Street Outlaws Take Center Stage at PRI 2022

The 2022 Performance Racing Industry show had a variety of new features this year — a Content Creator stage, an amped up electric race vehicle showcase, badge additions that announced membership status, just to name a few. But one new addition signaled a fairly important shift in the larger culture of race and performance — the Street Outlaws stage.

Stars — human and vehicular — of the wildly popular franchise have been part of the PRI show for years, drawing crowds of spectators and autograph seekers.  But those have mostly been extra attractions designed to draw visitors to various booths. And while that was certainly true this year (Pro Charger had a whole line up of stars, kicking off with AZN and Farm Truck), the Street Outlaws stage took the “street race” ethos from sideshow draw to legitimatized aspect of the industry which has been focused largely on sanctioned, track-based racing, whether that’s dirt, road or drag strip.

Featuring an ever expanding cast of characters, multiple locations and a No Prep Kings spinoff, Street Outlaws is all about the OG drag race — street racing, albeit in a “controlled” environment.  And the influence on the race and performance community is obvious as the builds, and competitions grow ever more fierce.  The influence of the show, which airs on Discovery and has fourteen seasons under its belt, can be seen in the rising popularity of the outlaw, no prep racing-style series that have been growing, and, it can be argued, the parallel growing interest in pro mod, which isn’t so much “run what you brung” but which features looser rules for engine/vehicle combos and allows for superchargers.

So, in real time, what did a Street Outlaws stage mean for PRI?  Well, it was the expected amount of behind the scenes discussions, vehicle reveals, and meet and greets with stars not to mention on air scheduling announcements. In fact, the No Prep Kings (NPK) schedule was announced at the show on Friday. But the stage also allowed for some fun interplay between fans and the race community — a “Race Tree Reaction Time Competition” let fans test their time out of the gate, and a scavenger hunt encouraged and interactive survey of the show to gather info and return for the NPK announcement. Question and Answer sessions, happy hours, and finally, a big and breaking announcement of a new Street Outlaws series that will be heading to Australia in 2023 proved that the franchise values the connection with the official racing community.

A wrap-up discussion with PRI president Dr. Jamie Meyer and Street Outlaws Executive Producer Sam Korkis addressed head-on how the show is influencing, shaping and changing the drag racing world, with the character driven stories, high performance vehicles, and now, presence at the leading race and performance industry event in the United States.

It remains to be seen how these changes will influence the rest of the industry, particularly as the EPA continues to push back against certain types of tuners and conversions.  Street Outlaws, in theory, will encourage fans to take their rides to the track, but in order to perform at the level that the stars, time, money, expertise and experience are required.  While the initial worries that first accompanied the show of glorifying street racing seem to have faded a bit, it’s still true that the safest place to drag race is at the track.   The public is savvy enough these days to know the difference between scripted “reality” and non-scripted, but still, putting the racing, the personas and the “stories” on par with sanctioned racing is an interesting, and bold move, from the Performance Racing Industry.

About Andreanna Ditton 311 Articles
Andreanna Ditton is the Editorial Director and Editor-in-Chief for the Internet Brands Automotive Classifieds Group, of which RacingJunk is the flagship site. She has worked in the automotive publishing industry since 2007, focusing on racing and performance issues.

2 Comments on Street Outlaws Take Center Stage at PRI 2022

  1. every man that loves hot rods and racing DOES NOT GIVE A SHIT ABOUT ANYONE TALKING ABOUT A PILE OF SHIT ELECTRIC CAR YOU PEOPLE AT PRI SHOULD TAKE A LOOK AROUND AND PAUSE FOR A SECOND BECAUSE THE FACTS ARE WHAT THEY ARE STOP TALKING ABOUT ELECTRIC THERE’S NOTHING COOL ABOUT THOSE SHIT BOXES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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