GLENDORA, Calif. (Nov. 19, 2015) – NHRA announced today that the 2016 JEGS SPORTSnationals will make its triumphant return to Beech Bend Raceway Park in Bowling Green, Ky., May 27-29.
The JEGS SPORTSnationals will comprise one event in 2016, moving back to the historic Kentucky facility owned by Dallas Jones and the Jones family on Memorial Day weekend. Beech Bend Raceway Park was the host of the original NHRA SPORTSnationals from 1974 to 1981.
“We are excited to see the JEGS SPORTSnationals return to its roots in Bowling Green,” said Eric Lotz, NHRA director of field marketing. “The event has become an integral part of Sportsman competition in the NHRA and we think Beech Bend Raceway Park is the perfect setting to showcase this great race. We know that Memorial Day weekend will be a rousing success for the Sportsman categories.”
The JEGS SPORTSnationals, the premier standalone event in the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series, will continue to be a national event with national points being awarded for all classes except Super Street, which will earn divisional championship points. New in 2016, all racers will receive an NHRA national event grade point for attending the race.
“We worked with the NHRA to enhance the JEGS SPORTSnationals for 2016,” said Scott Woodruff, director of media and motorsports for JEGS. “The event payout and contingency postings will raise to the NHRA national event level and every racer will get a grade point. Our goal is to make this the most exciting event for NHRA sportsman racers. We think having one must attend event will resonate with the NHRA sportsman racing community. Bringing the event back to Beech Bend Raceway where it started in 1974 will be special.”
Beech Bend Raceway Park is a multi-use facility located in scenic Bowling Green. Comprising a quarter-mile dragstrip, oval track and an amusement park, Beech Bend Raceway Park is one of the most family-friendly race venues in the country. The facility has also been the host of an NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series Division 3 event since 1971 and the NHRA Wally Parks Motorsport Museum’s Holley National Hot Rod Reunion® presented by AAA Insurance since 2003.
In addition to the first eight years at Beech Bend Raceway Park, the NHRA JEGS SPORTSnationals has also been contested at Houston International Dragway in 1982, then at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis in 1983-‘84 and back to Beech Bend for the 1985-'86 seasons. The race went on hiatus until 2005 when JEGS began its sponsorship of the event. Since then the race has been held at several prominent tracks and was featured in multiple races during some seasons. Tracks that have hosted the JEGS SPORTSnationals since 2005 are National Trail Raceway near Columbus, Ohio, No Problem Raceway Park in Belle Rose, La., The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Auto Club Dragway in Fontana, Calif.
JEGS been a strong supporter of the NHRA contingency programs throughout the years. JEGS is also the longtime sponsor of the JEGS Allstars race, NHRA's most prestigious sportsman specialty race that will enter its 16th year in 2016.
Additional information regarding the NHRA JEGS SPORTSnationals will be released in the coming months.