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Recent weather delays postpone opening of Dragway 42. IHRA World Nationals will be held in 2016.

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Dragway 42, in West Salem, Ohio, is entering the concrete and paving phase of their massive reconstruction of the entire racing facility. The relentless Ohio rain patterns have greatly stalled progress of laying track and pit road surfaces. 

General Manager, Joe Gambino said. “It will not stop raining long enough for us to make progress on our most important feature – the racing surface. The weather has also affected other stages of construction such as the Musco lighting. It took 2 weeks longer than necessary because it rained so frequently that the crane could not be moved around the facility.” The IHRA and Dragway 42 staff deeming it too close to predict completion by the planned World Nationals Nitro Jam on September 11th and 12th, 2015.

“We want to point out to everyone, first and foremost, that Dragway 42 will still be working towards a schedule that should see an opening yet this season. IHRA will be instrumental in assisting Dragway 42 in preparation of the fresh racing surface when that time comes.” Scott Gardner, President of IHRA continues, “We admire the massive effort that Ron Matcham and his crew have accomplished in transforming Dragway 42 into a world class track and we look forward to many great IHRA events there in 2016 and beyond.”

The relieved pressure of a Nitro Jam deadline will greatly help the construction crews to continue to focus on quality and not simply meeting an opening date deadline. The upcoming fall “soft opening events” for Dragway 42 will be a good starting point for the Dragway 42 staff to perfect facility operations.

Skooter Peaco, IHRA’s Vice President of Race Operations comments, “We also wanted to give our IHRA sportsman competitors as much time as possible to reconsider their racing schedule when it comes to points competition in the Summit Pro-Am Tour. There will not be a replacement event added to the schedule this late in the season.  IHRA has certainly been plagued by rain this season and we understand that a lot of the scheduled completion dates that Ron and his crew were working towards hinged upon favorable weather.  Anyone that has participated in our sport understands the impact bad weather has on a facility.”  

The redesign of Dragway 42 began in 2014 by stripping the old track to ground level and excavating over one million yards of dirt over an additional 130 acres of space from the original track. The track’s late phases of construction include a state of the art timing tower and a racing surface that will be approximately 40 feet below ground level to create amphitheater style spectator viewing area.

For more information concerning IRG Sports + Entertainment™ and the International Hot Rod Association™ (IHRA), visit ihra.com. For more information concerning Dragway 42, contact at (440)-458-5571 or visit dragway42.com.

Last modified on Wednesday, 22 July 2015

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