Since it was founded by Wally Parks in 1951, NHRA has been dedicated to safety while providing millions of racing fans with the fastest and most spectacular form of entertainment on wheels. Parks initially started NHRA as a means of getting hot-rodders off the streets and onto legal drag strips. Since those early days, NHRA has evolved into the largest promoter of professional drag racing in the world.
Keeping with Parks’ original philosophy, the NHRA will continue to guide the sport, assuring that safety and technological improvements remain a top priority. Progressive changes will help the NHRA continue to fulfill its leadership role in the motorsports world well into the future.
While the grassroots racing organization has come a long way in its 70-plus years of operation, some things will never change. It’s easy to see why racers and fans are so committed to NHRA Championship Drag Racing.
In 1947, Parks, a military tank test-driver for General Motors who served in the army in the South Pacific in World War II, helped organize the Southern California Timing Association and later became its general manager.
The first SCTA "Speed Week," held at the famed Bonneville Salt Flats in 1949, was the result of a diligent effort of Parks, then its executive secretary. It was here that racers first began running "against the clock" - actually, a stopwatch - coaxing their vehicles to accelerate quicker rather than simply to attain high top speeds.
The first dragstrip, the Santa Ana Drags, began running on an airfield in Southern California in 1950 and quickly gained popularity among the Muroc crowd because of its revolutionary computerized speed clocks.
When Parks became editor of the monthly enthusiast magazine Hot Rod, he had the forum and the power to form the National Hot Rod Association in 1951 to "create order from chaos" by instituting safety rules and performance standards that helped legitimize the sport. He was its first president.
NHRA held its first official race in April 1953 on a slice of the Los Angeles County Fairgrounds parking lot in Pomona, Calif. Four decades later, that track has undergone a $6-million expansion and renovation and hosts the NHRA season-opening Circle K NHRA Winternationals and the season finale, the Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals.
In 1955, NHRA staged its first national event, called simply "the Nationals" in Great Bend, Kan. Six years later, as the Nationals hopscotched around the country to showcase the growing sport before settling in Indianapolis in 1961, the Winternationals became NHRA's second event.
The aggressive upgrading of facilities to stadium quality, with fan amenities, VIP towers, and tall grandstands, was the passion of NHRA President Dallas Gardner, who took the reins in 1984 when Parks became board chairman.
With 50,000 members and more than 35,000 licensed competitors, NHRA is a thriving leader in the world of motorsports. Parks, who died in 2007 at the age of 94, initially started NHRA as a means of getting hot rodders off the streets and on to legal drag strips. Since those early days, NHRA has evolved into the largest promoter of professional drag racing in the world. Today, with more than 200 dedicated employees, NHRA offers drag racing opportunities for hot rod enthusiasts of all levels, from youth ages 5 to 17 in the NHRA Summit Racing Jr. Drag Racing League all the way up to the top of the professional ranks with the NHRACamping World Drag Racing Series.
While Top Fuel dragsters routinely cover the race distance at more than 330 mph, NHRA is moving just as fast in popularity with auto racing fans. Second only to NASCAR in terms of attendance, fan appeal, television ratings and sponsorship commitment among the major motorsports organizations, NHRA is moving quickly into mainstream America.
There are 120 member tracks across North America that host NHRA competitions each week in NHRA's seven geographic regions. In addition to the marquee Camping World Series, which crisscrosses the U.S., making 24 stops in 21 cities in 10 months, NHRA offers popular weekly grassroots programs at many of its member tracks. One of the most popular is the NHRA Drags: Street Legal Style, which offers anyone with a car, driver's license, helmet, and auto insurance the opportunity to compete in grudge-match style drag racing. Serious weekend warriors can compete each weekend at their local track in the NHRA Summit Racing Series, which crowns national champions each season. The NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series provides a developmental series for those who are interested in a career as a touring pro. And the NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series features some of the nation's wildest doorslammer race cars covering the drag strip at speeds approaching 250 mph.
“Fast Paced.” It’s the label every employer uses to describe its environment. But at the NHRA, that pace is more than 300 miles per hour. It’s a pace sustained by the people who make this association speed along and requires new talent, new ideas, and new commitment to bring SPEED FOR ALL to our racers, members, tracks and fans. We look forward to you joining our team!
— President Glen Cromwell
The NHRA Youth & Education Services (YES) Program was founded in 1989. It is the only full-time education program in motorsports that provides quality programs and activities for schools and youth organizations nationwide. Not only is the YES Program FREE, it focuses on the importance of goals and continued education, while allowing students to learn about and explore various career opportunities. The program will show students how S.T.E.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) is applied to both, real world situations and NHRA Drag Racing, which they will have the opportunity to see live at the track!
NHRA Launch — Motorsports Careers' mission is to provide career opportunities to those with a passion for motorsports. Formed through a collaboration between the Vance Family Foundation and the National Hot Rod Association, NHRA Launch — Motorsports Careers will facilitate connections between passionate individuals and companies within the motorsports industry for FREE.
Working closely with NHRA to develop the program behind the scenes over the past year, Pro Stock Motorcycle legend Terry Vance envisions NHRA Launch — Motorsports Careers as the starting point for the next generation of motorsports and automotive professionals. "Look at Robert Hight [Funny Car champion] and Mike Neff [Funny Car crew chief] and all the guys that have come through the sport that had to know somebody in order to make it happen. If you don't know anybody, you're kind of out. I know what that feels like, and it is a lousy place to be. I want NHRA Launch — Motorsports Careers to help kids not feel that way."
The Vance Family Foundation's $1 million contribution fully funds the program through its startup and rollout, which provides NHRA's dedicated staff the resources necessary to facilitate connections between job seekers and employers within the industry.
Twelve (12) Company-paid holidays including: New Year's Day, Memorial Day, Juneteenth, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving and the day after Thanksgiving, and Christmas Day.
The Company has a Sick Leave policy that grants ten (10) sick days per year.
Vacation is accrued in accordance with the following schedule:
Group insurance includes medical and prescription drugs, dental and vision. The Company pays 100% of the employee's premium for dental and vision and shares in the cost for dependent coverage. Employees contribute a minimum of $114.00 for single coverage. Coverage begins on the 1st of the month following one month of continuous employment.
The Company pays for basic term life insurance amounting to $50,000 for the employee (lower amounts will apply at age 65), $2,000 for a spouse (coverage ceases at age 70), and $1,000 for child(ren), if applicable. Up to $500,000 voluntary supplemental life insurance is also available to the employee and spouse paid for by the employee.
The Company provides this benefit to you at no charge. Short Term Disability (STD) is effective after thirty (30) days of an authorized disability claim. It covers nine (9) weeks salary continuation at 60% of monthly earnings or maximum limits, less any allowable state plan payments.
The Company provides this benefit to you at no charge. Long Term Disability (LTD) is effective after ninety days of an authorized disability claim. Salary continuation amount is at 60% of monthly earnings or maximum limits.
All full time and part time employees can elect to participate in this benefit which is 100% employee paid. The benefit provides for a cash payment should you lose two or more activities of daily living. More information will be provided to you at the time of hire.
The new employee is eligible to enter the Plan on January 1, April 1, July 1 or Oct. 1 following six (6) months of continuous employment. The Company matches 100% of employee deferrals up to 4%. Total annual deferrals for 2023 cannot exceed 60% of your annual salary or $22,500. These limits are set annually by the IRS.
We recognize that from time to time you may experience personal problems that can affect job performance and the quality of life. In response to this, we have adopted an employee benefit called the EAP (Employee Assistance Program).
The EAP is designed to provide confidential, profession assessment and referral assistance to you and members of your family who are experiencing personal problems such as marital and family conflicts, alcohol or substance abuse, financial difficulties, legal problems, or behavioral/emotional problems. Counselors will help assess problems and recommend action plans to address them. This benefit is of no charge to the employee for the initial assessment and referral and is available 24 hours a day. Contact the Benefits or Human Resources departments to obtain the latest information on our Employee Assistance Program.