’re bringing back the same team and we’re all excited,” Grim said. “It’s great to have all the sportsman classes there this year, so they can have the time of their life at this race as well. 

“This event, to say the least, is on a different level. It’s like a big-time prize fight, but also gives you memories of days gone by with the camaraderie involved.”

Grim, who is also the competition and tech director for the PDRA, returns in the same role for the second annual race, eager to offer the same level of success when it came to running a smooth, efficient, racer-friendly and thrilling show.

It is a lot of hats to juggle, but Grim and his standout team did it marvelously a year ago, treating the teams in Pro Stock and Pro Mod like stars, and putting a premium on a well-run, highly entertaining race.

A year ago, the event had the drag racing world buzzing, thanks to massive purses and putting Pro Stock and Pro Mod in the spotlight. The high praise continued well after the race, as everyone from the racers to teams to fans to sponsors noted the continuous action, efficient schedule and a memorable atmosphere.

That credit goes to Grim and his crew, and he noted he was excited as any of the teams competing last year in Orlando.

“One thing that worked very well is our whole team is on the grounds, so if there is any type of question, we can all come together and make a decision,” Grim said. “This ‘A-team’ is amazing and it’s a great group where everyone is on the same page. I’m very blessed and humbled to be part of this event, and I’m really looking forward to it this year.”

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There will be more responsibility for 2021’s CTech World Doorslammer Nationals presented by JEGS with the addition of sportsman classes Factory Stock Showdown, Top Sportsman, Stock, Super Stock and Competition Eliminator, but Grim welcomes it with open arms.

In just one year, the race has become the ultimate doorslammer event, with Grim helping provide the chance for everyone to put on a spectacular show in Orlando.

“What this race does is bring the racing community together,” Grim said. “Once the helmets go on, it’s time to get serious, but when they’re off it’s a good time had by all. It was important for us to present a very welcoming experience, and we worked with everyone to ensure that.”

With a wealth of experience and expertise in the sport, Grim is well-liked and respected throughout the industry, making him the ideal choice for the competition and tech director at the Ctech World Doorslammer Nationals presented by JEGS.

He loved the different nuances of the inaugural race, from the chip draw for Pro Stock eliminations to the overall feel of the race. With the COVID-19 pandemic still present in 2021, Grim and his team promise to be ready for any changes that come with that as well.

He joked there may be more “air fist bumps” this year, but assured everyone it won’t take away from what will be another special weekend in Orlando.

“As long as there is good communication, everything goes well,” Grim said. “We pulled that off last year and we’re all ready to do that again. We’re double-checking everything and following whatever guidelines and protocols that are in place. We want everybody to feel safe and secure, and we know we’ll be able to do that.”

Qualifying for the CTech World Doorslammer Nationals presented by JEGS starts on Friday, continues Saturday before final eliminations on Sunday.

This story was originally published on January 25, 2021. Drag Illustrated

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Since 2005, DI has informed, inspired and educated drag racers from every walk of the racing life - weekend warrior and street/strip enthusiasts to pro-level doorslammer and Top Fuel racers. From award-winning writing and photography to binge-worthy videos to electric live events, DI meets hundreds of thousands of racers where they live, creating the moments that create conversations.