Drag Racing

  • 400 Thunder Series unveiled as future of Australian Drag Racing

    A new era of drag racing has begun with the unveiling of the new 400 Thunder Australian Professional Drag Racing Series in Sydney.
     
    Following the recent announcement of a new professional series, the exciting new 400 Thunder branding was revealed, along with it a revolutionary FOX Sports TV package, and a prize pool of almost $750,000.
     
    400 Thunder spokesperson Tony Wedlock said it is a milestone day for Australian drag racing, and the new branding reflects the sensory experience of the sport. 
     
    “We’re thrilled to unveil the 400 Thunder brand. This marks the start of a new age in Australian drag racing, and just like our competitors on the start line, we are only looking forward from here,” Wedlock said.
     
    “400 Thunder is the ideal branding as it not only tells the distance we race over, but describes the noise and sensation our fantastic sport creates.
     
    “The sound and feeling of a Top Fuel dragster, and all the internationally-recognised headline categories, really is like a crack of thunder and I know competitors and fans will throw their support behind the brand.”
     
    The entire 400 Thunder Australian Professional Drag Racing Series will be shown in prime time slots on FOX Sports.

    400 Thunder coverage will feature in a weekly prime-time slot, with 30-minute highlight packages for each bracket per round – accounting for a staggering 37-episode schedule.
     
    Long-standing sports production house Castle Media will produce the 400 Thunder show, with six-time Best Sporting Broadcast Logie winner Murray Lomax as Executive Producer.
     
    Castle Media has produced some of the biggest sporting events in Australia and internationally, including: Nutrigrain Ironman Series, Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, Melbourne Cup Carnival, Australian PGA Tour, 2006 Commonwealth Games and the Australian Open Tennis.
     
    Lomax’s background includes serving as the executive producer for the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix and 15 years as V8 Supercars’ executive producer.
     
    Series spokesman Tony Wedlock said the appointment of Castle Media and the FOX Sports agreement is a coup for the series.
     
    “Drag racing is the most exciting form of motorsport there is, and Foxtel and Castle Media will showcase our great series they way it deserves to be shown,” Wedlock said.
     
    “Castle Media brings years of global sports coverage, and executive producer Murray Lomax knows how to portray the excitement of the categories on the small screen.”
     
    FOX Sports Acquisitions and integration manager, Adam Howarth, said 400 Thunder is a great addition to the networks’ line up, will benefit the sport and be beneficial to both parties.
     
    “Fox Sports is very excited about assisting with the re-launch of Australian Drag Racing. We are always on the look out for exciting sports content and drag racing certainly fits that bill,” Howarth said.
     
    “The huge interest in drag racing could lead to more subscribers for Foxtel, and that's valuable to us. We look forward to bringing the coverage to life.”
     
    Competitors will vie for almost $750,000 in prize money over the 10-event calendar, which sees them travel to three states and race at world class venues.
     
    Wedlock said the future is bright for the professional ranks under the new 400 Thunder brand.
     
    “We have a huge season in store the 400 Thunder series, and I speak for everyone when I say we can’t wait to kick it off with the East Coast Nationals at Sydney Dragway next month,” he said.

  • Brett Stevens sentenced to 13 years’ jail

    Disgraced AUSTRALIAN drag racing legend Brett Stevens has been sentenced to 13 years’ jail for producing and trafficking ecstasy.

    The 50-year-old was earlier this year found guilty on both charges following a six-week trial in which jurors heard the racing veteran masterminded an operation worth up to $1.2 million that produced about 100,000 pills a week.

    Stevens, who has three national drag racing titles to his name, was today sentenced to 13 years in prison in the Supreme Court in Brisbane.

     

    Full story can be found here

  • Former drag racing champion Brett Stevens..... Guilty

    Australian drag racing legend Brett Stevens is facing a lengthy jail term after he was convicted of producing and trafficking ecstasy.

    The 50-year-old was found guilty of both offences in the Brisbane Supreme Court on Wednesday after a six-week trial.

    The jury heard that between 2007 and 2009, the veteran racer masterminded a $1.2 million operation that produced up to 100,000 pills per week.

    He met a key associate at Queensland's Willowbank Raceway.

    Stevens, who won three national drag racing titles, was the operation's "puppet master" who deliberately distanced himself from the drug network in a bid to keep his hands clean, the crown said.

    He and associates were recorded discussing drugs in code.

    Detectives collected 800 recorded interactions during a multi-agency operation over almost two years.

    They identified $1.2 million in income that couldn't be attributed to any source, and arrested Stevens in February 2009.

    He pleaded not guilty to trafficking, producing and supplying dangerous drugs at the start of his trial in July.

    The jury retired on Monday and took two days to find Stevens guilty of trafficking and producing, and not guilty of supplying.

    Stevens' bail was revoked and he is due to be sentenced on November 20.

  • Perth Motorplex To Remain Open

    Facility owner, VenuesWest will take over interim management of Perth Motorplex from 1 July 2016 following the decision of the current operator, Kwinana Motorplex Pty Ltd to withdraw from management of the venue.

    Kwinana Motorplex Pty Ltd had tendered last year to continue it association of the motorsport venue which it won.  For the last 10 months, both parties negotiated a new contract.

    At the 11th hour and without notice, Kwinana Motorplex Pty Ltd notified VenuesWest that it was not going to sign the new agreement and was in fact pulling out completely.

    VenuesWest has owned the venue on behalf of the State Government since 2000 and has a long history of venue management across other well-known Perth sport and entertainment venues such as HBF Stadium, HBF Arena, Midvale SpeedDome, WA Athletics Stadium, Bendat Basketball Centre and nib Stadium.

    VenuesWest CEO, David Etherton said that a VenuesWest management solution provided the best short term solution available to ensure the continued success and viability of Perth Motorplex.

    “VenuesWest will take over management of Perth Motorplex from 1 July 2016 for a period of up to two years, allowing the Perth motorsports community to continue to compete in and enjoy their racing.” Mr Etherton said.

    “When the venue reopens, following the usual winter closure, I have every confidence, that with the assistance of the motorsport community, we will deliver a safe and operational venue.”

    VenuesWest will immediately seek to engage a long term management solution by way of open-market tender.

    Mr Etherton went on to explain, “This is a great venue and we want the best possible operator to run the venue, so a competitive process will be run. The negotiation of any major long term contract takes time and is a detailed process, hence the interim management period by VenuesWest.”

    Perth Motorplex receives around 235,000 visitors annually to compete in 80 regular drag racing and speedway events and to experience several major entertainment events throughout the year.

    Over the coming weeks VenuesWest will actively engage with existing staff, relevant stakeholders, sanctioning bodies and venue suppliers to ensure that Perth Motorplex continues to be at the forefront of racing.