INDIANAPOLIS – Drag racing’s Labor Day weekend tradition – the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals – kicks off its historic 60th running this week at Lucas Oil Raceway with Chevrolet serving as the official truck of NHRA.
The six-day U.S. Nationals, the largest and most prestigious event in drag racing, draws professional and sportsman racers from across North America. It is the final race of the NHRA Mello Yellow Drag Racing Series regular season and sets the 10-driver field in each class for the six-race Countdown to the Championship.
“Every drag racer’s dream is to win the U.S. Nationals, and many have relied on Chevrolet power over the past six decades in pursuit of that dream,” said Jim Campbell, GM U.S. vice president of Performance Vehicles and Motorsports.
In the Pro Stock class, Chevrolet has seven of the top 10 drivers, led by Jason Line and Erica Enders-Stevens. It’s a highly competitive class, where the quickest cars can cover the quarter-mile in 6.5 seconds at 210 mph.
“Jason Line and Erica Enders-Stevens are putting Chevrolet on top of the Pro Stock field, right where it belongs,” said Campbell. “And the wheels-up action of the COPO Camaro race cars represents drag racing’s roots, when racers competed their factory performance cars.”
In the sportsman ranks, the country’s quickest COPO Camaro drivers will go head to head and fender to fender against traditional manufacturer rivals in Stock Eliminator and Super Stock classes, while hundreds of additional Chevy-powered racers will compete for wins in their respective classes.
Chevrolet leads the NHRA Manufacturers Cup standings. Chevrolet has earned that title 19 times since it was first awarded in 1964 – more than any other manufacturer.
Off the track, Chevrolet Performance celebrates the sport and supports fans with new-vehicle displays, including the all-new, 650-hp Corvette Z06 and Corvette Stingray, Camaro Z/28 and Camaro 1LE, the SS sports sedan and Sonic RS, and ride-and-drive opportunities. There will also be displays of the crate engines and new vehicle accessories – particularly for Camaro, Sonic and Silverado – that drive enthusiasts to build or personalize their own Chevy vehicles.
This year’s event will feature 12 hours of coverage on ESPN2 and ESPN2HD, including six hours of qualifying on Aug. 31 and six hours of eliminations on Monday, Sept. 1.
Silverado engineered to win
Chevrolet is also the official truck of NHRA, featuring the award-winning Silverado, the 2014 North American Truck of the Year. It delivers the capability enthusiasts can depend on whether trailering a race car or hauling fans to the track.
For 2015, Silverado 1500 adds an all-new eight-speed automatic transmission to its powertrain roster, enhancing efficiency and refinement while maintaining capability. It’s included on models equipped with the EcoTec3 6.2L V-8 engine.
All of Silverado 1500’s EcoTec3 engines offer advanced fuel-saving technology and nearly 60 years of continuous improvement of Chevrolet Small Block engines. The new eight-speed automatic helps the pickup retain its 12,000-pound maximum trailering rating under newly adapted SAE J2807 Recommended Practices.
Additionally, the entire Silverado 1500 lineup is available with features engineered for serious towing, including the available NHT max trailering package, which features a 9.76-inch rear axle, heavy-duty rear springs, revised shock tuning, enhanced cooling and an integrated trailer brake controller to make the most of capability and comfort when trailering.
The Silverado also rolls into 2015 addressing today’s ever-increasing need for advanced in-vehicle communication, including MyLink enhancements with Text Messaging Alerts, Siri Eyes Free and new, available OnStar with 4G LTE and standard built-in Wi-Fi hotspot.
Additionally, Chevrolet Silverado and Suburban models are used by NHRA’s Safety Safari team.
Driven by more than 100 years of motorsports heritage, Chevrolet Performance fuels the passions of automotive enthusiasts through high-performance vehicles, parts and racing. Performance cars include Camaro SS, SS 1LE, ZL1, Z/28 and the COPO Camaro. Chevrolet Performance parts include crate engines, transmissions, controllers and street-level components. Chevrolet competes in NASCAR, NHRA, TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, IndyCar and a variety of circle track racing series.