From the 330-mph nitro-burning machines of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, to the kings of chaos that are monster trucks, to a wide variety of grassroots quarter-mile racing action, the 2018 Bristol Dragway schedule offers something for every type of hot-rodding enthusiast.
Highlighted by the 18th annual NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals on Father’s Day weekend, June 15-17, the historic dragstrip will showcase the thunderous engines and extreme speeds of the exotic machines in Top Fuel, Funny Car, Pro Stock, Nitro Harley and Pro Mod, creating a unique experience for Dad and plenty of high-performance thrills for the entire family. Every ticket is a pit pass, providing guests with unparalleled access to drivers and teams throughout the weekend. Single day tickets start at just $25. Families are encouraged to come to the track on Father’s Day for Doughnuts with Dad and when kids 12-and-under are free.
The awesome spectacle of the NHRA marquee circuit’s only stop in the state of Tennessee isn’t the only reason for area drag racing fans to be excited about in 2018. There’s so much more.
“Thunder Valley has earned a solid reputation over many decades for showcasing the quickest and fastest drag racing machines on the planet,” said Jerry Caldwell, general manager of Bristol Motor Speedway and Dragway. “In 2018, Bristol Dragway will once again provide a full menu of the best drag racing programs across America, such as the NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals, Thompson Metal Monster Truck Madness presented by Beef ‘O’ Brady’s, the Bristol Chevy Show, the Fitzgerald Peterbilt truck show, the NHRA Junior Drag Racing League Eastern Conference Finals and many more memorable events.”
Thunder Valley will open for its 53rd season in early April with the DER Bracket Racing Series. DER returns for its 10th season with six weekends of racing that features categories ranging from Super Pro to Junior Dragsters.
Street Fights returns in 2018 with a new look and feel. The event now moves to five select Saturdays (April 28, May 12, June 30, August 4 and September 8) and will showcase expanded programming including drifting events, audio competitions, nightly contests and much more. As always, drag racing enthusiasts will be able to tackle the famed quarter-mile in street legal rides. Gates will open at 5 p.m. with racing beginning at 6. Admission for guests is $10 and racers can compete for $15 ($20 for trailered racers).
Last season’s newest event, the Fitzgerald Peterbilt Truck Show returns to the calendar May 4-5. In its second year, the event puts a spotlight on some of the most beautiful and sophisticated semi-trucks in the world. It’s an event every big rig enthusiast will want to attend.
Once again, Bristol will play host to one of the largest Chevy shows in the country, Sept. 28-30. The Bristol Chevy Show will offer a glimpse of many of the best classic and modern Chevrolets in the region.
The Bristol Chevy Show will once again be paired with the exciting Beef ‘O’Brady’s Thunder Valley Mayhem, which will feature fast cars, exhibition racing and exciting entertainment for the whole family. Complete with fireworks, the extravaganza will be held Saturday evening, Sept. 29.
Thunder Valley has always thrived due to hosting every type of drag racing event. During the latter half of the season, Bristol Dragway is home to three of the largest bracket races in the country, giving racers a chance to experience the famed strip in the Appalachians.
The sport of NHRA drag racing’s next generation of drivers (ranging in age from six to 17) will take to the strip July 19-21 at the NHRA Jr. Drag Racing Eastern Conference Finals. The Tri-Cities will welcome more than 500 young racers and their families during this event. Bristol Dragway has played host to the Eastern Conference Finals since 2004.
The two other prestigious bracket races hosted at Bristol Dragway are the World Footbrake Challenge, July 5-8 and the Fall Fling, which will be held Sept. 19-22. The World Footbrake Challenge features the best footbrake racers in the world gunning for one of the largest payouts in bracket racing while the Fall Fling brings the nation’s best Super Pro racers for a good ole-fashioned drag race in east Tennessee.
For more information on events at Bristol Dragway and to purchase tickets, please visit BristolDragway.com or call 423-BRISTOL.
2018 Bristol Dragway Schedule
April 20-22 DER Bracket Racing Series
April 28 Street Fights #1
May 4-5 Fitzgerald Truck Show
May 12 Street Fights #2
May 25-27 DER Bracket Racing Series
June 1-3 DER Bracket Racing Series
June 15-17 NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals
June 22-24 DER Bracket Racing Series
June 30 Street Fights #3
July 5-8 World Footbrake Challenge
July 13-14 Huddleston Performance Jr. Drag Racing Nationals presented by Mike Bos Chassis Craft
July 14 Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Monster Truck Madness
July 19-21 NHRA Jr. Drags Eastern Conference Finals
July 27-29 DER Bracket Racing Series
Aug. 4 Street Fights #4
Sept. 8 Street Fights #5
Sept. 14-16 DER Bracket Racing Series
Sept. 19-22 Fall Fling
Sept. 28-30 Bristol Chevy Show
Sept. 29 Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Thunder Valley Mayhem
Bristol Motor Speedway/Dragway PR