CARQUEST Auto Parts, a Raleigh, N.C.-based company specializing in quality auto parts and equipment with stores throughout North America, has signed a multi-year agreement starting in 2005 to become the title sponsor of the spring NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series event at Route 66 Raceway in Joliet, Ill., it was announced today by National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) officials. The CARQUEST Auto Parts Route 66 NHRA Nationals will be held Jun 9-12 at the state-of-the-art quarter-mile facility located just south of Chicago in Joliet, Ill. The $1.8 million race, which will be televised by the ESPN family of networks, is the 10th of 23 events in the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series for 2005. CARQUEST had previously sponsored the fall event at the same track. "We are extremely happy to be able to put our CARQUEST name on such a great event held at one of the premier facilities on the NHRA POWERade circuit," said Scott Ginsburg, CARQUEST Director of Advertising. "CARQUEST, NHRA and Route 66 Raceway always make a great combination when it comes to successful racing events." It is the first of two NHRA event sponsorships for CARQUEST Auto Parts, who also headline the CARQUEST Auto Parts Nationals at Pacific Raceways in Seattle, July 22-24. "CARQUEST has become a great partner to the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series," said John Covarrubias, NHRA vice president of sales and business development. "We strive to create long-term relationships with a company so dedicated to drag racing." Matthew Alexander, vice president and general manager of Route 66 Raceway, said he's looking forward to a continued relationship with CARQUEST. "We are very fortunate to have a partner like CARQUEST to support and share the commitment and excitement of the sport of drag racing," Alexander said. "With their continued support, we are able to provide the fans with world-class drag racing at Route 66 Raceway." CARQUEST, committed to providing auto parts and services of the highest quality and greatest value to its customers, began in 1974 with 100 auto parts stores. Today there are more than 3,600 CARQUEST Auto Parts Stores serving North America. CARQUEST supplies the professional automotive service repair industry with replacement parts, tools and equipment. CARQUEST auto parts also are available to motorists who choose to do their own repairs although due to the advanced technology in today's automotive vehicles, it is CARQUEST's recommendation that repairs be done by professional automotive service technicians. Any CARQUEST Auto Parts Store will be happy to recommend qualified repair centers. For the location of the nearest CARQUEST Auto Parts Stores nearest you, call (800) 492-PART, or use the online store locator at Dubbed the first true "Stadium of Drag Racing," Route 66 Raceway provides top-notch entertainment for all types of racing fans. Route 66 Raceway is a multimillion-dollar complex including a 1/4-mile, stadium-style drag strip with 27 luxury suites and a 1/2-mile dirt oval track. The multipurpose facility hosts a wide variety of entertaining events, including two NHRA POWERade Drag Racing National events featuring Top Fuel, Funny Cars, Pro Stocks and motorcycle racing. Route 66 Raceway also features USAC Sprint and Midgets, demolition derby's, monster truck shows, Jr. Dragsters, car shows, bracket racing, music venues, an NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing event, and much more. Route 66 Raceway is located 30 miles southwest of downtown Chicago on Old Historic Route 66 in Joliet, Illinois, three miles south of I-80 on Route 53. Headquartered in Glendora, Calif., the NHRA is the primary sanctioning body for the sport of drag racing in the United States. It presents 23 national events through its NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series. The NHRA has 80,000 members and 140 member tracks. The NHRA-sanctioned sportsman and bracket racing series' provide competition opportunities for drivers of all levels. The NHRA develops the stars of tomorrow by offering the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series, NHRA Summit Racing Series, NHRA Summit Sport Compact Drag Racing Series and the NHRA Street Legal Program. The NHRA also offers the NHRA O'Reilly Auto Parts Jr. Drag Racing League for youths ages 8 to 17. ##
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