First Ever Cacklefest, Jet Dragsters and Pro Bike Battle Highlight NHRA Sonoma Nationals
The shaking in Sonoma Valley will be off the Richter Scale as the 10,000 horsepower machines of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series return for the NHRA Sonoma Nationals this weekend, July 31-Aug. 2.
For the first time at Sonoma Raceway, a collection of nostalgia Top Fuel dragsters will light up the night, as they fire up their engines for a can't-miss Cacklefest on Friday night in front of the main grandstand. The fan-favorite jet dragsters will also return on Friday and Saturday following the final nitro qualifying sessions.
As always, fans are encouraged to enjoy the open pits, get autographs from their favorite drivers and enjoy all the activities the raceway has in store. Here's a glimpse at what fans can enjoy during race weekend:
Thursday, July 30
Eric Medlen Nitro Night Dinner Fans are invited to honor the memory of NHRA driver Eric Medlen at the 9th annual Eric Medlen Nitro Night Dinner on Thursday, July 30, at Bay Club Stone Tree. Top NHRA racers, including Ron Capps, Jack Beckman and Courtney and Brittany Force, will attend and cost is $125 per person. All proceeds benefit Speedway Children's Charities in Medlen's name. Contact Cheri Plattner at 707-933-3950 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Friday Nostalgia Cacklefest For the first time at Sonoma Raceway, a collection of nostalgia Top Fuel dragsters will fire up their engines in front of the main grandstand for a can't-miss demonstration. The Cacklefest is slated just prior to the second pro qualifying session.
Saturday NHRA Pro Bike Battle
The NHRA Pro Bike Battle returns as a race-within-a-race on Saturday. The riders who have accumulated the most qualifying points since last year's NHRA Sonoma Nationals have earned a berth in the Pro Bike Battle. It's sure to add an additional layer of excitement to the lightening-quick Pro Stock Motorcycle action this weekend.
Kids-Only Autograph Session with Don Schumacher Racing (10 a.m.-10:30 a.m.)
Sonoma Raceway and Don Schumacher Racing invite kids to an autograph session with some of the biggest stars in the NHRA, including Spencer Massey, Ron Capps and 2014 NHRA Funny Car World Champion Matt Hagan.
Ron Capps Sonoma Raceway Wall of Fame Induction
Ron Capps, four-time Sonoma Funny Car Champion (1997, 2010, '11 and '13), will be inducted into the Sonoma Raceway Wall of Fame during pre-event ceremonies on Sunday.
Sonoma Starting Line Party (9:30 a.m.)
Defending NHRA world champions Matt Hagan (Funny Car), Tony Schumacher (Top Fuel), Erica Enders (Pro Stock) and Andrew Hines (Pro Stock Motorcycle) will take part in a Q&A at the starting line before race fans are invited to enjoy a walk down the drag strip. Fans can add the Starting Line Party to a race ticket for just $20. Upgrades are available at the entrance to the track next to the Wine Country Winner's Circle.
Racer Introductions Join us in front of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series stage for racer introductions before final eliminations.
Eric Medlen Ice Cream Social
Join us as we honor late Funny Car racer Eric Medlen after final round eliminations on Sunday. Fans are invited onto the race surface for a free scoop of ice cream, compliments of Save Mart Supermarkets. Fans are also encouraged to donate to Speedway Children's Charities.
6th Annual Nostalgia Get Together
Visit the Nostalgia Get Together inside the main paddock garages to check out a stellar collection of 40 vintage dragsters, hot rods and more.
5th Annual Blast on the Grass
Check out the Blast on the Grass Car Show featuring hot rods, muscles cars, rat rods and exotics. This great display will be located on the Piccinini Plaza lawn behind the staging lanes. Don't miss it!
Track Talk (2 p.m. & 3 p.m.)
Head to the Wine Country Winner's Circle on Friday afternoon and ask your favorite NHRA drag racer a question! This year's lineup includes Funny Car drivers Ron Capps, Del Worsham and Jack Beckman; Top Fuel Drivers Shawn Langdon, Richie Crampton, Dave Connolly and JR Todd; and Pro Stock Motorcycle riders Hector Arana, Adam Arana and Hector Arana Jr.
Sonoma Raceway Girls
Be sure and say hello to the popular Raceway Girls this weekend! Don't miss your chance to have your picture taken with them! And be sure and pick up a Raceway Girls poster at the Ticket Pit Stop behind the main grandstand.
Visit Nitro Alley to visit interactive displays, merchandise haulers and to check out cars on display.
Get all the latest NHRA merchandise at the Nitro Mall, which features gear from your favorite racers.
Ticket Pit Stop
Stop by the Ticket Pit Stop, located behind the Main Grandstand in the paddock. You'll get answers to all of your questions, plus news about upcoming events. The grandstand location is also the site of the Speedway Children's Charities booth where you can purchase $1 raffle tickets to win the Wine Country getaway, which includes a two-night stay at Sonoma Mission Inn, including a $300 gift certificate, a $100 gift card to Girl and the Fig, a dinner for two at Santé, a tour and tasting for six at Keller Estates Winery, and a retro themed filled cooler with Sears Point branded memorabilia.
CHP Designate a Sober Driver Booth
Visit the California Highway Patrol Designate a Sober Driver Booth in the main paddock to pledge to be the designated sober driver for your group. Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
For Food & Beverage Lovers
NEW!! Tito's Vodka Bar
The official Vodka partner of Sonoma Raceway is bringing the party to the drag races with the Tito's Vodka Bar. The American-made vodka distillery will host four locations throughout the weekend (two in the main paddock, two behind tower grandstands), each with a selection of signature Tito's Vodka cocktails, as well as the ability to craft your personal favorites.
Located beneath the Main Grandstand, this stand features the raceway's own specially-roasted coffee bean espresso drinks, Artisan pastries, salads, fresh fruit and vegetable cups, and gluten-free items. Another featured item will be the Conewich, a bread cone filled with Caesar or Cobb salad.
Sears Point Grill
The fan-favorite concession stand is back and features handmade Niman Ranch burgers and locally-sourced lamb sausages.