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Texas Motorplex revs up for AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals

by Mike Haag | Posted on Wednesday, October 14th, 2020

ENNIS – The Texas Motorplex will celebrate the 35th annual AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals this week with five days of action-packed racing at one of Texas’ premier drag racing facilities.

“We wanted to do something no other NHRA national event has done before,” said Andy Carter, General Manager Texas Motorplex. “This year has been a challenge for so many people and we wanted to celebrate the resiliency and high passion level of our fans. We will be hosting a two day National Open for sportsman racers on Wednesday and Thursday. Friday Night Live will be full sensory overload when it comes to speed and wild looking race cars.”

Carter added, “We’ll have everything from Top Fuel Harleys to Pro Mods to Factory Stock Showdown. Saturday and Sunday, we’ll have the best professional drag racers in the country racing all day. It will be a sight to see I promise you.”

This race weekend marks the first event of back-to-back races for the NHRA in Texas.  The Mopar Express Lane NHRA SpringNationals presented by Pennzoil will take place on October 23-25 at Houston Raceway Park.  The race was originally scheduled for earlier this year but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The action this week kicks off October 14-15 with the National Open which features hundreds of sportsman racers from across the country competing in a unique event.

On Friday, October 16, the Texas Motorplex will host Friday Night Live. The event will begin round of Grudge Match Racing followed by a qualifying session from the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series Top Alcohol Dragster division.  The race card will also feature the SAMTech.edu NHRA Factory Stock Showdown class, followed by the Mickey Thompson Tires Top Fuel Harley Series. The nightcap will showcase E3 Spark Plugs Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by J&A Service, along with Freestyle Motocross and Jet Dragsters.

The AAA Texas FallNationals, Saturday and Sunday, October 17-18.  All four of the NHRA’s four professional classes – the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series will compete in two rounds of qualifying on Saturday which will set the field of sixteen for Top Fuel dragsters, Nitro Funny Cars, Pro Stock and Pro Stock Motorcycle categories.  Elimination rounds are set for Sunday and the events from both days will be televised on FS1.

In addition, the Chris Kyle Frog Foundation Event will also be held on Sunday.  The event will offer military and first responders free tickets to the annual NHRA national event. During the July 4th weekend the “Buy a Ticket, Give a Ticket to a Military or First Responder” campaign provided complimentary tickets to hundreds of veterans and first responders for the race.

Despite the COVID-19 global pandemic, the Texas Motorplex is able to host this five-day event after meeting several criteria and health guidelines thanks to the support of Texas Governor Greg Abbott. 

The Texas Motorplex will welcome up to 50 percent capacity for fans throughout the race week.  The track will be instituting several safety measures to ensure that fans work together to slow the spread of COVID-19.

For ticket information call 800-668-6775.  Military and first responders can save 20% on adult reserved or general admission single day tickets at www.nhra.com/govx. Savings will also be available at the gate with the presentation of a professional or Military ID at the ticket window. Tickets also are available online at www.texasmotorplex.com.

Fans who are unable to attend the race can also follow the action on NHRA.TV and NHRA.com (live timing and scoring/results).

 AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals Facts

WHAT: 35th annual AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals, the ninth event of the 2020 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series season. Drivers in four categories – Top Fuel, Funny Car, Pro Stock and Pro Stock Motorcycle – earn points leading to 2020 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series world championships.

WHERE: Texas Motorplex, Ennis, Texas. The track is located at 7500 W. Highway 287.

COURSE: Championship drag strip; Track elevation is 500 feet above sea level; Track direction is southwest to northeast.

WHEN: Thursday through Sunday, Oct. 16-18

SCHEDULE: 
FRIDAY, Oct. 16:
LUCAS OIL SERIES qualifying / eliminations at 9:00 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. 
SAMTech.EDU FACTORY STOCK SHOWDOWN qualifying at 7:35 p.m.
MICKEY THOMPSON TIRES TOP FUEL HARLEY qualifying at 7:50 p.m.
E3 SPARK PLUGS PRO MOD DRAG RACING SERIES qualifying at 8:00 p.m.

SATURDAY, Oct. 17:
LUCAS OIL SERIES eliminations at 8:00 a.m.
SAMTech.EDU FACTORY STOCK SHOWDOWN qualifying at 3:30 p.m.
MICKEY THOMPSON TIRES TOP FUEL HARLEY qualifying at 3:45 p.m.
E3 SPARK PLUGS PRO MOD DRAG RACING SERIES qualifying at 4:00 p.m.
CAMPING WORLD SERIES qualifying at 12:30 p.m. and 4:45 p.m.

SUNDAY, Oct. 18:
CAMPING WORLD SERIES eliminations begin at 10:00 a.m.

TELEVISION
Saturday, Oct. 17, FS1 will televise one hour of qualifying coverage at 7:30 p.m. (ET).
Sunday, Oct. 18, FS2 will televise four hours of live finals coverage starting at 2:00 p.m. (ET).

2019 EVENT WINNERS:   
Billy Torrence, Top Fuel; Matt Hagan Funny Car; Greg Anderson, Pro Stock; Jerry Savoie, Pro Stock Motorcycle.

MOST VICTORIES:
John Force, FC, 7; Tony Schumacher, TF, 6; Greg Anderson, PS, 5, Warren Johnson, PS, 5; Cruz Pedregon, FC, 4; Robert Hight, FC 4, Eddie Krawiec, 3, PSM.

TRACK RECORDS: 
Top Fuel – 3.651 sec. by Brittany Force Oct. ‘19; 334.40 mph by Austin Prock, Oct. ’19
Funny Car – 3.828 sec. and 338.60 mph by Robert Hight, Oct. ’17;
Pro Stock – 6.457 sec. and 214.59 mph by Greg Anderson, Oct. ’15
Pro Stock Motorcycle – 6.744 sec. by Jerry Savoie, Oct. ’15; 200.26 mph by Matt Smith, Oct. ’19

NATIONAL RECORDS: 
Top Fuel – 3.623 sec. by Brittany Force, Sept. ’19, Reading, Pa.; 338.17 mph by B. Force, Nov. ‘19, Las Vegas
Funny Car – 3.793 sec. by Robert Hight, Aug. ’17, Brainerd; 339.87 mph by Robert Hight, July ’17, Sonoma, Calif.
Pro Stock – 6.455 sec. by Jason Line, March ’15, Charlotte, N.C.; 215.55 mph by Erica Enders, May ’14, Englishtown N.J.
Pro Stock Motorcycle – 6.720 sec. by Andrew Hines, March ‘19, Gainesville, Fla.; 201.76 mph by Matt Smith, March ‘19, Gainesville, Fla.
   
TICKETS: For tickets call (800) 668-6775. Tickets are also available at www.texasmotorplex.com.  

About the Author

Mike Haag has covered motorsports in San Antonio and South Texas for more than 33 years. In addition to covering motorsports for the San Antonio Express-News for nearly 28 years, Mike also has co-hosted TrackSmack with Dawn Murphy for 16 race seasons. In addition to being a writer, Mike taught high school English and Journalism for 30 years before retiring in May, 2020.