The State of Louisiana is nicknamed “Sportsman’s Paradise” because of the abundance options for the many outdoor enthusiasts who enjoy fishing, hunting and boating there. One can also add drag racing to that list, and there is no better place for Sportsman racers than No Problem Raceway Park, the site of this weekend’s 10th annual JEGS NHRA Cajun SPORTSnationals.
The first of thee annual events designed specifically to showcase NHRA’s Lucas Oil Series Sportsman racers, the JEGS Cajun SPORTSnationals will host nearly 500 competitors at this weekend’s race and will crown champions in the following NHRA eliminators: Comp, Super Stock, Stock, Super Comp, Super Gas, Super Street, Top Dragster, Top Sportsman and Sportsman Motorcycle. There will also be numerous specialty races including the popular Hemi Shootout, the Moser Shootout, and the King of the Bayou for drivers in Super Comp, Super Gas and Super Street.
The SPORTSnationals series will feature the popular heads-up class racing in Stock and Super Stock, National event champion points, National event contingency payouts, $400,000 cash and contingency postings, and a host of special features, some of which will be unique to each of the events.
The list of drivers who claimed victories in last year’s Cajuns featured some of NHRA’s best Sportsman racers including former Super Stock champion Anthony Bertozzi, who won in the Top Dragster class, past Million Dollar Race winner T.J. Tracey, who won in Top Sportsman, and multi-time division champion Arnie Martel, who triumphed in Comp.
Those who are fortunate enough to win at the JEGS NHRA Cajun SPORTSnationals will be in the running for the JEGS Crown trophy. The coveted award, handcrafted by Dan Dreisbach of Naked Sculpture, is awarded to any driver who can win the same class in two of the three JEGS SPORTSnationals events in a given season.
Later this year, the winners of the Belle Rose event will also have the chance to travel to Columbus, Ohio, for the JEGS NHRA Northern SPORTSnationals, and/or Las Vegas for the JEGS Pacific SPORTSnationals, where they will also be eligible for the JEGS Crown. The JEGS Crown has been captured just once, by Pro Mod competitor Mike Ashley in 2005.
Since its inception in 2004, the Belle Rose event has become a favorite of racers across the country as it successfully strikes a balance between fierce on-track competition, and friendly off-track camaraderie. No Problem Raceway Park continues its tradition of producing first-rate events for NHRA Sportsman racing, while hosting a weekend-long party that includes plenty of Cajun food-fests and other Southern-style celebrations.