3 Days, 3 Tracks, 342 Miles: Summit Racing’s Midwest Drags

A few weeks ago, we sat down with J.Heid. You might know him from his work with the F-Body Nationals. As it were, Heid and his organization, ProQ Motorsports, have recently partnered with Summit Racing Equipment to put on one of the coolest event’s we’ve heard of in some time – the Summit Midwest Drags. A three-day, drag-and-drive event finishing just as the annual Super Summit Show kicks off. That means attendees can enjoy two events for the price of one!

The three-day drag race party kicks off Wednesday June 5, at Wagler Motorsports Park in Green County, Indiana. The second leg of the trip will take participants to Muncie Dragway, in Albany, Indiana. Those of you in the know will note the first two race days will consist of eighth-mile drags. Now, before you go getting your undergarments all bunched-up, the show culminates with some serious quarter-mile drag racing at Summit Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio.

While the drag-and-drive format isn’t anything new, the Midwest Drags promises to be much different than the events we’re all used to hearing about. Think “Drag Week for the rest of us.” Heid told us, their event is similar in format, but varies wildly in execution. For the sake of accessibility, Heid explained, “this is three days of racing, fielding 12 classes. Instead of focusing on things like NA vs. Power Adder, we have chosen to cater to the people who have thus-far been neglected.

“It’s great because we don’t have to regulate so much because of the classes we are offering,” he said. For example, if you take a look at the Midwest Drags rules page, you’ll notice it is relatively sparse, compared to say….the 15 pages of rules which Drag Week employs. Instead of gratuitous regulations, the Midwest Drags will rely heavily on strategy to ensure competitiveness in the field.

The Summit Midwest Drags is a street/strip event that includes drag racing at three midwest dragstrips over three days. All registered vehicles must be driven on public roads between each event, making an interesting display of power-vs-reliability. With over a dozen racing classes, there is a variety of vehicles and horsepower. All vehicles must comply with NHRA and/or IHRA rules.

At each track racers will have to turn in two time slips. To win the class racers have to have the lowest ET and fastest MPH. Class winners will win a $1,500 purse, with a total of $18,000 up for grabs across the 12 different classes.

Classes

1)  Manual Shift H – Leg-released and Clutch-Assisted – Four or Five Speed OEM H, non-modified T56 pattern, non-aftermarket gear box except AutoGear, SuperCase, or Syracuse allowed. Factory VIN car, any motor or chassis combos.

2)  Manual Shift Unlimited – Leg-released leave.  GForce, Lenco, Jerico, Liberty, RolTech, Top Loader – Unlimited and/or clutchless shifting.

– Diesels are not required to run diesel classes.  We encourage Diesel vs. Gas.

3)  Street Diesel  – Stock-style suspension (no back-half, no tube chassis, no coil-over conversions) on DOT-approved street tire including drag radial (no slicks).  Must have lights, cooling system, charging system, and horn.  No fiberglass body or lexan other than back window for trucks with cages.

4) Unlimited Diesel – Cooling and charging system.

5) Unlimited – Methanol with dzus front clips… this is you. Registered and insured, legal to be driven in the lower 48 states, and it has four wheels and tires (one per corner), we want to see it. We love Canada too!

6) Super Street Hard Tire 2WD – non-slicks or drag radial traditional treaded hard tire. Factory rear suspension. (Adam will line you up out of the groove.)

7) Super Street No Forced Induction  – Carb or Injection only. Factory “mounted / bolt location” suspension or Ladder bar okay. (No Turbo, Supercharger, Nitrous).  Ideal for automatics, manual trans look at #1 or #2.

8) Super Street 275 Radial / Slick – 275 or equivalent size.  No rear sub-frame or chassis cars. No Ladder bar or 4-link, must retain FACTORY frame rails or sub-frame allowed.

9) Super Street 295 / 315 Radial or Slick – 295/315 or equivalent size.  No rear sub-frame or chassis cars. Yes to Ladder bar, 4-link must retain FACTORY frame rails or sub-frame allowed.

10)  Gassers – Straight axle, leaf spring only.  NO other front-end suspensions. Carbureted or Blower accepted.

11) Daily Driver  – Factory suspension location mounting, no rear suspension bolt-ons. Any tire to fit in all factory steel – factory wheel-wells, no cage or roll bar, 11.5 index. Must have any hood.

12) Modern Muscle CMC – 2010 or newer production VIN (any body style)… Camaro, Mustang, Challengers, Audi… etc. Steel except hood and deck, corvettes welcome. Tire max, 315 radial or 29-inch slicks.

“The reason we’ve done it this way is because we are trying to prevent the big cars from Drag Week coming out and putting it on cruise control, and running away with the show. We want the Midwest Drags to be more competitive. Because of that, we don’t have to worry about irrelevant things like a rear-view mirror, or a horn that works.”

“All this came about because of my personal build. It’s a ’55 chevy, 468 with iron 049 heads, and I was having trouble finding manual transmission races because I was going against Z-gate shifters. That’s why we came up with the H-Pattern Shifter class, and leg-leave races – you know, the original Hurst Shifter with reverse lockout, that was the one to have in the ’60s.”

Speaking of parts from the era, Heid got us really excited about his personal project. He sent over these photos to peruse, and we gotta say we can’t wait to see this thing run!

So, hurry if you want to run against Heid, or any of the other participants. Registration is limited to 300 participants, but Heid told us if there is more demand they will do their best to accommodate. They don’t want to turn their backs on a fellow drag racer. Check out Summit’s Midwest Drags registration page, here. 

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About the author

Vinny Costa

Fast cars, motorcycles, and loud music are what get Vinny’s blood pumping. Catch him behind the wheel of his ’68 Firebird. Chances are, Black Sabbath will be playing in the background.
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