Pep Boys, a national leading automotive service network and official Auto Service Partner Of NHRA, sponsored the NHRA All-Star Callout at the Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals from March 10-13 at Gainesville Raceway. The three-day event served up fun, action, and excitement to automotive fans of all ages.
The event kicked off Friday with Pep Boys CEO Brian Kaner, presenting at the NHRA Youth and Education Services (YES) Program. The program, which brings in students from technical schools and connect them with leaders across the automotive space, is a prime example of Pep Boys’ commitment to help close the nation’s skills gap in the industry through community education, partnerships and technology training.
The racing action revved up on Friday with a live ‘Callout.’ Before the eight drivers headed to the starting line, Kaner and Zach Balthrop, Senior Vice President, Sales and Customer Experience welcomed fans to the event and showcased the monetary grand prize. The crowd’s excitement amplified as driver Mike Salinas unveiled his 11-000 horsepower vehicle complete with custom Pep Boys branding.
No 1. seed and reigning four-time world champion Steve Torrence kicked off the Callout, getting his first-choice opponent. The matchups were as follows:
- Steve Torrence (winner) called out Leah Pruett
- Brittany Force (winner) called out Antron Brown
- Mike Salinas (winner) called out Shawn Langdon
- Justin Ashley (winner) called out Doug Kalitta
The show down did not disappoint as Brittany Force had a record-breaking time of 3.68 seconds at 337.75 mph – the third fastest speed in NHRA history! The Pep Boys’ ride also wowed fans as it reached speeds of 332.10 mph! The notable race secured Salinas his spot in the final four of the All-Star Callout.
Other event highlights included autograph signings with the eight All-Star drivers and the Pep Boys’ activation area where fans could enjoy free swag and get in on the action with live tire-changing competitions. Well received by fans, the midway activation was one for the ages!
The next event in the sponsorship series will include the Top Fuel All Star Callout Finals as well as the Funny Car All-Star Callout at the prestigious Dodge Power Brokers NHRA U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park on August 31- September 5.