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Sat, 19 Dec 2015, 09:03 AM

NHRA Kansas Nationals at Heartland Park Topeka added to 2016 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Schedule
Courtesy of NHRA Communications

GLENDORA, Calif. --

NHRA officials today announced that the 330-mph speed and excitement of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series will return to Kansas' capital city in 2016.

NHRA officials were able to reach an agreement quickly with Heartland Park Topeka's new ownership group, Heartland Park Topeka, LLC, led by Chris Payne and Todd Crossley.

The 28th annual NHRA Kansas Nationals will be contested May 20-22 at Heartland Park Topeka, one of the quickest and fastest drag strips in the world. The event, which will be televised live on Fox Sports 1 (FS1), will be race No. eight in the regular season, bringing the season total of events for the NHRA Mello Yello Series to 24.

"Heartland Park Topeka has such a great history with NHRA as the site of many performance milestones and record-setting achievements. We are looking forward to continuing that legacy with today's announcement," said Peter Clifford, NHRA president. "The fans in the Topeka and Kansas City area are some of the most passionate in the country and we are excited for them to be able to continue to enjoy the NHRA Mello Yello Series. And for NHRA Sportsman racers, the track is one of the busiest in that region, and it will continue to offer many racing opportunities for those hot rodding enthusiasts."

Said Payne: "We're honored and excited to work with NHRA and ensure drag racing will once again thrive in Topeka for years to come. We're grateful to be a part of such a great community who loves all forms of racing and look forward to revitalizing one of Topeka's greatest assets."

In addition to back-to-back divisional events in the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series in late July, NHRA will offer a full menu of sportsman racing action at Heartland Park Topeka, including the NHRA Summit Racing Series, NHRA Summit Racing Jr. Drag Racing League, NHRA Jr. Street and the NHRA Drags: Street Legal Style presented by AAA.

"We thank new owner Chris Payne for his commitment to NHRA drag racing," Clifford added. "His love for the sport and commitment to the Heartland Park facility should be a big win for the Topeka community and for all of our racers."

The full 2016 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series schedule is below.

2016 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Schedule

NHRA Mello Yello Series Regular Season
Feb. 11-14      Circle K NHRA Winternationals                           Pomona, Calif.
Feb. 26-28      CARQUEST Auto Parts NHRA Nationals                      Phoenix
March 17-20     Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals (PSM)              Gainesville, Fla.
April 1-3       NHRA Nationals                                          Las Vegas
April 22-24     NHRA Four-Wide Nationals (PSM)                          Charlotte, N.C.
April 29-May 1  NHRA SpringNationals                                    Houston
May 13-15       Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals (PSM)   Atlanta
May 20-22       NHRA Kansas Nationals                                   Topeka, Kan.
June 3-5        NHRA New England Nationals                              Epping, N.H.
June 9-12       Toyota NHRA Summernationals (PSM)                       Englishtown, N.J.
June 17-19      NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals                           Bristol, Tenn.
June 23-26      Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals (PSM)            Norwalk, Ohio
July 7-10       Route 66 NHRA Nationals (PSM)                           Chicago
July 22-24      Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals (PSM)                    Denver
July 29-31      NHRA Sonoma Nationals (PSM)                             Sonoma, Calif.
Aug. 5-7        NHRA Northwest Nationals                                Seattle
Aug. 18-21      Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals (PSM)                          Brainerd, Minn.
Aug. 31-Sept. 5 Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals (PSM)              Indianapolis

NHRA Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship
Sept. 16-18     NHRA Carolina Nationals (PSM)                           Charlotte, N.C.
Sept. 23-25     AAA Insurance NHRA Midwest Nationals (PSM)              St. Louis
Sept. 29-Oct. 2 NHRA Keystone Nationals (PSM)                           Reading, Pa.
Oct. 13-16      AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals (PSM)                      Dallas
Oct. 27-30      NHRA Toyota Nationals (PSM)                             Las Vegas
Nov. 10-13      Auto Club NHRA Finals (PSM)                             Pomona, Calif.   

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