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The BIR Shirt Shack is now online!

Just in time for the holidays, the BIR Shirt Shack is now online, giving fans the opportunity to buy their favorite race fan BIR apparel and merchandise. Visit the site today and start shopping!

Gift certificates are available as well. They make great stocking stuffers. The two types are:

BIR Gift Certificates – You can buy them for any value. They’re good for admission to any BIR event (including the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals) as well as apparel and merchandise. Gift Certificates can only be purchased at the BIR Ticket Office or by phone: 1-866-444-4455.

BIR Performance Driving School Gift Cards – The BIR Performance Driving School has Gift Cards that can be used for any school date. Values start at $25 and they can be purchased online by clicking here.

Happy holidays from BIR!

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New ticketing structure in place for 2018 NHRA Nationals

Brainerd International Raceway has made a major ticketing change for the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals that will make it easier to buy tickets and improve the admission process by moving fans into the track and into their seats quicker and more efficiently.

Starting in 2018, all admission tickets for the NHRA Nationals will include a reserved seat in the grandstand. In previous years, fans were required to buy an admission ticket and then buy a reserved seat. Combining the two will make the purchasing process easier and will eliminate the need for fans to wait in line inside the track to pay for a grandstand seat if they were unaware that an admission ticket got them into the track but not into the grandstands.

Kids 12 and younger will still be admitted in free if they’re accompanied by a paying adult. Their free admission includes a reserved seat. Camping passes for kids need to be purchased.

“Fans will really like this change because it will really improve how we move fans through the front gate and into the grandstands,” BIR owner Jed Copham said. “We’re constantly trying to improve the experience for our fans, and eliminating lines is the first thing that we address. This change should eliminate most of the long lines and make it easier to buy tickets.”

Advance tickets for the 2018 Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals go on sale Dec. 4. Click here for ticket prices and changes to the grandstanding seating. Fans will be able to keep the seats that they’ve had in the past. Letters were mailed on Dec. 1 to fans with instructions on how to reserve their grandstand seats for this year’s NHRA Nationals.

Scheduled for Aug. 16-19, the NHRA Nationals is the single largest annual sporting event in Minnesota. The best drag racers in the world descend on BIR with dragsters that crank out 10,000 horsepower and fly down the track at 330 mph. All fans have access to the pits, and the event’s midway has a carnival-like atmosphere that features interactive displays, merchandise, sampling and more.

This will be the third year that BIR has a Megaweek ticket for Nationals. Thunder at the Lakes, which is BIR’s annual NHRA West Central Division drag race, is scheduled for the weekend before Nationals. Most of the Sportsman drag racers competing at Thunder at the Lakes return the following weekend to compete at Nationals. BIR is open the entire week, where fans can be on track for 12 straight days, from Aug. 9-20.

 

Win a new race car while helping cancer patients

Here’s your chance to help cancer patients by buying a $100 raffle ticket to win a 2018 Global Mazda MX-5 Cup Car from Long Road Racing!

Lemons of Love is a non-profit organization that delivers hand-crafted goodie bags to cancer patients to make their day a little brighter. This is the fourth year of the program. All proceeds from the raffle goes to Lemons of Love. A maximum of 2,500 tickets will be sold.

The drawing for the $59,000 race car will be during the 12 Hours of Sebring race on March 17. Lemons of Love is also giving the winning ticket holder a F.A.S.T. driver cooling system, one season’s supply of Pagid Brakes, PRO Series Model Bell Helmet, G-Force 745 Driver’s Suit, Battery Tender charger and more.

Don’t delay, buy your tickets today.

Click here to visit the official website where you can buy your raffle tickets. Or to learn more about Lemons of Love, click here.

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BIR announces 2017 Bracket Series champs!

Whether you call it beginner’s luck, pure skill or anything in between, Shawn Carlson’s drag racing season was incredible, and one he’ll never forget.

Carlson and 11 other racers in Brainerd International Raceway’s Bracket Drag Racing Series were named 2017 Series Champions. They’ll be honored Feb. 24 at BIR’s annual Racer Banquet.

Shawn Carlson, Sportsman

Shawn Carlson, Sportsman

Brian Johnson, Super Pro

Brian Johnson, Super Pro

Reno Loeffelholz, Pro ET

Reno Loeffelholz, Pro ET

Carlson has raced at BIR for many years but this was his first season competing in the Bracket Drag Racing Series for points and a shot at a championship. He raced in the Pro ET and Sportsman classes, taking the points lead in the Sportsman class after the first weekend of racing. Five months later, he was still on top of the point standings, having earned the series title.

“It was kind of fun,” Carlson said, admitting that the pressure of being No. 1 continued to increase as the season went on. “More than once I would pull over on the return road to see who was winning and who was losing. I felt myself watching over my shoulder a lot.”

Driving a 1973 Plymouth Scamp, Carlson also won BIR’s King of the Track title in July, beating the top racers in the bracket series. It was a good year for Carlson.

“Racing in Pro ET is really tough and really prepares you for anything,” he said, shedding a little light on the secret to his success. Carlson finished 16th out of 60 drivers in the Pro ET class.

Glen Demenge, Stock/Super Stock

Glen Demenge, Stock/Super Stock

Jimmy Paulson, Pro Bike/Sled

Jimmy Paulson, Pro Bike/Sled

Devrin Walcheski, Comp Trophy

Devrin Walcheski, Comp Trophy

Carlson said he’s looking forward to next season, partly to defend his title but mainly to watch his twin 5-year-old boys compete in the Junior Dragster class for the first time. “I’ll really be wearing a smile on my face watching them go down that track,” he said.

Brian Johnson is wearing a smile as well, after repeating as Super Pro champ. It wasn’t easy, though. Johnson and Gary Loeffelholz were in a dogfight all season on the drag strip and in the point standings. Johnson grabbed the points lead after the third weekend and wouldn’t surrender it for the rest of the season. Loeffelholz was right on his heals in second place but couldn’t catch him.

Johnson and Loeffelholz have dominated the ultra-competitive Super Pro class, which typically attracts about 90 racers each weekend. The two racers have combined to win the class title the last five years. Johnson won in 2013, 2016 and 2017 while Loeffelholz won in 2014 and 2015.

When Loeffelholz won the title in 2014, his son Reno won the Pro ET class. Reno found his way back to the top of the standings this year again, winning his second Pro ET championship.

Todd Anderson, Street Trophy

Todd Anderson, Street Trophy

Michael Freischel, Quick 16

Michael Freischel, Quick 16

Sydney Thompson, Jr. Drag Advance

Sydney Thompson, JD Advanced

Driving a 1968 Mustang, Reno took over first place after the fourth weekend and never looked back. Second-place finisher Joe Schmall couldn’t catch him.

Jimmy Paulson was another racer who returned to championship form this year. Paulson raced Super Comp for many years at BIR but decided to give Pro Bikes a try in 2015. His first year on two wheels went well as he dominated the class and took home the series championship. Last year was a different story.

“I struggled a lot with my reaction time last year,” Paulson said. ” I got that straightened out and then this year I was in the right place at the right time for the most part.

“Kayla (Filipiak) was on fire at the end after figuring out her bike, and Kyle (Lundberg) is always tough,” he said. “They kept the pressure on all season. They kept me sweating.” Filipiak took second and Lundberg third.

In Stock/Super Stock, Glen Demenge chased Ben Line all season in the point standings. Line grabbed the points lead after the first weekend and wouldn’t relinquish it until the final race, which Demenge won. That gave him just enough points to steal the championship from Line in dramatic fashion.

Dylan Dancer, JD Intermediate

Dylan Dancer, JD Intermediate

Daniel Dancer, JD Novice

Daniel Dancer, JD Novice

The winners of the two Trophy classes are collecting their first championships in those two classes. Devrin Walcheski won the Trophy Class and Todd Anderson won the Street Trophy class.

The Quick 16 class only had four races on last year’s schedule and one of them was rained out, so there was added pressure to win. Michael Freischel only needed two races to secure the top spot in the standings and a series championship. He was runner up once and he won the class once, giving him enough points to earn the title.

A drag racer who is not new to winning championships is Sydney Thompson. She repeated this year as champion of the Junior Dragster Advanced class for ages 13-18. She also won the series championship in 2013 when she was racing in the Junior Dragster Intermediate class for ages 10-12.

The Dancer brothers – Dylan and Daniel – were series champs in the Junior Dragster Intermediate and Junior Dragster Novice classes, respectively. Both were second-place finishers last year in those two classes.

Congratulations to all the winners!

Below are the top 3 finishers in each class.

Super Pro
1 – Brian Johnson
2 – Gary Loeffelholz
3 – Mike Campbell

Pro ET
1 – Reno Loeffelholz
2 – Joe Schmall
3 – Brandon Schmall

Sportsman
1 – Shawn Carlson
2 – Lee Dugdale
3 – Rory Emmans

Stock/Super Stock
1 – Glen DeMenge
2 -  Ben Line
3 – Brad Haugaard

Pro Bike/Sled
1 – Jimmy Paulson
2 – Kayla Filipiak
3 – Kyle Lundberg

Comp Trophy
1 – Devrin Walcheski
2 – Mike Larson
3 – Andrew Walcheski

Street Trophy
1 – Todd Anderson
2 – Heather Ingman
3 – Luke Schneider

Quick 16
1- Michael Freischel
2 – Henry Wiebusch
3 – Dan Narusiewicz

Jr. Dragster Advanced
1 – Sydney Thompson
2 – Jazper Wiebusch
3 – Samantha Cielinski

Jr. Dragster Intermediate
1 – Dylan Dancer
2 – Riley Luberda
3 – Megan Cielinski

Jr. Dragster Novice
1 – Daniel Dancer
2 – Brody Thompson
3 – Carter Luberda

 

 

 

Jed Copham to compete at Daytona’s Trans Am Series race

Brainerd International Raceway owner Jed Copham is hauling his Corvette to Daytona International Speedway in Florida to compete in the Trans Am Series’ final race of the year Nov. 11.

This will be the fifth Trans Am race that Jed has competed in. The first four were at BIR, including the one during last summer’s PleasureLand RV Show & Go. He races in the TA class, which consists of professional drivers and teams that complete all over the country. Jed finished fourth last summer, his best finish to date.

The field will be jammed packed with cars in Daytona. There are 55 cars registered for the race in all four classes. The schedule calls for all to be on the 3.5-mile, 12-turn track at the same time.

Join the BIR staff in wishing Jed good luck in Daytona!

Jed Copham behind the wheel of his BCRaceCars/TesarEngines/BIR Chevrolet Corvette during last summer's PleasureLand RV Show & Go.

Jed Copham behind the wheel of his BCRaceCars/TesarEngines/BIR Chevrolet Corvette during last summer’s PleasureLand RV Show & Go.

 

Get registered for BIR’s annual Racer Banquet on Feb. 24

Brainerd International Raceway’s annual Racer Banquet is set for Saturday, Feb. 24 at Cragun’s Resort in Brainerd.

The program starts with a social hour at 5:30 p.m., followed by dinner at 6:30 p.m. The awards ceremony follows dinner. The cost for the banquet  is $38 per person, $17 each for kids 8-12 years old, and $11 each for kids 4-7 years old. Please be aware that those who attend the banquet must pay for dinner as well.

The Racer Banquet is BIR’s chance to recognize the top drag racers during the 2017 season. Champions of BIR’s Bracket Drag Racing Series and Muscle Car Series will be honored, and individual awards will be given out as well. It’s a fun night for racers as well as their families and friends.

Make it a full weekend by staying both Friday and Saturday nights. BIR is receiving these special rates: $319.90 for two nights or $181.46 for a single night. Reserve your rooms by Jan. 20 for guaranteed rates and availability. But you cannot reserve rooms at Cragun’s until you’ve contacted BIR and registered for the banquet. So your first step is to call Rachel at BIR by phone at 218-824-7223. She will get you registered and then turn you over to Cragun’s to reserve your rooms. BIR’s offices are open from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Thursday (starting the week of Oct 30).

Make a weekend out of it and enjoy snowmobiling, ice fishing or any of a host of other fun things to do at Cragun’s and in the Brainerd Lakes Area.

Visit the Cragun’s Resort website for more details about what they offer and where they’re located. Or visit the Visit Brainerd website to learn more about what’s happening in the Brainerd Lakes Area that weekend.

Hope to see you there!

Here’s to the best race crew in the business!

Thanks to Brainerd International Raceway’s race crew for another phenomenal year of racing! They’re an amazing collection of dedicated and passionate individuals who get giant kudos for the great work they do to ensure a safe, fun racing environment. Thanks for making BIR one of the best tracks in the Midwest and for making the racing experience enjoyable for drivers and their crews!

Your 2017 Racing Crew: Phil Abramson (resting comfortably on the ground). 1st row from left: Cory Buchanan, Cindy Fairchild, Bruce  Kerber, Steve Roberts, DeDe Roberts, Dick Reineck, Kristi Copham, Jed Copham, Paul Burkland, Trevor Lang, Joyce Cuturia. Back row: Steve Koch, Tracy Fairchild, Keith Harris, Jason Waste, Gary Potvin, Jeff Korol, Krissi Martin, Erica Pilarski, Matt Page, Dusty Ziemet.

Your 2017 Racing Crew: Phil Abramson (resting comfortably on the ground). 1st row from left: Cory Buchanan, Cindy Fairchild, Bruce Kerber, Steve Roberts, DeDe Roberts, Dick Reineck, Kristi Copham, Jed Copham, Paul Burkland, Trevor Lang, Joyce Cuturia. Back row: Steve Koch, Tracy Fairchild, Keith Harris, Jason Waste, Gary Potvin, Jeff Korol, Krissi Martin, Erica Pilarski, Matt Page, Dusty Ziemet.

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Season ends with pair of World Racing League enduro races

The World Racing League was on BIR’s Competition Road Course last weekend for a pair of endurance races, an eight-hour race on Saturday and a seven-hour race in the rain on Sunday. The objective is pretty simple: Complete more laps than anyone else. Below are results from each day. Photos below are from Jerry Winker, ComicOzzie Autosport Photography.

SATURDAY’S RESULTS – click on graphic below

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SUNDAY’S RESULTS – click on graphic below

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Goblins and more at BIR for the finale

There was a little of everything during the final weekend of racing. A wedding proposal, a Halloween costume party, treasure hunts, games and some great racing action. Here are some photos from the weekend. Have a fabulous winter and we’ll see you at the track next year for the 50th Anniversary!

His & Her Wallys

His & Her Wallys

There might be a BIR owner or 2 here.

There might be a BIR owner or 2 here.

 

 

 

Scary. Very scary.

Scary. Very scary.

Looking good.

Looking good.

 

 

 

The kids were in the Halloween spirit...

The kids were in the Halloween spirit…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

...as were the adults.

…as were the adults.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Proposal.

The Proposal.

She must've said yes.

She must’ve said yes.

 

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