GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

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Thread: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

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    GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    Pro Stock Team Owner Said Communication With GM Was Minimal Following Simmonds Departure …



    Ken Black congratulates fellow GM Pro Stock team owner Victor Cagnazzi following the 2007 NHRA U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis. Both Black and Cagnazzi received letters from GM discontinuing their respective programs. (NHRA.com photo)
    Ken Black received a Fed-Ex letter yesterday and the contents came as no surprise to the NHRA Full Throttle Pro Stock team owner.

    Inside was a notice from GM which stated they were officially cutting ties with his KB Racing, LLC as well as with Cagnazzi Racing, Cruz Pedregon and Kurt Johnson.

    Black’s team consists of former world champions Greg Anderson and Jason Line.

    “I knew it was coming, I was forewarned,” Black told CompetitionPlus.com on Wednesday. “That’s why they [GM] filed bankruptcy … to get rid of all of this stuff.”

    The stuff Black refers to is the monetary funding his teams received as well as support vehicles and free parts.

    “The biggest thing we are going to lose now are our support vehicles … we get four of them a year,” Black explained. “We’ll be turning those in as soon as they advise us to.”

    Black said there’s a strong likelihood that GM will allow him to purchase the returned vehicles, a practice he said is new to him and if the price is right, he’ll consider the option.

    Black admitted the relationship between his team and GM had deteriorated to a trickle of communication since the departure of Drag Racing Marketing Manager Fred Simmonds last October.

    “Fred was our direct link and when he left that was pretty much the end,” Black said.

    Black further stated that if he chooses a different manufacturer his options are limited to Ford because as he sees it, “Chrysler is in the same boat with GM with the bankruptcy.” He did confirm that his KB Racing team had discussed a Toyota program with representatives of the company but that was several years ago.

    “We’ll have the parts and pieces to finish the year and beyond,” Black said. “Getting parts shouldn’t be a problem because we are told they will still make those. We’ll just have to pay for them.”

    KB Racing runs the DRCE3 combination along with Kurt and Warren Johnson. Others running the DRCE2 combination could be in trouble for the future as the production of that line is in question.

    For Black, losing support from GM is a double whammy. Ever dime saved via their support is now a dime that must be spent to remain at a competitive level. And, GM isn't the only sponsor cutting back. Black, by accident, discovered K&N Filters is not longer paying out a No. 1 qualifier bonus. A story CompetitionPlus.com is working as you read this.

    http://www.competitionplus.com/index...10830&Itemid=6


    I thought this was interesting, being a big NHRA fan. GM has completely stopped NHRA funding. It will be interesting to see how the void is filled next year. For anybody that's not a fan, Ken Black is kinda like the Rick Hendrick of drag racing.


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    Re: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    I really don't know if cutting NASCAR and NHRA funding is that bright of an idea, if GM loses anymore bowtie faithful to Ford they're in deep trouble coming out of bankruptcy.

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    Re: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    Yep. I was at the Summit Racing Nationals in Norwalk, OH last month and Ford had pretty much taken over the entire pit area. Along with Harley Davidson and the US Army.

    I didn't see one Camaro. Only a few Corvettes. But Ford had every model of Mustang available on display to sit in. Even the new GT 500 and factory Super Stocker with roll cage and super charger. GMPP did have a running version of its 572 big block. Very badass. But yes, Ford will fill the vaccum left by GM. Probably Toyota as well.
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    Re: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    My parents were at Norwalk last month as well. I was there in 2007 for the first National event they hosted.

    I'm saddened but not surprised. I figured it was only a matter of time until the red ink and bankruptcy stuff at GM and Chrysler would affect the racing operations of NHRA and NASCAR. This pull back is going to hit the NHRA hard.

    If Toyota or Hyundai were to step up and try and fill the void, I bet you'll find a lot of people will be like my parents and their friends - they'll stop paying attention and going to these events. You'll never see them supporting a Toyota or any other foreign car team. Its that kind of demographic.
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    Re: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    This is just the cherry on top for the NHRA. They've been scaring away sponsorship left and right recently. By signing exclusive agreements with certain companies they put off others. Monster Energy for example. And Budweiser (InBev) is pulling all of its sponsorship after 30 years w/ Berstein.

    It pains me to see my favorite drive, Larry Dixon, with a Toyota sticker on his rail and a major sponsor of the country of Dubai.
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    Re: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    Does this mean GM is done w/ Pro Stock?

    Ugh. This was the only NHRA class they should've stuck with. Booooo. Stupid move. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.

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    Re: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    Once GM recovers (and that means by sales to pay back the loans), I am sure they will be sponsoring again. They are just not able to do it right now.

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    Re: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    Quote Originally Posted by 2648562 View Post
    Does this mean GM is done w/ Pro Stock?

    Ugh. This was the only NHRA class they should've stuck with. Booooo. Stupid move. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.
    They are done. That doesn't mean you won't see Cobalt and G6 bodies running. Those cars are paid for and proven winners. What I think you will see, especially in the case of KB Racing, is the top players running Mustang bodies and Ford engines.

    Greg Anderson, Jason Line, maybe even Jeg Coughlin will probably shift to Ford. And Warren and Kurt Johnson.
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    Re: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    Quote Originally Posted by ZR2BlaZeR2 View Post
    They are done. That doesn't mean you won't see Cobalt and G6 bodies running. Those cars are paid for and proven winners. What I think you will see, especially in the case of KB Racing, is the top players running Mustang bodies and Ford engines.

    Greg Anderson, Jason Line, maybe even Jeg Coughlin will probably shift to Ford. And Warren and Kurt Johnson.
    To see the Johnsons running Fords would be just another kick in the stomach....hell, we're already down...
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    Re: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    They should stick with this stuff and get out of NASCAR. There's better bang-for-buck in NHRA.
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    Re: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    I have to agree GM should not be spending money on this, they should have not renewed the contract last yr, I'm assuming is on a yearly basis. Once they are proffitable and have paid back all the loans , then they can get back in.
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    Re: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    How much money did it really cost? i mean your making the parts anyway, just giving them free stuff, and giving them vehicles...big deal, those are seen by everybody, not like they have a huge inventory sitting on lots across America. I find it hard to believe that they are "loosing" money on this investment. Maybe they could have just cut back like they did in nascar? Pedregon was the only Chevy left in top fuel, I guess he'll be a toyota like his brother. I feel bad for this sport, because they are going to have a lot of fans turning the channel.

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    Re: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    Quote Originally Posted by 1G6 View Post
    They should stick with this stuff and get out of NASCAR. There's better bang-for-buck in NHRA.
    Potentially yes... but NASCAR still gets your brand in front of a lot more eyeballs... I think I can find maybe 2-3 hours of NHRA coverage a week, I can get a minimum of 2-3 hours of NASCAR + brands pre race coverage alone on race day.

    Now maybe it would be better if GM actually sponsored some cars so not only were they the car but the sponsor as well it might be even better.
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    Re: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    I have to agree that the bang for the buck factor in other than NASCAR or IRL type racing is potentially higher. NHRA, SCCA seem like good places to put up minimal amounts of cash compared to blowing the wad on NASCAR generic COT fakery.
    Last edited by Ming; 07-10-2009 at 07:47 PM.

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    Thumbs down Re: GM Halts funding for NHRA teams

    Sad to see them pull out of NHRA however i would love to see them pull out of nascar they suck.
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