One of the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series’ most accomplished racers traces his origins to Ontario…..

Within the wild and wacky world of NHRA Competition eliminator class racing — participating racers there really do march to a very different drum beat.  And one of the single longest running drivers within that category is a transplanted Canadian – Brian Browell. 

Browell, is originally from London Ontario but now resides in Lafayette Indiana., is recognized as not only one of the most consistently competitive racers in NHRA Sportsman racing, he is also regarded as one of the most creative.   

Within the sport of drag racing, “Comp” might be one of the misunderstood eliminators overall.  It features a very wide variety and mixture of cars (75 individual classes) — encompassing  dragsters, altereds, door slammers, and even trucks!  It is also a given that there is a very meandering rule book, with considerably more measurement and performance index adjustments compared to other eliminators.  While that fact has proven to be problematic and challenging for some drivers and team owners – it can also be an attraction according to Brian.

Transplanted Canadian native Brian Browell (far lane) focuses his motorsports ventures within one of drag racing’s most finicky eliminators: “Comp”.

“I’ve been racing in Competition eliminator from day one and I believe it to be the only Sportsman eliminator out there that is not cookie cutter,” Brian stated.  “I love Comp because it’s where I can innovate my ideas and then all of your hard work can show results by going faster against the index.”

Brian’s passion and speciality in drag racing has notably been running a series of 6-cylinder cars over a very long period.

“In my very earlier days I was involved with some Econo cars — but I migrated quickly to 6-cylinder powered cars,” he revealed.  “I recognized early that that tech was different to most and it was that which peaked my interest.  I attended the 1981 Winternationals (with Ralph Hope) and it was there that I agreed to purchase my first one — a straight six dragster — from Rich Koener.  Since that I have had a number of cars over time, including machines built by Ed Weddle and Murf McKinney.  I raced straight six or V6 cars — with a clutch — right from the start.  My current dragster was built by Mike Roth (@MR2 Performance) and that was first debuted in 2014.  It has V6 power (supplied by Stanfield Racing Engines) to a clutchless Liberty 5-speed.  The block and head combination was produced from my company (Custom Machine).” 

For Brian Browell —  V6 tech powered dragsters – is his weapon of choice.

With that line up of race cars and over his many seasons racing, Browell has certainly been and remained a force within drag racing, setting numerous national records, and racking both event wins and prestigious titles.  

“I’ve had some good seasons,” he admitted.  “Winning the NHRA Division 3 title and then going to the Jegs All Stars event (in 2017) and winning that too was pretty special — but I think I’m most proud of my record for the NHRA national event at Atlanta (Southern Nationals) — when I won that 3X in a row.”

Brian Browell’s racing career includes scoring a “natural hat trick” — winning the NHRA Southern Nationals (at Atlanta) three consecutive years (1999-2001)

At parallel with Brian’s accomplishments within drag racing is also a very impressive business success story.   He is the owner and operator of a highly reputed Custom Machine Shop which also manufactures a line of state-of-the-art bell housings (Browell Bellhousing Inc).  Brian is very proud of the fact that after a lot of hard work and investment, he was responsible for taking a company from some rather meagre beginnings to industry leading.

“I first bought Custom Machine in 1989 – it was just a small four-man shop doing everyday milling and turning,” he continued.  “In 1996 I expanded it by adding several CNC machines.  Then I bought a small bell housing company which at that time made just three steel depth versions.  Fast forward to now — we make both steel and aluminum ones – about 60 combinations.  They are used not only all over within drag racing but also for tractor pulling and street use.  Right now we employ 16 skilled people over two shifts that can machine almost anything you can image.”

Browell’s newest D/D (built by reputed MR2 Performance) – set a new national record it’s first weekend out.

Brian Browell has certainly enjoyed his very long journey within drag racing which started as a crew member back Canada in the mid 1970’s (for Jim Campbell and Gord Overbaugh).  Married to his wife (and dedicated crew chief) Debbie, he plans to continue his personal passion.

“As far as racing goes I’ve been lucky to have been around so many great influences,” he smiled.  “People like Jim Headrick, Russ Flagle, Bob DeVour, Bill Jenkins and now Greg Stanfield.  They have all been instrumental in taking me to next levels.”

Brian Browell is one of NHRA’s most accomplished and respected Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series racers.

For more background information on Brian’s company — please click on the logo below:

*Editors’s Note: While we are currently sworn to secrecy  — we can hint that some very special news including Brian Browell is forthcoming.  (Check back later with DragRaceCanada!)

Post and photos by Bruce Biegler