Motor Sports Facilities

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NHRA Coming to Gateway Motorsports

13 Sep, 2013


St. Louis, MO, Facility to Host Part of ‘Countdown to the Championship’

The National Hot Rod Association (NHRA)’s AAA Insurance NHRA Midwest Nationals return to Gateway Motorsports Park in St. Louis, MO, on Sept. 27-29.  This will be the 21st of 24 events in the 2013 NHRA Mellow Yellow Drag Racing Series and is a key race in the “Countdown to the Championship.”

Unlike most professional sports, the NHRA provides total equality on the track. Courtney and Brittany Force, daughters of racing legend John Force, are drag racing history in the making.  This season’s lineup of drivers who are vying for a national championship, provide more interesting story lines, drama and competition than ever before.  Langdon and his 8,000-horsepower Al-Anabi Racing dragster have been dominant in 2013, winning five times and building serious championship aspirations.  2011 Funny Car Champ Matt Hagen is rebounding to have a great year after a tough 2012 season. Erica Enders, the first woman to win an NHRA Pro Stock national event in 2012, secured a sponsorship to return to the Countdown Chase after it appeared as though her 2013 season was nearly over. Combine all of this with cars that travel in excess of 300 mph and defy g-force, you have the making of a weekend more exciting than Christmas morning.  The momentum is building.  Come feel the earth move at the AAA NHRA Midwest Nationals.

The AAA Insurance NHRA Midwest Nationals will be celebrating all week, with family events for speed lovers of all ages.  Wednesday, September 25, meet Robert Hight, driver of the Auto Club of Southern California Ford Mustang Funny Car and President of John Force Racing, Inc.  He will be on hand at Paddy O’s from 10:30am – 12:30pm to sign autographs, take fan photos and show off his 320- MPH beast.  Also on hand will be Terminal Velocity Jet Cars, powered with jet engines that exceed the speed of sound.

Thursday brings the NHRA and Gateway Motorsports Park FanFest on Washington Avenue in downtown St. Louis.  This free, adrenaline-focused, fan-centered promotional event will opens at 11:00am for fans and will run until 7:00 pm to celebrate the AAA Midwest Nationals.  A 12:30pm press conference will be held for the media outside Lucas Park Grille, with lunch to follow.   During the course of the day fans can get up close and personal with NHRA racecars, interactive displays, and some of the baddest hot rods on the planet. Music, live radio broadcasts, ticket giveaways and games will fill the streets as NHRA fans from across the country pour into St. Louis for three days of racing action.  A tailgating party will entertain the after-work crowd from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 pm. The event will conclude with an exclusive opportunity to meet the stars of the NHRA with an autograph session taking place at 6:00 pm at 7:00 pm.

TELEVISION: Saturday, Sept. 28, ESPN2 and ESPN2HD TBD (ET).  Sunday, Sept. 29, ESPN2 and ESPN2HD will televise three hours of coverage starting at 8:30 p.m. (ET).

ON THE WEB: Get instant results, access to photos, video and audio clips and the latest news updates from every NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series event on the Internet at www.nhra.com.

SOCIAL MEDIA: Follow us on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/GatewayMSP and Twitter @GatewayMSP and at www.gatewaysmp.com 

BACKGROUND: This world-class facility has hosted NHRA events in the past starting in 1997 and featured tight racing with many surprise winners. Antron Brown, Ron Capps, Doug Kalitta, Jeg Coughlin and Andrew Hines have all won at the track during their stellar careers. Drivers in the Countdown to the Championship will be looking to gather all the points they can as including this event there will be only four races remaining before champions are crowned for the 2013 season.

The NHRA Full Throttle Countdown to the Championship will feature all four professional categories: Top Fuel, Funny Car, Pro Stock, and Pro Stock Motorcycle. 

Under new local ownership and with a new name, Gateway Motorsports Park is back and better than ever.  The 2013 season boasts the biggest event schedule in the track’s history, including the NHRA Midwest Nationals.  Located just five minutes from downtown St. Louis and covering 180 acres of prime real-estate, Gateways MSP is the largest outdoor entertainment facility in the region, encompassing a ¼ mile NHRA-sectioned drag strip, 1.2 mile NASCAR oval track, 1.6 mile road course, a new Gateway Karting facility and a new 14-acre off road course. Over the next five years, $20 million will be invested with the goal of attracting grass roots and major motorsports events, entertainment acts, and special public, corporate and private events.

The vision for the new Gateway Motorsports Park is to create a racing lifestyle that attracts enthusiasts, professionals, amateurs and street-car lovers of all kinds by harnessing the grassroots momentum, energy and passion of the thousands of racing enthusiasts and fans in the area. 

For more information about Gateway Motorsports Park visit www.gatewaymsp.com

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