Strong rivalries have already developed at Atlanta Motor Speedway's O'Reilly Auto Parts Friday Night Drags. Rekindled matchups from last year were extremely evident during last Friday's opening night of drag racing as new battle lines were drawn in numerous divisions.
Nearly 150 vehicles drag raced and more than 125 Show-N-Shine participants that took part in the first event of the season last Friday. Friday Night Drags is the nation's most popular street drag racing program offering competition and fun in a family friendly environment.
Intense opening night competition was highlighted last week in the Pro Division. David Craft of McDonough, last year's division champion, claimed the final-round win on opening night in a 1986 Chevrolet Corvette. Craft had to beat out the 1975 Chevrolet Vega driven by Hampton's David Clevenger. Last season, Clevenger was one a handful of drivers who Craft had to battle to win the championship. The opening-night race between the two appears to be the start of what will be a thrilling race among one of the fastest divisions at drags.
A new rivalry is developing in the Jailhouse Brewing Super Pro Division. Snellville's Jim Harris claimed a final-round win last week in a 1968 Chevrolet Camaro, but not before outracing John Fahmy to claim the first-place trophy custom-made by local artisans. Both race cars were built in 2014 to compete at O'Reilly Auto Parts Friday Night Drags.
Two drivers head into the second week of drags having built up momentum to open the season. In the Domestic Advanced Division, Atlanta's Eric Roycroft and his 1986 Ford Mustang were among the faster cars on the pit-lane drag strip last week. Raycroft topped Stockbridge's Wayne Breedlove in a 1973 Chevrolet Nova for the first-place hardware.
Another driver turning in an impressive opening-week was Griffin's Nicholas Feliciano. He won last Friday in a 1984 Mazda RX7 in the Street Outlaw Division, and his car was thought by many at drags to have been the fastest overall car competing on opening night.
Dust Off Your Show Car!
Local car enthusiasts have the chance to show off their vehicles and participate in parade laps around Atlanta Motor Speedway's racing surface during each week's Show-n-Shine competition at drags. Vehicles are placed in nine different classes at every drags event. Weekly awards are presented to the top three vehicles in each class. The Show-N-Shine competition takes place in the NASCAR Nationwide Series garage and entry is $20 per vehicle.
No Event May 23, Points Opener May 30
O'Reilly Auto Parts Friday Night Drags will not hold an event May 23 in honor of Memorial Day Weekend. The series will resume May 30 for the first points event of the summer. The final points event is August 15.
The 2014 Friday Night Drags season runs most Friday nights through August 15, with the Fall Stampede taking place September 12 and September 19. Practice runs begin at 6:15 p.m. and grandstand gates open at 6:30 p.m. Show-N-Shine car show judging begins at 6:15 p.m. with a Speedway Parade at 8:05 p.m. Drag racing eliminations begin after 9 p.m.
Drag Racing is open to any licensed driver. Competitors must wear a DOT-approved helmet and have operational seat belts in their vehicle. All racers ages 16 and 17 must have a fully-executed minor's release form on file at the speedway prior to competition. Forms are available at the Speedway or at www.atlantamotorspeedway.com.
Entry to drag race or for the Show-N-Shine is $20 or competitors can enter both for $30. Spectator admission is only $8 with children five and under free. Exterior parking is free while infield parking is $20.
Fans are reminded that Atlanta Motor Speedway offers a non-smoking grandstand. Smoking is allowed in designated areas behind the grandstands or the infield, but not in the grandstands, concourse or seating areas.
For more information on O'Reilly Auto Parts Friday Night Drags, contact the Atlanta Motor Speedway Ticket Office at (770) 946-4211, (877) 9-AMS-TIX or visit www.atlantamotorspeedway.com/drags.