After taking in the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals last weekend in Norwalk, Ohio, it now looks like we were lucky enough to see the last full length quarter mile race for Top Fuel and Funny Cars, for the indefinite future. In the aftermath of the death of Funny Car driver Scott Kalitta, the NHRA has been looking for ways to make the races safer for the top two classes and as a temporary measure they have shortened the race length to 1000 feet which gives them an extra 320 feet of shutdown area.
Although there may be better ways to handle this, it was felt this change could be put into place almost immediately while other long term plans were finalized.
It's going to take quite a mental adjustment to see races end at 1000 feet but it's no secret that when you have cars with something like 7000 horsepower running at 300 mph, things can get a bit dicey if anything goes wrong. Let's hope they come up with some long term solutions that can return these classes to the full quarter mile soon.