Ontario’s major event drag racing scene will have a very different look and feel in 2015 following some rather dramatic developments during the off-season….
Here is a condensed version of what is a rather long and complicated story which will see the emergence of a new drag racing series to possibly the detriment of another.
In recent weeks the apparently well funded Napa Auto Parts/Ideal Supply “Ultimate Showdown” series was revealed and has since gained traction with it’s announcement of three major events this summer – two at Grand Bend Motorplex and one at TMP Cayuga (during the Canadian Nitro Nationals). Initial pre-season hype for those three events suggest that participating racers will benefit from very high payouts in Pro Modified, Top Sportsman and Top Dragster class categories.
On the receiving end of this news is the long time established Ontario-based circuit mainstay – the PMRA — and to a possibly lesser degree it’s sister Quick 32 and PBSS series’.
Race fans will recall that during the just past 2014 season the event schedule at Cayuga Dragway at TMP did not include any PMRA, Quick 32 or PBSS series participation. Without going into all the details on that – lets just say that a failure to resolve a conflict between track management and circuit management resulted in the ’14 season void.
Complicating things however now for the PMRA is that Grand Bend Motorplex has chosen to align itself fully with the “Ultimate Showdown” series – the owners and directors of which were previously major partners and sponsors for their racing facility. Also with the IHRA re-introducing it’s own Pro Mod class category for this year’s Mopar Canadian Nationals (June 26-28th) the PMRA who have had a history at that race, will not be participants going forward.
With these dynamic changes the “elephant in the room” question right now is — can the PMRA survive? With the vast majority of it’s racers based in and around Southern Ontario and now being effectively shut out at either of the provinces two major drag strips — the writing on the wall is probably apparent.
Normally at this point in the season the PMRA has announced it’s 2015 racing schedule – which includes both Canada and one or two annual ventures into the USA (i.e.: US 131 in Michigan) — and that has not yet happened. There is a three or four race series for PMRA’s affilated Quick 32 and PBSS racers in the works – but exact details on that are yet to be announced.
So for area drag racing fans these are the realities and topics for discussion.
Right now there will only be 3 major Pro Mod events this summer in Ontario versus what has historically been 5-6 PMRA races per previous seasons. After a run of 10 years of dedication and leading the charge for Ontario’s drag racing scene — the future for this incumbant is in very real trouble. The reasons behind, the fairness and the question of loyaity of all that will be subject to debate going forward.
DragRaceCanada remains 100% neutral and our objective and mission to support and promote Canadian drag racing on a positive basis is ongoing. We do hope however that the future will include more dialogue and be conciliatory.
We are not convinced that for the sport of drag racing in Canada to grow that — “less is necessarily more”.
Posted by: Bruce Biegler