The Big Go Is the Race Every Driver Wants to Win
When the NHRA rolls into Indianapolis prior to the Labor Day weekend, drag racing fans know that it is time for the National Hot Rod Associations' premier event, the Big Go. Not only does the historic weekend mark the end of the Mello Yello Countdown to the 2017 NHRA Championship, drag racing takes center stage in one of racing's most prestigious cities. Once again, race fans turned out in numbers for the Mello Yello Drag Racing Series "Fan Fest" on Wednesday Aug. 30 at the downtown Soldiers and Sailors Monument Circle. Top Fuel dragsters and Funny Cars lined the brick streets as fans mingled with some of NHRA's finest.
NHRA and sponsor Chevrolet took special efforts to celebrate the past, the present and future of drag racing with a multi-hour event featuring a press conference, autograph session, car displays, music and videos honoring the annual return to central Indiana for what is the world's biggest drag race. Hundreds of drivers and teams from all over the world head to Indy for Labor Day weekend to compete in over a dozen categories in hopes of earning an elusive Wally trophy. In addition to being the 18th of 24 events on the NHRA Mello Yello series, it is the "Countdown to the Chase" final event of the regular point's season.
The downtown area filled with excitement for a lottery-style drawing that selected the final Top Fuel and Funny Car drivers for the Traxxus Nitro Shootout. The top seven winning drivers in each division automatically transfer for the $100,000 purse races with Terry McMillen and Courtney Force getting the lucky draw this year. As an added fan attraction to the holiday-weekend at the drag strip, top sportsman drivers compete in Lucas Oil Sportsman classes like the Mopar Hemi Challenge. Even the governor of Indiana, Eric Holcomb and his wife Janet were on hand to mark the start of qualifying. To close out the evening show, jet engine powered dragsters blasted down the epic 1,000 feet of pavement.