The inaugural Stampede of Speed at the Texas Motorplex, home of the 36th annual Texas NHRA Fall Nationals, roared out of the gate with a Cattle Drive through downtown Waxahachie on Friday followed by a massive full day of festivals and music on Sunday highlighted by country superstar Dustin Lynch and Night Light lantern festival.
Crowds gathered around the historic Waxahachie Courthouse to see almost two dozen longhorns parade through the city. Working with the Waxahachie Convention and Visitors Bureau the Texas Motorplex staff led by General Manager Andy Carter organized the cattle drive to create excitement for the inaugural Stampede of Speed and give the inaugural event real Texas flair.
On Sunday Texas Motorplex began celebrating the start of the event on-site with a Beer Expo sponsored by Armadillo Brewing, BBQ contest, car show and Stampede of Speed welcome center. United Rodeo treated thousands of fans to two hours of bull riding excitement leading up to the country music festival. As the sun began to set, country music filled the air as Kyle Park, Wade Bowen, Flatland Calvary and ultimately Dustin Lynch thrilled tens of thousands of fans in attendance. In conjunction with the concert and additional activities, the Night Lights festival closed out the evening with a beautiful lantern release ceremony inspired by the traditional Thai lantern festivals celebrated around the world.
Beer Expo presented by Armadillo Brewing
“We had tens of thousands of people here on Sunday and everyone of them had an amazing time by all accounts,” said Christie Meyer Johnson, Texas Motorplex co-owner. “From the Beer Expo to the Bull Riding to the country concert it was an amazing day to celebrate the Stampede of Speed. This event will continue to grow and bring even more people to the Texas Motorplex from all over the country. We had fans here from Mississippi, Missouri, Arkansas, Kansas, and Illinois as well as from all over the state of Texas. This is going to be a historic week for the track and NHRA.”
Dustin Lynch concert
Night Lights lantern festival
The Stampede of Speed event calendar will feature ticketed and non-ticketed events leading up the NHRA Texas Fall Nationals. Fans can visit www.texasmotorplex.com or www.stampedeofspeed.com for more information. Highlights of the Stampede of Speed include:
Monday, October 4 – The Stampede of Speed Nitro Side Show
This ticketed event will feature some of the wildest race cars on the planet as they try and set speed records and breathe fire as they roar down the track. The pits will be open for fans to get up close and personal with some of the most exotic race cars on the planet. Following the racing action a massive fireworks display caps off an eye-opening, pulse pounding evening of racing and music.
Tuesday, October 5 – Inaugural NHRA Texas Stampede of Speed Shootout
Racing action will be the theme of the day as competitors from across the region race in the Stampede of Speed Shootout featuring Top Sportsman, Top Dragster and Pro Mods. The Top 16 sportsman and Top Dragsters will battle it out with a winner take all Shootout to end the day. Pro Mods from every association including NHRA will battle it out in a first-ever, no rules, anything goes battle to be the quickest at the Stampede.
Wednesday, October 6 – NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series Pro Invitational (9a – 6p)
Pub Crawl and Movie Night with The Snake (6p – 10p)
See the fastest, most powerful race cars on the planet make test laps in advance of the NHRA Texas Fall Nationals. The stars of the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series will be on-site preparing for the fourth race of the NHRA Countdown. This first ever for NHRA open schedule test session is a chance for curious motorsports fans to get a taste of the ground pounding excitement that will play out Friday-Sunday.
Join the stars of the NHRA as they sample local brews and eateries in Waxahachie on a walking Pub Crawl followed by an exclusive showing of the film Snake & Mongoose featuring drag racing legend Don “The Snake” Prudhomme hosting an in-person Q&A and autograph session.
Thursday, October 7 – Texas Fall Nationals sportsman qualifying (9a – 6p)
Fan Fest in downtown Waxahachie (6p – 9p)
Racing action continues at Texas Motorplex as the NHRA Texas Fall Nationals officially begins with sportsman qualifying action.
The wildly popular and free Fan Fest event will begin in downtown Waxahachie highlighting race cars interactive games, live music and family fun. A massive driver autograph session will be the highlight of the evening which will be capped off with a fireworks show.
Friday, October 8 – Friday Night Live at Texas Motorplex
For the second year in a row Friday Night Live will turn the traditional qualifying schedule on its head as music, exhibition runs and a special guest DJ will surround the Friday night NHRA pro qualifiers as they try and run to the top of their respective categories at speeds over 330 mph in under four seconds. The night will conclude with a free after-party on the starting line.
Saturday, October 9 – Final Qualifying for NHRA Texas Fall Nationals
The last day for teams and drivers from across the country to make the highly competitive sixteen car fields will conclude on Saturday. Teams will only have two chances to make the show or be relegated to spectator status so tension will be high and the competition jumps to a new level as teams vying to be one of the lucky 16. The annual DRAW auction accompanied by a concert will begin following racing action.
Sunday, October 10 – NHRA Texas Fall Nationals Race Day
Following a massive opening ceremony the top drag racers from around the country will be racing to get one step closer to a world championship at the only playoff race in the state of Texas. Hundreds of thousands of dollars will be on the line as well as the chance for racing immortality. The pits as always will be open for fans to mix and mingle with the racers throughout the day. At the conclusion of the event fans are welcome to join the winner’s circle celebration on the starting line where the Stampede of Speed will be closed with the largest fireworks display of the week.