Revised NHRA schedule adds championship implications to Houston Raceway Park


September 2, 2020

BAYTOWN, Texas (Sept. 2) — The positioning of the 33rd annual Mopar Express Lane NHRA SpringNationals presented by Pennzoil as the second-to-last professional event of the revised 2020 season will likely turn Houston into drag racing’s title town for the first time in history.

Due to the fallout of COVID-19, the sanctioning body of drag racing released its final slate of six national events Wednesday with venerable Houston Raceway Park positioned to hold its traditional speed-fest on October 23-25. With the regular playoff system scraped for the year, it’s highly likely that one or more of the four professional championships up for grabs could be secured in Houston.

“Our family decided we really needed to be a part of this season,” said Seth Angel, vice president and general manager of the facility. “We feel strongly that our loyal fans and sponsors deserve this race and although it’ll be different than what we’re used to, we’ll all be able to get our nitro fix and enjoy the world’s fastest motorsport together.

“The timing of our race towards the end of the schedule gives us a very unique chance to crown NHRA champions right here at Houston Raceway Park powered by Pennzoil. We’ve traditionally been a springtime stop on the schedule so this will be a special treat for us all.”

Under current state guidelines, Houston Raceway Park may fill the grandstands to 50% capacity. Angel emphasized that health protocols will be in full effect, including social distancing, mandatory use of masks in all public areas, and several additional wash hand sanitizer stations positioned around the facility.

Apr 13, 2019; Baytown, TX, USA; NHRA top fuel driver Leah Pritchett (left) races alongside Doug Kalitta during qualifying for the Springnationals at Houston Raceway Park. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Because seating will be limited, race organizers suggest fans purchase their tickets as soon as possible to make sure they can attend. They also pointed out that groups from the same household may sit together in the grandstands, while others will be appropriately spaced. Fans who already purchased tickets but wish to skip this year’s race will receive full value for their tickets to the 2021 NHRA National event.

“I want to thank Governor Greg Abbott and all of the local officials from Chambers County for working with us through these unprecedented times,” Angel said. “At half-capacity, we have already sold-out the popular Top Eliminator Club and our inventory for the Nitro Club is very low. Please call us soon or visit our website to secure your seats. We can’t wait to see all of our friends.”

General admission seating starts at just $15 for Friday and $40 on Saturday and Sunday. Houston Raceway Park can be reached at 281-383-7223 or online at HoustonRaceway.com.