Richie Smith Claims His Second E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Win

It isn't a surprise to fans of the E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Series that Rickie Smith is on track for another successful season. No one works harder or has more fun racing Pro Mod. However, the long weekend at Heartland Motorsports Park saw relative newcomer Chad Green waiting out the rain showers while holding on to the Number One qualifying position. In his second qualifying run on Friday, Green ran a 5.762 pass at 250.13 mph in the Bond-Coat 2017 Corvette. Steven Whiteley was seeded second with a faster speed of 252.28 mph but a slower ET of 5.782. Eventual winner Rickie Smith held the third place qualifying position with a 5.800 at 248.43 mph. With racing postponed Sunday due to intermittent rain, Pro Mod teams had an extra day on the road before capping off the Heartland...

May 22, 2018
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Average Miles Per Hour: 230.088 mph

No, it is not one of the speeds clocked for Pro Stock at the NHRA Heartland Nationals. That's the average-speed (230.088 mph) for the first lap of qualifying on "Pole Day" for the 102nd running of the Indianapolis 500. The front straight grandstands erupted in an uproar of cheering fans when Indianapolis's hometown boy, Ed Carpenter, posted the only 230 mph-plus lap time for the Month of May. Carpenter, who grew up at the Brickyard, was on his way to a four-lap average of 229.618 mph, which was good enough to claim pole position for next Sunday's historic event. Equally as impressive, was the fact that Ed Carpenter Racing, which is housed at the 2.5-mile facility, placed all three cars in the Top 7 starting positions for the race. Danica Patrick, who has already announced her...

May 21, 2018
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The Historic Role of Women in Auto Racing

It is never a surprise for NHRA race fans to see a woman driver standing on top of the podium when the smoke clears at the end of Sunday's finals. After all Leah Pritchett and Brittany Force are among the favorites at any Top Fuel dragster event; and Brittany's younger sister Courtney followed in their older sister Ashley's shoes as a consistent winner in Funny Car. You can add Angelle Sampey's 3 championships (43 overall wins) in Pro Stock Motorcycle and Erica Enders 2 championships (23 overall wins) in Pro Stock, and the minority contingent are always among the drivers to beat on any given Sunday. But, who were the female drivers responsible for crawling behind the wheel to get ball rolling? The famous Grand Prix racing driver of the 1920s was known by her stage name, Hellé...

May 18, 2018
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Gonzalez Earns First E3 Spark Plugs Pro Mod Victory in Charlotte

Dominican born Jose Gonzalez earned his first career victory in the E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by J&A Service at Charlotte's zMAX Dragway. Just one week after capturing the Number One qualifying position at Baytown, Gonzalez posted a 5.743 ET at 254.09 mph in his Q80 Chevrolet Camaro to take the win. The weekend's Pro Mod racing, sponsored by Al-Anabi Performance, which was the third of 12 events scheduled for the 2018 season, was a four-wide thriller. Gonzalez barely edged Brandon Snider off the tree with a .021 reaction time to Snider's .022 RT. But, a puff of smoke from Snider's car just past half track took him out of the hunt. Gatornationals Pro Mod winner Richie Smith had his hands full as his Bahrain 1 Racing Chevrolet Camaro lost traction...

May 1, 2018
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Four Wide Racing at zMAX Dragway with Milestones on the Line

Drivers and crew chiefs spent most of the weekend talking about finding the right recipe for racing four wide at NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMAX Dragway in Concord NC. But, is it really that different to make a winning run when you line up against three other competitors instead of just one? Well, according to some teams, those few precious seconds that it takes to stage four entries can play havoc with an engineer's calculations for something as simple as the amount of fuel onboard. As any diehard race fan can confirm, running out of fuel at the 980-foot mark can result in a spectacular supercharger explosion. For the drivers, it is just different. There are two Christmas trees, so the drivers in the two inside lanes have to pay special attention. Moreover, there are four lanes of...

May 1, 2018
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Whiteley Captures E3 Spark Plugs Pro Mod Win at Baytown

Jim Whiteley captured round two of the E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing series at Royal Purple Raceway outside Houston TX. The strength of the Pro Mod class for 2018 was witnessed by the 29 class entries at Baytown for the SpringNationals. As always, thousands of racing fans took advantage of the opportunity to interact with their favorite drivers and garnered a firsthand look as the Pro Mod teams tweaked the last ounce of speed out the 3,000 horsepower engines. Whiteley's first Pro Mod victory came two years ago at the track when he defeated this year's Gatornationals winner Rickie Smith in the final round. As a three-time national champion in NHRA Top Alcohol Dragster, it was Whiteley's 25th Wally and second victory in the E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Series presented by...

April 23, 2018
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Wins and Woes Continue at Baytown for Force Racing at NHRA Springnationals

For the Godfather of Funny Car, engine woes continued for the Peak Coolant and Motor Oil Chevy Camaro SS. John Force failed to make a fast enough run in all four of his qualifying attempts at Royal Purple Raceway. Having qualified for the show at the previous 33 SpringNationals, it had been 221 races since Force had failed to make the field for Sunday's eliminations. Force set the record for drag racing earlier in his career by qualifying for 395 consecutive events. However, don't think that missing the show is a day off for the patriarch of John Force Racing. He was upset about not being behind the wheel at Baytown but spent the day signing autographs for fans and supporting teammates Robert Hight, Courtney Force and Brittany Force. In Top Fuel, Brittany rebounded from her...

April 22, 2018
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Is Horn Honking Really Necessary to Lock Your Car?

A good friend from the west coast recently posted an interesting blog on his facebook page. It seems the homeowners in his neighborhood have become upset with the unnecessary noise produced by horn honking. No, not the honking at someone's untethered pet in the street, but the annoying blast created by drivers who have to double-click their vehicle's remote fob every time they lock the doors. Why Should You Care About Noise Pollution? Most vehicle owners never think about the noise pollution that is created when they are simply too lazy to have pressed the door lock upon exiting their vehicle. However, the collective effect of a neighborhood, a community, a township, a city, a state, a region, a country, a continent -- you get the point -- produces an overwhelming amount of noise...

April 18, 2018
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Buy the Right Replacement Tire for Your Vehicle

Once you've put a certain number of miles on your vehicle, it's going to be time to buy new tires. Just like changing your vehicle's plugs and wires, tire industry nomenclature needs to be de-coded, so you select the best rubber for the road. As you will discover below, driving variables, such as road surface, weather conditions, speed limits and even your driving behaviors, will be accounted for as you decipher the hieroglyphics. Unless you're racing at the local drag strip or turning laps on an oval track, it is best to install the same brand, size, tread pattern and rubber compound on all four wheels of your vehicle. With that in mind, let's get started. What does P215/60R16 mean? Tire sizes most often begin with a letter. "P" indicates a passenger car tire. "LT" at the beginning...

April 17, 2018
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E3 Spark Plugs Highlights the Players in Pro Mod: Shane Molinari

Nashville, TN, (April 12, 2018) One of today’s most exciting classes in NHRA drag racing has become the Pro Mod series, now in its first season sponsored by E3 Spark Plugs. The 2018 E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by J&A Service is a show like no other in the NHRA series, allowing multiple makes of cars, builders and engines to compete on a level playing field, now drawing ever increasing throngs of fans to each city that Pro Mod races at NHRA. The 2018 season is shaping up yet again, as a special one with barely thousands-of-a-second continually dividing winners and runners up, from a Pro Modified entry field of over 30 cars per market.   One of those competing racers is Shane Molinari, from Battleground, WA. Shane started when a couple ...

April 12, 2018
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