Route 66 Raceway Announces Even More Awesomeness at the JEGS Route 66 NHRA Nationals

Jet Dragsters, Family Fun Activities, New Joyride Transportation, Driver Appearances, 20th Anniversary Celebration and More!


Joliet, Ill. – May 22, 2018 – The NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series returns to Route 66 Raceway as part of the iconic drag strip’s 20th anniversary celebration. On May 31 – June 3, the stars of today and the legends of yesterday will gather for four explosive days and nights of racing in the JEGS Route 66 NHRA Nationals as the world’s top drag racers rocket to speeds exceeding 330 miles per hour in under four seconds.

The event is sure to surprise and delight fans new to the NHRA as well as those who have attended since the event’s inception at Route 66 Raceway in 1998. Some of the weekend highlights include:

Jet Car Finale on Friday
Two jet dragsters will present a spectacle on the quarter-mile as they rocket to speeds approaching 300 mph. The dragsters include: ProJet Motorsports’ “Hot Blade” piloted by Al Zukauskas (Al Z) and Team Heat’s “Fifty Caliber” driven by Scott Holdridge. Hot Blade features a Pratt & Whitney J60/JT12 engine used in Navy T-2 Buckeye fighter jets. This engine produces 6,000 horsepower with 4,500 pounds of thrust at approximately 19,000 revolutions per minute (RPM). The dragster hits over 100 mphduring the first 60 feet and under one second.

New this year, Route 66 Raceway will offer complimentary race-day transportation provided by Joyride. Joyride delivers “A joyful fan experience” as they assist in transporting fans to and from campgrounds and parking lots. Walking long distances in the hot sun or rain is no longer an issue when Joyride is on site!

To obtain a ride, fans can call 833-654-RIDE or simply flag down a driver. It is recommended to flag or hail down a driver for the fastest service, which will be available Friday - Sunday of race week for no cost.

Family Fun Activities
Earlier in the year, Route 66 Raceway announced that NHRA Top Fuel Driver Antron Brown would serve as the official Route 66 Raceway Kids Club Crew Chief in 2018. Antron will spend some time exclusively with Kids Club members during the JEGS Route 66 NHRA Nationals at the Kids Club display. Be sure to sign up on-site or online at so you are the first to find out additional information.

Additional Driver Appearances
Erica Enders will make a special appearance at Hollywood Casino on Thursday, May 31, where she will sign autographs and interact with fans. The opportunity to meet the first female Pro Stock Champion is open to all fans of all ages.

A horse of a different color, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver Noah Gragson will cross sports on Saturday, June 2 to experience the thrill and horsepower presented by the NHRA. Gragson will partake in Baptism by Nitro and make appearances at various displays within the midway. From 1:30 – 2:00 p.m., he will sign autographs at the Toyota display, before making his way to the Chicagoland Speedway footprint between 3:15 and 3:45 p.m. At that time, fans can enter for a chance to win a VIP NASCAR Camping World Truck Series package for the Overton’s 225.

20th Anniversary Celebration Display
With the marking of its 20th anniversary, Route 66 Raceway will offer an unprecedented level of content surrounding this milestone celebration including appearances by drag racing legends “Big Daddy” Don Garlits, Illinois-natives Gary Dyer and Ron Colson, and pioneer Funny Car driver Larry Reyes.

An expanded red carpet area will also grace the midway featuring the iconic Little Red Wagon, the winner of the 1970 Winternationals, “The Hawaiian,” a dual-engine top fuel dragster and a 50th anniversary replica Chi-Town Hustler. The tribute of legends and vehicles will encourage fans to reflect on the special moments that paved the way for Route 66 Raceway to flourish as it has and celebrate 20 years of its own unique memories.

In addition, premiere motorsports artist Kenny Youngblood will be on-site at the Route 66 Raceway display throughout the weekend personalizing unique prints for fans to commemorate the track’s 20th anniversary as well as some of the notable vehicles featured on the red carpet. Fans can obtain a unique print from Youngblood during the following dates and times:

Saturday, June 2
12:00 - 2:00 p.m.
4:00 - 6:00 p.m.

Sunday, June 3
9:00 - 11:00 a.m.
1:00 - 3:00 p.m.

Following the festivities on All-Star Saturday, The Blooze Brothers, a Blues Brothers tribute band, will perform on the north side of the grandstands. All fans are welcome to attend, grab a drink and enjoy the familiar tunes of Sweet Home Chicago, Everybody Needs Somebody and Jailhouse Rock.

Also, fans will not want to miss out on Championship Sunday as they can hear from drag racing legends at the Route 66 Raceway 20th anniversary display at 9:00 a.m., walk the track at 9:30 and witness the Wally presentation to the Champions that afternoon.

To purchase tickets to the NHRA Route 66 Nationals, or any of the other 2018 Route 66 Raceway events, visit us online at, call 888-629-RACE, download the Route 66  Raceway mobile app,  visit the Route 66 Raceway Administrative office or stop by the box office on the day of the event.

A brief 2018 schedule at Route 66 Raceway is as follows:

May 31-June 3      Route 66 NHRA Nationals
July 14      Four Seasons Heating, Air Conditioning and Plumbing Burndown at Sundown
July 26-29      13th Annual NMRA/NMCA Super Bowl of Street-Legal Drag Racing
August 18      D’Arcy Buick GMC Route 66 Classic

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Chicagoland Speedway & Route 66 Raceway
Chicagoland Speedway is a 1.5-mile, paved oval race track located in Joliet, Ill.  The track has hosted racing events of the major U.S. racing series, and currently conducts races in all three NASCAR national series, including the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, the NASCAR XFINITY Series, and the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.   Along with Route 66 Raceway, a multimillion-dollar complex that includes a ¼ mile stadium-style drag strip and a ½ mile dirt oval track, Chicagoland Speedway is wholly-owned by International Speedway Corporation (ISC), a major promoter of motorsports activities.  ISC owns and/or operates 13 of the nation’s major racing venues, including Daytona International Speedway. For more information on Chicagoland Speedway, visit

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500 Speedway Blvd
Joliet, IL 60433
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Route 66 Raceway
500 Speedway Blvd, Joliet, Illinois 60433 Tickets & Information Call 888.629.RACE (7223)

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