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WATCH: NHRA Pro Drivers Take on Sportsman Racing’s Best ‘Joes’ in Virtual Practice Tree Challenge

The COVID-19 pandemic and its subsequent shutting down of the racing industry have sent racers across motorsports searching for virtual alternatives to on-track competition. While NASCAR, IndyCar and World of Outlaws drivers have iRacing to turn to, drag racers have had to get a little more creative.

One of the best outcomes of that search was the Pros vs. Joes Practice Tree Challenge, an online practice tree race pitting NHRA nitro and Pro Stock drivers against some of the best wheelmen in sportsman racing. Kyle Seipel, co-promoter of the Spring Fling big-money bracket races, came up with the idea and enlisted the help of some friends to put on the race and raise money for RFC and DRAW. It’s already raised over $5,000 before the event aired on YouTube on Wednesday, April 1.

Announced by touring NHRA announcer Nate Hirschi and bracket race announcer “Big Jed” Pennington, the Pros vs. Joes Practice Tree Challenge is a first-of-its-kind event. No where else would you see matchups like Antron Brown vs. Luke Bogacki, Erica Enders vs. Johnny Ezell, or Jeg Coughlin Jr. vs. Jeff Verdi. OK, you actually might see that last matchup at pretty much any big-money bracket race.

The full video is just over an hour long, and it’s well worth the time.

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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.