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Sat, 29 Dec 2001, 10:46 AM

Second annual Spring Open presented by LIZZARD Racing
Courtesy of Harley Communications Public Relations

Returns as official pre-season test event of the IHRA

DINWIDDIE, Va. -- For the second year in a row, the IHRA will offer their version of the "Daytona Speedweeks" at the Spring Open presented by LIZZARD Racing Engines, hosted by Virginia Motorsports Park in Dinwiddie, Va. This event, slated for the weekend of March 7 - 10, 2002, will offer the opportunity for everything from Screamin' Eagle Nitro Harley-Davidsons to Funny Cars to Pro Modifieds to Pro Stocks the opportunity to test in a controlled environment at one of the finest racing facilities in the country.

Brian Pierce, manager of VMP, is excited about the event returning to his track.

"We really enjoyed the event last year," explained Pierce. "It served as an excellent way for the racers and our staff to get back into the groove and prepare for the season. We hope that the 2002 event will be even larger."

The event is not limited to the aforementioned classes, as sportsman racers are encouraged to take part in the event as well. A special gamblers race is planned for one of the four days as is a junior dragster shootout similar to the one presented in the 2001 event. editor Bobby Bennett is proud to be associated with the event for the second year.

"We had a ball last year," explained Bennett. "We have had extensive meetings to improve on last year's event and I am confident that we are headed in the right direction. I am very pleased to be associated with the PREMIERE test event on the IHRA tour."

Joining the program as well will be Matt Grillo's LIZZARD Racing Engines, most recently the sponsor of the IHRA's Top Sportsman Quick Eight program. Grillo explained that if was to be associated with it that he was sure to be involved as well.

"I have to agree that last season's event was a blast," explained Grillo. "We had a lot of cars there and the fans were very much in tune to the cars that were on the track. I look forward to being associated with this event."

This unique event will feature everything from Screamin' Eagle Nitro Harley-Davidsons to the high-speed Pro Modifieds to various sportsman entries in test mode. There will be a special Chicago style eliminations program on Saturday in the professional divisions in exchange for the test time.

The event will provide professional drivers the opportunity to test for the upcoming season during that weekend, provided that they participate in a special "Chicago Style" eliminations program on Saturday. Pre-entry is encouraged for the professionals as it not only assists the VMP crew with determining parking space as well as publicity for the event. If you have a sponsor, this would be a great way to garner publicity for them. Professional teams that pre-enter will be given free entry for three crewmen.

Sportsman drivers that wish to test and tune during the event can receive a cost break by pre-entering. The standard fee for the Spring Open will be $75 at the gate for the entire weekend and $25 per day if a driver does not wish the entire program. However, if they pre-enter, the fee drops to $65 for the entire event.

Checks or money orders must be made payable to Virginia Motorsports Park. They may be sent to the following address:

Virginia Motorsports Park
P.O. Box 600
Dinwiddie, Va. 23841

Deadline for pre-entry is March 1, 2002

A special e-mail address has been set up for those that wish to pre-enter online. Online pre-entries can be e-mailed to

The following information must be included with each pre-entry.
Car Number:
Driver Name:
Team Owner Name:
City, State & Zip
Phone Number You Can Be Best Reached At:
Car Make:
Sponsor (if applicable):
Days you plan on attending - NOTE - If you plan on attending the complete
event, please list - COMPLETE EVENT

For more information on the event, stay tuned to, or drag racing's leading e-zine at As more news becomes available, it will be posted on these websites.

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