Gainesville FL - Duane Shields, didn’t make it to the NHRA Gatornationals Winner's Circle this time but still had a good weekend by making it to the semi-finals before getting stopped by a loss of traction. “I’m disappointed. We were on a roll and thought we were heading for another final round appearance but it didn’t work out this time” Duane said.

Duane qualified the PEAK A/Fuel Dragster in the top half of the field with a scorching 5.22 at 274 MPH. His qualifying run was good for 4th in the final run order of the Top Alcohol Dragster class.

In round one, Duane easily disposed of Robin Samsel. Duane was on his game and won the round at both ends of the track as he beat Samsel off the line with an 0.053 to his 0.084. At the finish line it was Duane taking the win with a 5.29 at 271 MPH to Samsel’s valiant 5.34 at 264 MPH.

In round two, Duane faced off with Jordan Vandergriff. At the hit, Vandergriff got the stating line advantage but didn’t have the power to over come the PEAK Dragster as Duane made up for his slight starting line deficit instantly with a potent 5.23 at 276 MPH to Vandergriff’s slower 5.37 at 273 MPH.

In the semifinals, Duane raced Josh Hart. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the close race that everyone was expecting. Hart got the starting line advantage and never looked back as he scored the victory with a 5.27 at 273 MPH. Sadly for Duane, he immediately went up in smoke at the tap of the throttle and had to reluctantly conceded the race. “The weather warmed up and the track got a little tricky and we lost traction. Some of the cars that were running hard all weekend began to smoke the tires as well” Duane said.

The PEAK team will take a brief break after three races in a row and then return to action April 20-22 when they move on to Virginia Motorsports Park for a Lucas Oil Regional event. Duane would like to thank his great sponsors: PEAK Antifreeze and Motor Oil, Final Charge, Blue Def, NGK, GRP and Brad Anderson Enterprises for their...
Gainesville FL - Duane Shields in the PEAK A/Fuel Dragster improved over last week’s runner up finish to grab a big win at the NHRA Lucas Oil Regional event held one week prior to the Mac Tools NHRA Gatornationals contested at the same track. The win ends a long drought for one of drag racing’s more popular stars in the Top Alcohol Dragster category. “I hate to say how long it’s been since we won last, but it feels really good to get the win for my team and my sponsors" Duane said after the event.

Duane qualified 6th in a very competitive field with a 5.29 at 276 MPH. “It didn’t start out well, there were some delays so we only got two chances to qualify. We had to abort the first run so on the second run we had to concentrate on just getting into the show. It was a really tough field with seven cars in the 5.30’s or better” Duane said.

In round one, Duane took on Jackie Fricke fresh off her win over Duane last week in Belle Rose. At the hit, Duane got off the line first with a 0.063 to Fricke’s 0.073. Duane never trailed and took the stripe with a stout 5.23 at 276 MPH over Fricke’s competitive 5.34 at 270 MPH. “We stepped it up in the first round and kept the same tune up in the car the rest of the race” Duane explained.

In the semifinals, Duane raced Justin Ashley. As the cars left the starting line, Ashley had a great 0.021 light but that was it as he had problems and shut off early. Meanwhile, Duane kept his consistency going with a 5.24 at 275 MPH to win the round and go on to the finals for the second week in a row.

In the final round, Duane faced Jeff Veale who was also having a very consistent weekend. On paper, it looked to be a very tight race as both teams had similar performances throughout the day. As the lights came down, Veale made the most of it with an 0.017 reaction time to Duane’s decent 0.023. As predicted, it was a close race all the way to the finish line with Duane getting a well deserved win with a 5.27 at 274 MPH to Veale’s close...
GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Second-generation nitro racer Justin Ashley learned a lot in his first season of Top Alcohol Dragster.
Ashley, who pilots the Epic Motorsports Marketing/Realty Warehouse A/Fuel Dragster for Randy Meyer, learned quickly to keep his emotions in check, even when he had plenty to get emotional about.
"What works best for me is keeping the emotions out of it - being mechanical.," explained Ashley, a two-time winner in 2017. " And that’s something I learned from my father and Frank Hawley. Get in the car and do the same thing every time. It doesn’t matter if it’s the first round of qualifying or the fourth round of eliminations on Sunday. You just put all your emotions to the side, don’t get too high, don’t get too low. Just get in the car, do your job. There’s plenty of time at the finish line to show your emotions."
Ashley proved a quick study as he laid down a No. 1 qualifier in his first outing, the NHRA Division 2 opener in Gainesville, Fla. A week later, he drove his way to the winner's circle at the NHRA Gatornationals. And for good measure, he added a No. 1 qualifier at the prestigious NHRA U.S Nationals and a second win in Brainerd, Minn.
Ashley will make his 2018 racing debut this weekend at the Lucas Oil NHRA Division 2 event this weekend in Gainesville, Fla. He's a much different driver than the unproven rookie who rolled through the gates last March.
"My nerve level was probably closer to 10 then, especially going into that race," Ashley said. "But at the same time when it was time to go and sit in the car and actually drive my nerves definitely calmed down a lot, and I was able to just focus on what I had to do. There was a lot of anticipation. A lot going on inside and outside the car at that time. But thanks to Randy and the team I was able to learn and grow as a driver.
"Relative to now where things are a little bit different. I’m looking at things a little bit different having those passes under my belt. You still get those...
Belle Rose LA - The PEAK Dragster’s stellar performance in 2018 continues as Duane Shields made it to the final round at the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Race Series Regional at No Problem Raceway located in Belle Rose, Louisiana. “I wish we would have won but this was good since we haven’t been to a final round in a while” Duane said after the event.

Duane ended up third on the qualifying ladder with a 5.44 at 215 MPH and faced former Top Fuel stand out, Spencer Massey, in round one. Massey ended up being a no show but ready or not the PEAK team slapped down a 5.24 at 273 MPH which was low ET for the first round of competition. “The car ran right where we wanted it to in the first round” Duane explained.

In the semi-final round, the PEAK team had Buddy Domingue on their hands. Unfortunately, the race was over at the starting line as Domingue red lit giving the win to Duane. Domingue ran a very competitive 5.27 at 275 MPH to Duane’s slightly slower 5.30 at 272 MPH but it was all for not due to the starting line infraction.

In the finals, Duane faced friendly competitor Jackie Fricke who had ran an impressive 5.27 in the second round. At the hit Fricke got off the line first with an 0.058 reaction time to Duane’s 0.068. At the finish line, Fricke got the win with a solid 5.30 at 272 MPH to Duane’s close 5.34 at 272 MPH. “The car ran a little slower in the second round so we gave it a little more power for the finals but it didn’t respond” Duane said.

The PEAK team now moves on to Florida where Duane has won the regional event in Gainesville and the NHRA Gatornationals three times. “This is the start of three races in a row and this weekend gives us a lot of confidence going into Florida” Duane said. Duane would like to thank PEAK Antifreeze and Motor Oil, Final Charge, Blue Def, NGK, GRP and Brad Anderson Enterprises for supporting the team in 2018.

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After helping the Randy Meyer Racing Team earn the number 1 qualifying spot at the NHRA Pomona Winternationals, with Julie Nataas driving, Megan Meyer is ready to kick off her Junior year in the Top Alcohol Dragster class at the Nitro in the Bayou event. Megan and the Randy Meyer Racing Team will be competing for their second consecutive title at the Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series’ (LODRS) Central Regional race on March 2-4 with teammate Julie Nataas driving the team’s second dragster.

“I’m stoked to be back in Louisiana,” said Megan. “Our first year ever here, in 2016, we finished second, and won the next year. This track is one of my favorite’s because of the great weather, fun competition, and amazing fans.”

Megan’s win at the Nitro at the Bayou event last year lead to her NHRA Central Region Championship, the 7th LODRS points win for the Randy Meyer Racing Team. Megan also collected wins at Gainesville, Topeka, and Earlville, and Runnered-Up at Tulsa for an almost perfect score. This year, Megan is looking to repeat.

“Our team is one of the best in the business, and we’ve put in countless hours this off season to make these two cars the best in our class,” said Megan. “I know we have enough data, parts, and equipment to have both cars reach the final round this weekend. We raised the bar high last year, and hope to exceed expectations in 2018.”

As the Randy Meyer-led team moves on to their first LODRS regional race after having a short outing at the Winternationals, they applied a new wrap on both cars, provided by Fineline Graphics, for a fresh, new look for 2018. Megan will hold her NGK livery for the entire 2018-2019 seasons, and will share the driver’s seat with Julie following this event. The second car, formerly driven by Randy Meyer, will sport a Randy Meyer themed wrap for driver’s Justin Ashley, Bill Litton, and Rachel Meyer. Tune into...

– Nostalgia funny car driver Steve Easton will be behind the wheel of the Burnin’ Money nitro funny car at this year’s 60th annual March Meet at Auto Club Famoso Raceway in Bakersfield, March 1-4.

The Brisbane, Australia native will make his fourth appearance at the historic event driving a 1972 Plymouth Cuda for Bob Godfrey Racing. Easton previously competed in this annual event from 2013-2015 as well as the Hot Rod Reunion held during the fall.

“It’s always a thrill to drive Bob’s car,” said Easton. “We are all great friends and have heaps of fun at the race track. I’m hoping to make some more progress on the tune-up of the car and of course I want to be the first Australian to win the March Meet in a funny car.”

The event kicks off on Thursday, March 1, with time trials for Hot Rod, D/Gas, C/Gas, Nostalgia Elim. 3, Nostalgia Elim. 2, B/Gas, Nostalgia Elim. 1, A/Gas and Hot Rod slated to begin at 9 a.m. (PT). Group 1 Qualifying Session 1 is scheduled for 2 p.m., followed by the Nitro Testing Session at 3 p.m. Fans can view the full event schedule by heading to

To stay up-to-date on the latest Easton Motorsport news, follow @EastonMotorsport on Facebook and Instagram.

$11,600 for Top Alcohol Qualifiers at Cavalcade of Stars in Norwalk
Provided by Summit Motorsports Park as added incentive

NORWALK, Ohio - Summit Motorsports Park is putting up a total of $11,600 for drivers qualifying in Top Alcohol Funny Car and Top Alcohol Dragster at the 12th Annual Cavalcade of Stars presented by Budweiser, May 18-20, 2018 at Summit Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio.

In Top Alcohol Funny Car, which features 270-plus mph vehicles, and Top Alcohol Dragster, which features 285-plus mph vehicles, the payout for qualifying includes $1,000 for first, $900 for second, $800 for third, $700 for fourth, $600 for fifth, $500 for sixth, $400 for seventh, $300 for eighth and $150 for ninth through twelfth place qualifiers.

That’s in addition to an already plentiful payout in those categories — the quickest and fastest of the event which traditionally welcomes the largest audience on the annual NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series North Central Division tour — as winners will receive $2,500, while runners-up will receive $1,5000, semifinalists will receive $1,000 and quarterfinalists will receive $750. All of that pushes the total purse to close to $30,000.

“The last time I checked, a 260-plus mph dragster or Funny Car is damn exciting to watch,” said Bill Bader Jr., president of Summit Motorsports Park. “Our Top Alcohol classes are critical to our long-term sustainability, and the additional $11,600 is money well-invested.”

Additional details about the event will be released soon. Summit Motorsports Park, which is currently undergoing a $1.6 million track reconstruction project, is at 1300 State Route 18, Norwalk, Ohio. For information, call 419-668-5555 or visit

Mary Lendzion
Summit Motorsports Park Media and Public Relations
313-686-0776 or
When it comes to consistency which is extremely critical to be successful in NHRA drag racing, Duane Shields in the PEAK A/Fuel Dragster was on the money all weekend at the Lucas Oil NHRA Winternationals with incredible elapsed times on every pass. Consider these numbers: on the opening pass the PEAK Dragster ran a blistering 5.24 at 274 MPH. In the second stanza, the popular Nevada standout ran a 5.21 at 274 MPH. In the final session, Duane rang up another sizzling pass as he posted his second 5.24 of the event to land third on the qualifying ladder.

In the first round, Duane took on number 14 qualifier, Garret Bateman, driving the Rick Henkelman owned A/Fuel Dragster. As the cars launched, Duane was on his game and got out of the box first with an 0.056 reaction time to Bateman’s 0.058. It was a close side by side race to the finish line with Bateman slightly ahead. At the stripe it was Bateman taking a narrow win with a 5.28 at 274 MPH to Duane’s close 5.30 at 275 MPH. “We ran well all weekend and would have likely won most of the other match ups. We didn't change anything but I think the track was just a hair better than we thought it would be. I'm not going to dwell on it. We'll move on from here encouraged that we have a competitive car to start the year” Duane said.

With the season opening race now in the books the PEAK Team will prepare for a series of races in the Southeast beginning in Bella Rose, Louisiana on March 2-4. Duane would like to thank his returning sponsors PEAK Antifreeze and Motor Oil, Final Charge, Blue Def, NGK, GRP and Brad Anderson Enterprises for their continued support.

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POMONA, Calif. - System 1 Filters has teamed up with Will Hanna of to present 'behind the scenes' coverage of this weekend's Lucas Oil Winternationals at Auto Club Raceway in Pomona, Calif. Hanna will be posting video interviews and analysis to the System 1 Facebook page. Click the link to follow.
Krista Baldwin Kicks Off the Season at the Winternationals with WIX Filters®, Bumper to Bumper and Hanson Distributing

POMONA, CA (February 7, 2018) – The NHRA season will kick off this weekend at the Lucas Oil Winternationals, the home track for A/Fuel driver Krista Baldwin. Baldwin will begin her season collaborating with WIX Filters®, Bumper to Bumper and Hanson Distributing.

Bumper to Bumper Parts Stores and Certified Service Centers are a part of the Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance, one of the largest auto parts distribution networks in the world. Hanson Distributing of Azusa, CA is one of the premier distributors of WIX Filters under the Bumper to Bumper alliance.

“We’re thrilled to be supporting Krista as she takes on the Winternationals this weekend,” says Jennifer Gibson, brand manager for WIX Filters. “NHRA is such an exciting sport, and WIX is proud to be under the hood of her A/Fuel dragster.”

“Being in the aftermarket myself, I understand the importance of a strong relationship between manufacturers and distributors,” says Krista Baldwin, creative director of McLeod Racing. “I am so pumped to begin the 2018 season with WIX Filters and Bumper to Bumper. Highlighting their accomplishments together is truly an honor and I can’t wait to represent them at my home track.”

During off-season, team owner Anthony Dicero and Baldwin assembled a new A/Fuel dragster to debut this weekend. It is a Don Schumacher Racing chassis and is equipped with CP Carrillo rods and pistons, Clevite/Mahle bearings, Manton push rods, Strange Engineering rear-end, Weld Wheels, Lucas Oil products, TBM Brakes and a Boninfante/McLeod Racing clutch.

“Actually helping put together this dragster pushed my confidence over the top,” explains 24-year-old Baldwin. “I’ve watched it transform from a bare chassis on saw horses to a race-ready dragster prepared to make our Q1 debut on Thursday.”

McLeod Racing will also continue their efforts to support...