Variety of Experience Helps Baker in Key IHRA Role Mike Baker brings decades of experience to one of the most important jobs in the International Hot Rod Association. As the IHRA’s Senior Director of Competition and Racing Operations, Baker is the man who authors and updates the yearly rulebook. The 52-year-old, West Virginia native is a racer at heart, a former IHRA Super Stock competitor, who also has been a high-performance automotive machinist. Baker, who holds a business administration degree in marketing and management, is in his 25th year with the IHRA. He has seen the organization go from more of an emphasis on professional racing to a laser-like focus on grassroots, sportsman racing. Despite some of the negative comments, the truth is the IHRA has nearly doubled in size at the grassroots level. “I have been involved in many facets of the IHRA business model over that past 20 years,” Baker said. “ I started out as a technical official and progressed over time to designing class structures and racing programs and assist in the execution of marketing programs and strategies for all divisions and partners. “There have been many changes as with any business in the motorsports market of today. For instance we have grown from 50 member tracks in 1994 to 93 facilities in 2018. We did not really have an international presence then and now we are doing business in Canada, Aruba and Australia just to name a few.” Baker was named Regional Technical Director in 1995 where he concentrated on the professional entries. He was named National Technical Director on an interim basis in 1996 and on a permanent basis at the end of the season. Publications Ignite2X Managing Editor Jeff Birchfield Photography BME Photography Advertising Sales Dana Landry Art/Creative Ignite2X, Ashley Partenza TM IRG President & CEO Lou Partenza Senior Consultant Michael Dunn Vice President Skooter Peaco Director of New Business & Industry Relations Dana Landry Director of Public Relations Ryan Perezluha Digital Marketing & Strategy Manager Ashley Partenza Director of Creative Marketing Manfred Eissner Membership Coordinator Bobby Carville Senior Director of Competition and Racing Operations Mike Baker Divisional Directors Josh Peake, Jon O’Neal & Frank Kohutek Special Advisor For Track Development Phil Gingerich The International Hot Rod Association (IHRA) is owned and operated by IRG Sports + Entertainment™, a TPG Specialty Lending company. The IHRA promotes professional and sportsman racing for drivers of all levels. The IHRA sanctions nearly 100 motorsport facilities in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Bahama’s and welcomes 80,000 racers annually to their IHRA- sanctioned facilities. The IHRA oversees multiple Sportsman racing programs including the Summit Racing Equipment SuperSeries and the Sportsman Spectacular.