NHRA Reveals 22-Race Camping World Season for 2022

Click Here to Begin Slideshow Every year NHRA polls the media to decide which rookie outshone all the others. Last year’s NHRA Rookie of the Year was Justin Ashley, the Top Fuel driver who scored victory during his first season of dragster competition. Most years rookies are content to make it to the semifinals or even make a finals appearance or two. Victories are usually “pie in the sky.” It’s going to be far more difficult to choose a stand-out newcomer in 2021. There are so many new competitors in the Camping World Drag Racing Series that have made their marks in only their first year of professional competition that the choice will definitely be tough to make. Each of this year’s 11 candidates has to participate in a minimum of five events to be eligible; a few haven’t notched five entries going into the final two races. NHRA announced an outstanding class for 2021’s Camping World Rookie of the Year, encompassing three of its four classes: Top Fuel, Funny Car and Pro Stock.The candidates are over-achievers who have succeeded, in many cases impressively during this 20-race campaign. In Top Fuel, the candidates are Artie Allen, Krista Baldwin, Josh Hart, Buddy Hull and Joe Morrison. Chad Green and Bobby Bode are the Funny Car contestants, while Dallas Glenn, Mike Callahan, Marty Robertson and Rob Tucker make up the Pro Stock contingent. Of this group there are two performance standouts, who have each won two races (with only two remaining, next week at Las Vegas and the finale in Pomona) in their rookie seasons. Josh Hart started the season at the Amalie Motor Oil Gatornationals (his local race in Gainesville, FL) with victory in his first Top Fuel start and followed that up later in the year, with a win at zMax Dragway outside Charlotte, NC during the Carolina Nationals, part of the Countdown to the Championship playoffs. Hart has competed in 11 of the 18 events held to date and has recorded four semifinal results. Hart is currently 11th in the Top Fuel standings and has a record of 17-9 in round appearances. Dallas Glenn had to wait until his fourth Pro Stock start, during the Four-Wide Nationals at zMax Dragway, before hoisting his first Wally winner’s trophy in that category. Glenn, who’s been a mechanic with KB Racing since 2012, accepted his opportunity to drive this year and has earned one No. 1 qualifier in addition to his two victories in 15 races; he has gone to four final rounds and currently sits third in the points standings, having qualified for every race he’s entered. Top Fuel boasts the larger number of Rookie contestants, five in all, which is usually more than the entire RoTY class most years. In addition to Hart, Artie Allen has entered five races and qualified for all of them. He’s lost in the first round on every occasion; his highest qualifying position is tenth. Krista Baldwin is driving her grandfather’s dragster, now that Chris Karamesines - The Greek - has hung up his competition gloves and boots.  Coming from Top Alcohol Dragster, Baldwin has entered five races and qualified for four of them, recording a single round win. Her highest qualifying position is 14th and she’s 17th in the points standings. Buddy Hull has parked his rig at 10 races thus far in the season and has qualified for seven Sunday eliminations. Unfortunately, he’s lost in the first round each time out, but has one top-half qualifying position of eighth, giving him 13th place in points. Joe Morrison’s entered nine races and qualified for all of them; qualifying is one thing and making it past the first round is another, something Morrison has failed to do thus far. In Funny Car, Chad Green has competed in six events in 2021 with his Ford Mustang, qualifying for four of them. Green also competes in his Pro Mod car, where he’s recorded a single win in three final rounds. He tends to race weekends where he can double-up, driving both the Funny Car and his Pro Mod Mustang. Second-generation driver Bobby Bode III, currently 14th in the season standings, has qualified for all seven races he’s attended, driving his family’s Toyota Camry. Bode has picked up a single round win and has notched a P3 qualifying slot in his seven races. In addition to Glenn, Pro Stock has three racers who have - or could in these last two events of the 2021 season - qualify for Rookie of the Year. Mike Callahan is driving a Dodge Dart similar to that run by Alan Prusiensky and prepped by his crew. He’s attended four races but has failed to qualify this far. Marty Robertson has entered three races in an Elite-prepped Chevrolet Camaro, qualifying for two of them yet failed thus far to get past the first round. Rob Tucker is far from his native Australia, where he’s a former Pro Stock champ. He’s entered five races in a Chevy Camaro and qualified for one of them, not making it out of the first round. What constitutes a Rookie of the Year? It’s not always ultimate results, but in this year’s competition for the honor, NHRA has two rookie racers who have hoisted Wally winner’s trophies. It would be tough to bet against them. Click Here to Begin Slideshow

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NHRA’s Camping World Drag Racing Series 2022 season will look a bit more “normal” with 22 national events. The schedule features the return of the Arizona NHRA Nationals at the close of February, the Virginia NHRA Nationals in Richmond and the Flav-R-Pac NHRA Northwest Nationals in Seattle, the latter serving as the traditional conclusion of NHRA’s annual Western Swing.

There will be two specialty events on the calendar in 2002 for the two nitro categories, Top Fuel and Funny Car. NHRA Allstar Shootout events will be held during the third race of the year, the Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals at Gainesville and at the prestigious Dodge//SRT NHRA U.S. Nationals outside Indianapolis over the Labor Day weekend. Details will be revealed as the two events draw closer.

The 2022 Camping World season kicks off in Pomona, heads next to Phoenix, with Top Fuel, Funny Car and Pro Stock categories, before heading to Gainesville, when Pro Stock Motorcycle joins the fray. Then it’s on to the four-wide Las Vegas event, then the final Houston race before that track goes away, followed by the four-wide contest at Charlotte, being held the final weekend of April, start of May.

In mid-May, the series makes its return to Richmond, before taking a break for Memorial Day. The drag racing stars reconvene in Epping, NH the first weekend of June, head to Bristol, TN two weeks later, and then on to Norwalk, Ohio. July 15-17 starts the Western Swing at Denver, followed on succeeding weeks by Sonoma and Seattle, before heading to Topeka in mid-August, Brainerd and ending the regular season at the U.S. Nationals over Labor Day weekend.

The 2022 Countdown to the Championship is comprised of six races next year (there are seven in 2021): Reading, Charlotte, St. Louis, Dallas, Las Vegas and Pomona.

NHRA Camping World Series Regular Season

Feb. 17-20 – Lucas Oil NHRA Winternationals presented by ProtectTheHarvest.com, Pomona, Calif.
Feb. 25-27 – NHRA Arizona Nationals, Phoenix
March 10-13 – *AMALIE Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals, Gainesville, Fla.
April 1-3 – NHRA Four-Wide Nationals, Las Vegas
April 22-24 – Mopar Express Lane NHRA SpringNationals presented by Pennzoil, Houston
April 29 – May 1 – NGK NTK NHRA Four-Wide Nationals, Charlotte, N.C.
May 13-15 – Virginia NHRA Nationals, Richmond, Va.
June 3-5 – NHRA New England Nationals, Epping, N.H.
June 17-19 – NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals, Bristol, Tenn.
June 23-26 – Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals, Norwalk, Ohio
July 15-17 – Dodge//SRT Mile-High NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil, Denver
July 22-24 – NHRA Sonoma Nationals, Sonoma, Calif.
July 29-31 – Flav-R-Pac NHRA Northwest Nationals, Seattle
Aug. 12-14– Menards NHRA Nationals presented by PetArmor, Topeka, Kan.
Aug. 18-21 – Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals, Brainerd, Minn.
Aug. 31-Sept. 5 – *Dodge//SRT NHRA U.S. Nationals, Indianapolis

NHRA Camping World Countdown to the Championship
Sept. 15-18 – Mopar Express Lane NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil, Reading, Pa.
Sept. 23-25 – NHRA Carolina Nationals, Charlotte, N.C.
Sept. 30-Oct. 2 – NHRA Midwest Nationals, St. Louis
Oct. 13-16 – Texas NHRA FallNationals, Dallas
Oct. 27-30 – Dodge//SRT NHRA Nationals presented by Pennzoil, Las Vegas
Nov. 10-13 – Auto Club NHRA Finals, Pomona, Calif.

*NHRA Allstar Shootout

About Anne Proffit 746 Articles
Anne Proffit traces her love of racing - in particular drag racing - to her childhood days in Philadelphia, where Atco Dragway, Englishtown and Maple Grove Raceway were destinations just made for her. As a diversion, she was the first editor of IMSA’s Arrow newsletter, and now writes about and photographs sports cars, Indy cars, Formula 1, MotoGP, NASCAR, Formula Drift, Red Bull Global Rallycross - in addition to her first love of NHRA drag racing. A specialty is a particular admiration for the people that build and tune drag racing engines.

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