Dixon Heads Lineup of Stars Aiming for 330 MPH at Annual Northern Nationals

The importance of preserving one’s history never can be overstated, which is why US 131 Motorsports Park’s upcoming Northern Nationals (Aug. 11-12) should become a bucket list item for anyone who loves drag racing or ever marveled at the quarter mile performance of a nitromethane-burning Top Fuel car.

During the two-day event, Michigan’s fastest track will give a nod to drag racing traditionalists by featuring the world’s fastest race cars competing at the distance at which legends like “Big Daddy” Don Garlits and former Michigan resident Shirley “Cha Cha” Muldowney invariably satisfied their insatiable “need for speed.”

In an era of change, it’s an opportunity to revisit the sport’s glory days.

“Today, the NHRA only races to 1,000 feet,” explained US 131 General Manager Jason Peterson, “and the IHRA isn’t even running Top Fuel cars. Fortunately, we have a track that’s still capable of handling 10,000 horsepower on the full quarter mile.”

Topping the lineup of stars clamoring to “go the distance” is three-time NHRA World Champion Larry Dixon of Indianapolis. He will be joined by track record-holder Dom Lagana of Scarsdale, N.Y., newcomer Kyle Wurtzel of Warsaw, Ind., veteran Pat Dakin of Dayton, Ohio, Todd Payton of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan Canada in his family owned ride and a sixth driver yet to be determined.

The bulging undercard includes an eight-car field of nitro-burning nostalgia Funny Cars, six classic 1970s era fuel altereds, the four jet-powered dragsters of the Larsen Motorsports team and, finally, the “King of Quake,” Bob Motz, owner and driver of the awesome ”Original Jet Truck.”

Friday’s program features nostalgia Funny Car qualifying at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. along with the track’s test-and-tune session for racers competing the in this event from 5 p.m. until 11 p.m.

Saturday gates will open at 8am with Lane Bracket Series time trials starting at 9am (Modified, Top ET, Beg Jr, Adv Jr, Master Jr, Street and MOJO Q16).

Main Show times are 5 p.m. for first round of Nostalgia Nitro Funny Cars, 7 p.m. & 9 p.m. for Top Fuel, Nitro Fuel Altereds, Nostalgia Nitro Funny Cars, all four Jet Dragsters and Bob Motz’s Jet Kenworth Truck.

General admission tickets purchased in advance are $20 Friday and $30 Saturday. Day-of-the-event tickets are $25 and $35, respectively. Children 6-12 are $7 each day in advance and $10 each day at the gate and children five-and-under are free when accompanied by a ticketed adult. Tickets now on sale at www.us131msp.com.