by Tim Glover – photos by Wanda Glover
33rd ANNUAL SUMMIT RACING EQUIPMENT NHRA SOUTHERN NATIONALS COMING TO ATLANTA DRAGWAY MAY 3-5
For the 33rd year in a row, the largest, loudest and fastest event of the year for Commerce, GA will be coming to Atlanta Dragway on May 3-5, 2013, featuring all the greats of the sport: Top Fuel Dragsters, Top Fuel Funny Cars and Pro Stockers.
In addition to the Top Fuel and Pro Stock thunder, tens of thousands of race fans will enjoy seven other classes featuring the top drivers in each category. Every ticket into the event is also a pit pass, where one can get up close to the racers, and watch as they reconstruct their race cars between each round of racing or simply get an autograph. The ever popular John Force racing team has expanded into Top Fuel Dragster for 2013, featuring another John Force daughter, Brittany Force. Courtney Force will be returning to compete again in Top Fuel Funny Car, alongside her dad John.
Hot off his third NHRA Top Fuel Dragster win in Houston, Texas, Bob Vandergriff Jr from Alpharetta, GA is returning with his Rob Flynn tuned C&J Energy Top Fuel Dragster. Vandergriff will be joined by the other Houston Pro winners; Cruz Pedregon (Funny Car) and Jason Line (Pro Stock). All will be gunning for their second win in a row.
However, the 2012 Southern Nationals winners, Steve Torrence (Top Fuel), Ron Capps (Funny Car) and Jason Line’s Summit Racing teammate, Greg Anderson are going to do their best to stop them.
On the local side, six-time NHRA Pro Stock Champion Warren Johnson from Sugar Hill, GA is returning to the action with his 2010 Pontiac GXP along with son Kurt, in a 2010 Pontiac.
There are many former Atlanta Dragway regulars pre-entered, including Ronnie Wilkerson in Super Gas (’92 Grand Prix), Jerry Sosebee in Super Comp (’97 Mullis dragster), David Simmons (’65 Chevy II wagon), Jacob Rutledge in Stock Eliminator (’89 Camaro) and Super Street (’79 Capri) and several more.
500 E. Ridgeway Road
Commerce, GA 30529
Elevation: 1,100 feet
Tickets: NHRATix.com; 800-884-NHRA (6472)
Radio Frequency: 96.7 FM
How to Get There: The track is about 65 miles north of Atlanta on Interstate 85 at U.S. Highway 441. From Atlanta, take I-85 north to Exit 149 (Highway 441). Travel north on Highway 441 to Steven Tanger Boulevard. Go left on Tanger Boulevard, then right on E. Ridgeway Road, and follow the signs to the track (approximately a half-mile on the right).