GLENDORA, Calif. (Dec. 18, 2015) – NHRA officials today announced that the 330-mph speed and excitement of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series will return to Kansas’ capital city in 2016.
NHRA officials were able to reach an agreement quickly with Heartland Park Topeka’s new ownership group, Heartland Park Topeka, LLC, led by Chris Payne and Todd Crossley.
The 28th annual NHRA Kansas Nationals will be contested May 20-22 at Heartland Park Topeka, one of the quickest and fastest drag strips in the world. The event, which will be televised live on Fox Sports 1 (FS1), will be race No. eight in the regular season, bringing the season total of events for the NHRA Mello Yello Series to 24.
“Heartland Park Topeka has such a great history with NHRA as the site of many performance milestones and record-setting achievements. We are looking forward to continuing that legacy with today’s announcement,” said Peter Clifford, NHRA president. “The fans in the Topeka and Kansas City area are some of the most passionate in the country and we are excited for them to be able to continue to enjoy the NHRA Mello Yello Series. And for NHRA Sportsman racers, the track is one of the busiest in that region, and it will continue to offer many racing opportunities for those hot rodding enthusiasts.”
Said Payne: “We’re honored and excited to work with NHRA and ensure drag racing will once again thrive in Topeka for years to come. We’re grateful to be a part of such a great community who loves all forms of racing and look forward to revitalizing one of Topeka’s greatest assets.”
In addition to back-to-back divisional events in the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series in late July, NHRA will offer a full menu of sportsman racing action at Heartland Park Topeka, including the NHRA Summit Racing Series, NHRA Summit Racing Jr. Drag Racing League, NHRA Jr. Street and the NHRA Drags: Street Legal Style presented by AAA.
“We thank new owner Chris Payne for his commitment to NHRA drag racing,” Clifford added. “His love for the sport and commitment to the Heartland Park facility should be a big win for the Topeka community and for all of our racers.”
The full 2016 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series schedule is below.
Headquartered in Glendora, Calif., NHRA is the primary sanctioning body for the sport of drag racing in the United States. NHRA presents 24 national events featuring the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series and NHRA J&A Service Pro Mod Drag Racing Series. NHRA provides competition opportunities for drivers of all levels in the NHRA Summit Racing Series and the NHRA Drags: Street Legal Style presented by AAA. NHRA also offers NHRA Jr. Street for teens and the Summit Racing Jr. Drag Racing League for youth ages 5 to 17. In addition, NHRA owns and operates five racing facilities: Atlanta Dragway in Georgia; Gainesville Raceway in Florida; National Trail Raceway in Ohio; Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis; and Auto Club Raceway at Pomona in Southern California. For more information, log on to NHRA.com, or visit the official NHRA pages on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.
2016 NHRA MELLO YELLO DRAG RACING SERIES SCHEDULE
NHRA MELLO YELLO SERIES REGULAR SEASON
56th annual Circle K NHRA Winternationals Feb. 11-14
32nd annual CARQUEST Auto Parts NHRA Nationals Feb. 26-28
47th annual Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals March 17-20
Gainesville, Fla. (PSM)
17th annual NHRA Silver State Nationals April 1-3
Seventh annual NHRA Four-Wide Nationals April 22-24
Charlotte, N.C. (PSM)
29th annual NHRA SpringNationals April 29-May 1
36th annual Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals May 13-15
28th annual NHRA Kansas Nationals May 20-22
Fourth annual NHRA New England Nationals June 3-5
47th annual NHRA Summernationals June 9-12
Englishtown, N.J. (PSM)
16th annual NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals June 17-19
10th annual Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals June 23-26
Norwalk, Ohio (PSM)
19th annual Route 66 NHRA Nationals July 7-10
37th annual Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals July 22-24
29th annual Toyota NHRA Sonoma Nationals July 29-31
Sonoma, Calif. (PSM)
29th annual NHRA Northwest Nationals Aug. 5-7
35th annual Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals Aug. 18-21
Brainerd, Minn. (PSM)
62nd annual Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals Aug. 31-Sept. 5
NHRA MELLO YELLO COUNTDOWN TO THE CHAMPIONSHIP
Ninth annual NHRA Carolina Nationals Sept. 16-18
Charlotte, N.C. (PSM)
Fifth annual AAA Insurance NHRA Midwest Nationals Sept. 23-25
St. Louis (PSM)
32nd annual NHRA Keystone Nationals Sept. 29-Oct. 2
Reading, Pa. (PSM)
32nd annual AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals Oct. 13-16
16th annual NHRA Toyota Nationals Oct. 27-30
Las Vegas (PSM)
52nd annual Auto Club NHRA Finals Nov. 10-13
Pomona, Calif. (PSM)