NASCAR Returns to zMAX Dragway for NASCAR Night during Bank of America 500

       CONCORD, N.C. (Oct. 8, 2010) – Some of the fastest drivers, car
owners and mechanics ever to turn left will give it their all to go straight
on Tuesday, Oct. 12, as NASCAR Night returns to zMAX Dragway.
       In past NASCAR Night events, more than 100 NASCAR industry personnel
have descended on the Bellagio of drag strips to take their cars down the
concrete quarter-mile. Participants can race anything they wish down the
drag strip, making this a true “run what you brung” event. Previous NASCAR
Night drag racers included NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers Kurt Busch, Kyle
Busch, Greg Biffle and Matt Kenseth; team owner Rick Hendrick; and crew
chiefs Chad Knaus and Lance McGrew.
       “The first NASCAR Night they hosted at zMAX Dragway a couple of
years ago, I told my guys, ‘We’re going to take something that nobody can
beat,'” said Busch, who will compete on Tuesday night. “It’s a lot of fun to
go to one of the best drag strips in the world, right here in our own
backyard, and do some good old fashion, heads-up grudge racing against some
of the guys you compete against in the garage every weekend.
       “We’ll bring our ’70 Dodge Challenger that we raced with at the NHRA
Gatornationals in Gainesville (Fla.) and PINKS All Out at Charlotte earlier
in the year. We’ve put a lot of time and effort into that car and with the
cooler track temperature and night air on Tuesday, we should be able to run
in the low eights (seconds) if we can get it to stick.”
 NASCAR Night is open to the public with gates opening at 4:30 p.m. On-track
action is set for 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Fans can show a ticket to the upcoming
Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Oct. 16 and receive free
admission. Adult tickets are available at the gate for just $5 and kids are
free. All proceeds from ticket sales will go to Speedway Children’s
       Tickets for all October races at Charlotte Motor Speedway can be
purchased online at or by calling the
speedway ticket office at 1-800-455-FANS (3267). The Bank of America Fan 4
Pack includes tickets, hot dogs and Coca-Cola drinks starting at just $39.75
per person or fans can get four nights of great racing with the Bank of
America 500 Week Super Ticket for just $99.
       For daily updates on October race activities, connect with Charlotte
Motor Speedway by following on Twitter at or
become a Facebook fan at Connect
with zMAX Dragway on Facebook at and on Twitter


Get Close to Your Favorite Drivers at O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Nationals

        CONCORD, N.C. (Sept. 13, 2010) – Do you dream of meeting your
favorite NHRA drivers and getting their autographs? Think it’s impossible?
Not when every ticket is a pit pass to the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA
Nationals Thursday-Sunday at zMAX Dragway.
       When fans purchase a ticket to round two of the NHRA Full Throttle
Countdown to the Championship they will have the opportunity to see the
biggest names of the sport up close, including Larry Dixon, John Force, Cory
McClenathan and Tony Schumacher, among others.
       “The cool thing about the NHRA and our sport is that when you buy a
ticket it gets you right into the pits,” said Dixon, two-time NHRA Top Fuel
Champion in a recent interview with News 14 Carolina. “It’s not like NASCAR
or Indy Car where you can’t get on pit road or you’ve got to know somebody
to get into the pits.
       “You can just walk right up and meet John Force, get his autograph
and buy his merchandise right by his trailer. The interaction that you have
with the drivers and the crews, getting to watch them tear the cars down in
between rounds, that’s the one thing I have always liked about our sport.
You can’t go to a Carolina Panthers game and go in the locker room, but you
can come in ours!”
       This unrivaled access allows fans to shake hands, obtain autographs
and even have a face-to-face conversation with NHRA’s biggest stars. It also
gives fans a behind-the-scenes look at what it’s like to set up and tear
down a race car.
       “At zMAX Dragway alone I’ve gotten to meet and talk to John Force,
Robert Hight, Steve Johnson, Matt Smith and Melanie Troxel, along with many
others,” said NHRA fan Sherry Santana. “All the drivers are so friendly and
I admit, I’m addicted to NHRA [drag racing] and I’m looking forward to
seeing them all again in Charlotte this week.”
       The Bellagio of drag strips is located in the heart of NASCAR
country and gives stock car fans the opportunity to experience the driver
access that NHRA fans have come to know and love.
       “I think it’s important for fans to see both sides,” said
McClenathan, defending O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Nationals winner. “It shows
the stock car community there is another source of racing that’s fun for the
whole family. Buying a ticket also gets you into the pits and gives fans the
opportunity to see the full realm of the sport, from the guys working on the
car, to drivers signing autographs, you can experience a lot more at a drag
       “I think the NHRA, Full Throttle and zMAX have done a great job of
portraying our sport as different. We get a lot of people that come into the
pits and say they’ve never been there before and that they can’t wait to
come back and watch us again. They want to come back every single year.”
       Not only can fans get autographs, but many have the opportunity to
talk with their favorite drivers and learn more about the sport of drag
       “I met Top Fuel driver Antron Brown and he is the coolest,” said
drag racing fan Chris Wood. “He was mixing his fuel and described to me how
he was doing it. It was very cool. All the drivers are so friendly and take
time for us, the fans. I just love it!”
       The NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series returns to zMAX Dragway
this week for the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Nationals, the second race of the
six-race Countdown to the Championship. The four-day drag racing event held
Thursday-Sunday is sure to play a pivotal role in deciding the world
championships in NHRA’s top four professional classes.
       General admission four-pack tickets are available for only $14.75
per person on Friday and $29.75 for Saturday or Sunday. For more information
or to purchase tickets to the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Nationals, visit or call the Charlotte Motor Speedway ticket office at
1-800-455-FANS (3267).
Connect with zMAX Dragway and stay up to speed with all the happenings at
the Bellagio of drag strips on Facebook at and
on Twitter at

Let the Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship Begin!

The Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship begins Sunday, Sept. 19, as the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races for 300 laps at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, N.H., and ESPN will have a live telecast. The NASCAR Countdown pre-race show airs at noon ET on ESPN2 with the race telecast on ESPN at 1 p.m. The race’s green flag is at 1:15 p.m.
Also from New Hampshire, ESPN2 will air NASCAR Sprint Cup practice on Friday, Sept. 17, at 11:30 a.m. and qualifying at 3 p.m. Sandwiched between the on-track action will be the 2010 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup preview, a half-hour program airing at 1 p.m. Friday on ESPN2.
Marty Reid will call the action with analysis by Dale Jarrett, the 1999 NASCAR Sprint Cup champion, and two-time champion crew chief Andy Petree. Two-time champion crew chief Tim Brewer will report from the ESPN Craftsman Tech Garage, while pit reporters will be Dave Burns, Jamie Little, Dr. Jerry Punch and Vince Welch.  
NASCAR Countdown from the ESPN pit studio will be hosted by Allen Bestwick with analysis by 1989 NASCAR Sprint Cup champion driver Rusty Wallace, three-time champion crew chief Ray Evernham and Brad Daugherty, a team owner in the series. The studio team will interact with the booth during the telecast of the race.
NASCAR Star Kyle Busch Featured in New All-Access ESPN2 Series
A new and highly innovative five-part television series featuring NASCAR star Kyle Busch will air on ESPN2 the week of Sept. 13-17 to help kick off ESPN’s live coverage of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship.
Riding Shotgun: Kyle Busch, produced for ESPN by the Emmy Award-winning NASCAR Media Group, will take viewers on a week-long, all-access journey into the life of the driver of the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 M&Ms Toyota. Cameras will follow Busch starting with this weekend’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Richmond International Raceway and will continue throughout the week leading into the start of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sept. 19.
The half-hour program, which will require a less than 24-hour turnaround time for production, will debut in prime time on Monday, Sept. 13, at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN2, following the Monday roundtable edition of ESPN2’s daily NASCAR news and information program NASCAR Now. The rest of the week, Riding Shotgun: Kyle Busch will air following NASCAR Now at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, and at 6 p.m. on Thursday.
Brian Vickers Guest Panelist on NASCAR Now Roundtable
NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Brian Vickers will be a special guest and join ESPN analysts Ray Evernham and Ricky Craven as panelists on NASCAR Now’s weekly roundtable discussion program airing Monday, Sept. 20, at 5 p.m. ET on ESPN2. Allen Bestwick will host the edition of ESPN2’s daily NASCAR news and information program.
NASCAR Now will expand to one hour on Thursday, Sept. 16, at 5 p.m. as NASCAR drivers Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart and Kyle Busch will join host Nicole Briscoe in the studio to preview the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Briscoe also will welcome Matt Kenseth on Tuesday, Sept. 14, at 5 p.m. and Kevin Harvick the next day at 5 p.m. The program also airs Friday at 5 p.m. with a wrap-up of that day’s activities at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
NASCAR Now will surround Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at New Hampshire with two episodes that day. The one-hour weekend edition of NASCAR Now presented by 5 Hour Energy airs at 9 a.m. with a preview of that day’s race, while the weekend wrap-up edition airs that night at 10 p.m. Marty Smith and Angelique Chengelis will report from NHMS while Craven will join Briscoe in the studio.
NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series in Carolina
The NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series races this weekend in the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Nationals at zMax Dragway at Concord near Charlotte, N.C., and ESPN2 will air highlights of qualifying and eliminations. Qualifying action airs Sunday, Sept. 19, at 10 a.m. ET, and coverage of eliminations airs at 7 p.m. 
The newest facility in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series was an overwhelming success in its 2008 debut and again last year, when it hosted special four-wide exhibition passes in Top Fuel and Funny Car. The event holds a crucial spot on the schedule as the second event of the Countdown to 1 and the race at which teams continue to battle for traction in their title bids.
Paul Page anchors ESPN2’s coverage with analysis by 22-time NHRA winner Mike Dunn. Gary Gerould and Dave Rieff report from the pits. Rieff and Dunn host NHRA RaceDay presented by Lucas Oil on Sunday at 6:30 p.m. to set the stage for that day’s eliminations action.
Also on Sunday, drag racing fans can see 30 minutes of action featuring the NHRA Get Screened America Pro Modifieds from O’Reilly Raceway Park in Indianapolis. The program airs at 6 p.m. on ESPN2. Offers RacingLive! During New Hampshire Race
NASCAR fans looking for an online gathering during ESPN’s telecasts of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series now have a place to go on
RacingLive! on is a live blog where fans can engage in debate and discussion with writers and editors during the NASCAR Sprint Cup races. On Sunday, Sept. 19, RacingLive! New Hampshire will kick off at 1 p.m. ET to coincide with ESPN’s telecast of the race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Fans can join’s NASCAR experts in dissecting every aspect of the race live at
ESPN Radio Raceday Airs Saturday, Sunday
Each weekend morning, ESPN Radio’s RaceDay starts its engines at 6 a.m. ET with host Pat Patterson anchored from Daytona Beach, Fla. Patterson also originates the broadcast from several racetracks with key races during the season. On both Saturday and Sunday mornings, ESPN Radio’s RaceDay listeners get an hour of news, previews and analysis, as well as profiles and interviews with NASCAR’s biggest names and newsmakers and the involvement of listeners via calls and e-mails.
Additionally, many of ESPN’s NASCAR reporters and analysts contribute each week as ESPN networks televise the entire NASCAR Nationwide Series and the final 17 NASCAR Sprint Cup races, including the 10-race “Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup” championship. A list of ESPN Radio affiliates can be found at

Cory Mac Goes For Three in a Row at zMAX Dragway

CONCORD, N.C. (Sept. 8, 2010) – Two-wide or four-wide, 34-time NHRA
Top Fuel winner, Cory McClenathan, is a force to be reckoned with at zMAX
Dragway and he is looking for his third straight victory at the Bellagio of
drag strips Sept. 16-19 at the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Nationals.
McClenathan, known to his legion of nitro fans as “Cory Mac,” is the
winningest Top Fuel driver in the history of zMAX Dragway, with victories in
both the 2009 O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Nationals and this year’s inaugural
NHRA Four-Wide Nationals.
“To go into a race track knowing we’ve had the kind of success
we’ve had at zMAX Dragway is a big deal,” said McClenathan. “It takes a lot
off my shoulders. We’ve won there two-wide and four-wide and now we’re going
back for the Countdown.
“I know we’re going to the best facility for us to run the best
[elapsed time] and the big mph. I don’t have to worry about that. My job is
to go out there and step on the gas pedal when the tree comes down and
that’s all I have to worry about on Sunday.”
After being introduced to drag racing by his father, Dick
McClenathan, a former drag racer himself, Cory Mac began his racing career
at age 16 driving high-performance Volkswagens. It wasn’t until 1991 that
McClenathan first stepped into a Top Fuel dragster. Since, he has
established himself as one of the best drivers in NHRA’s elite division.
In his Top Fuel career, McClenathan has amassed 34 victories in 64
final round appearances, including three wins this season, and has recorded
504 total round wins. In addition, Cory Mac was the first driver to break
the 4.80-second elapsed time barrier (in the quarter-mile) with a
4.799-second run in Reading, Pa., in 1992 and the first to eclipse the
320-mph barrier with a 322.17-mph run in Dallas in 1997.
Hoping to continue his winning streak, Cory Mac, will return to zMAX
Dragway along with his Top Fuel brethren for round two of the six-race NHRA
Full Throttle Countdown to the Championship Sept. 16-19 at the O’Reilly Auto
Parts NHRA Nationals.
The four-day drag racing event is sure to play a pivotal role in
deciding the world championships in NHRA’s top four professional classes.
McClenathan currently sits in second place going into the O’Reilly Auto
Parts NHRA Nationals, just 46 markers behind point leader Larry Dixon in the
Top Fuel division championship standings.

Tickets for the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Nationals, Sept. 16-19, at
zMAX Dragway can be obtained by calling the Charlotte Motor Speedway ticket
office at 1-800-455-FANS (3267) or online at General
admission four-packs are available for only $14.75 per person on Friday and
$29.75 for Saturday or Sunday.
Connect with zMAX Dragway and stay up to speed with all the
happenings at the Bellagio of drag strips on Facebook at and on Twitter at