Word that more than a half-century of drag racing had come to an end at Raceway Park triggered a flood of memories among those who raced and cheered at the iconic New Jersey drag strip. The Napp family, which opened Raceway Park in and still operates the sprawling motorsports playground, announced Wednesday that the April-November drag racing season had been its last, including the annual Summernationals, one of the biggest events on the National Hot Rod Association's calendar. The Napps said other forms of racing, including motocross and karting, as well as concerts and annual Tough Mudder events, would continue at Raceway Park, which is located in Old Bridge but has long been associated with its Englishtown mailing address. But drag racing is what ingrained the place in the minds and hearts of many Garden State and out-of-state motorsports enthusiasts. Here are some of their reminiscences, shared on YouTube, Facebook, or via email, along with other highlights, and some darker moments, in the raceway's history. Video posted by James Burman.
Raceway Park begins demolition of dragstrip
Historic Englishtown Raceway Park Shuts Down Drag Racing - Hot Rod Network
That not only includes NHRA national events, but also local bracket racing at the track. Few details on the decision to stop all drag racing events are known. However, the track has long struggled being landlocked and unable to expand its runoff area for cars that have problems stopping under their own power. That is especially problematic for Top Fuel dragsters and Funny Cars, which are the most powerful cars in the sport and, due to the 10, horsepower they produce, often need longer stopping distances. NHRA Funny Car driver Scott Kalitta was killed in a crash at Old Bridge Raceway on June 21, , when his car was unable to stop in the runoff area and collided with a portable crane past the runoff area.
Historic Englishtown Raceway Park Shuts Down Drag Racing
After more than half a century of burning rubber, Raceway Park will no longer hold drag races, officials said. With the rising cost of fuel, tires, insurance and other expenses of speeding from a standstill to more than mph on a 1,foot track, drag racing has become too expensive for the mostly amateur racers who drive on weekends and Wednesday nights at what is officially known as Old Bridge Raceway Park , said Steve Mamakas, executive officer of the Old Bridge Township Mayor's Office of Economic Development. The storied drag strip, with its familiar radio ads that blared, "Racewaaaaay Park!