Magic 8 Shootouts At No Mercy 12
Location: South Georgia Motorsports Park, Valdosta, Georgia | Date: 10/15
SMALL EVENTS, BIG IMPACT
Written by: Rex Roy
On any given weekend, organized racing happens at hundreds of tracks around the country. Just like sports played outside of the NBA, MLB, NHL, and NFL, amateur racers and the businesses that support them know how to put on a great show, lay down some quick runs, and have a good time in the process. While it might not be IndyCar, IMSA, and NASCAR, the competition is no less real, and the drivers and teams are no less competitive. The difference is scale, but don’t be mistaken: these smaller events are still “majors” to the racers and fans who participate.
Proof positive happened on the PRI Road Tour’s recent stop at the South Georgia Motorsports Park. The big draw was Duck X Productions’ four-day event known as No Mercy 12. Move-in started on Sunday, October 12, with the first racers arriving Monday. Practice and qualifying started mid-week and the competition started in earnest on Thursday, October 14.
While the PRI Road Tour has visited many events across the country this year, PRI was a pivotal asset in this event as title sponsor of Friday’s Magic 8 Shootouts. The exciting competition pits the top eight racers in four classes against each other for a night of non-stop action under the lights.
“These Duck X events are legendary and it's great to have the opportunity to be involved as a sponsor,” said PRI ambassador and advocate Tom Deery.
PRI and Duck X Productions teamed up to support the event and also to reach racers who are being impacted by the EPA’s change of enforcement regarding the Clean Air Act. (Watch this video for an eye-opening account of what our government is doing to racers across the country). Deery noted, “We can have an impact here. This is our crowd; these are the people we need to reach on the RPM Act—Recognizing the Protection of Motorsports Act 2021. The RPM Act is a bipartisan effort to protect Americans’ rights to modify and convert vehicles that have an original VIN [vehicle identification number] to race-only vehicles.”
Part of what Deery communicated to racers is the fact that many drag racing vehicles that have been traditionally modified for racing would now be considered illegal builds by the EPA. The Agency also maintains that the equipment used to transform a street vehicle into a race car is also illegal to sell. This present reality is having a chilling effect on the people and businesses that sell racing parts and build racing cars.
Getting the word out about the RPM Act—which is supported by both PRI and SEMA—is crucial. The bipartisan bill is working its way through Congress, and clarifies federal law about transforming production cars into race cars.
“Passing the RPM Act into law is the only way to guarantee the future safety of the racing industry,” said Dr. Jamie Meyer, PRI President. “We need everyone at the Magic 8 Shootouts to join in the effort and ensure that drag racing events like No Mercy can continue. It’s critical that we unite to protect our racing rights.”
Even leaders in drag racing promotion, including Duck X Productions founder and promoter Donald “Duck” Long, are often unaware of the legal threats facing their businesses and customers. Long admitted that before PRI sponsored the Magic 8 event, he wasn't aware of PRI’s RPM Act initiative, which so far has garnered more than 1.5 million supportive letters to government leaders.
Long’s reaction to having PRI be the Magic 8 presenting sponsor? “They reached out to us, and I really haven't heard of PRI directly supporting racing events like this before. To me that’s probably the coolest, most important thing,” Long says. “We’re honestly really thrilled to have them here and I hope everyone supports the RPM program. And we are proud to join PRI in supporting the RPM Act.”
The Road Tour’s stop at No Mercy 12 also gave the team time to talk to racers, teams, concessionaires, and track vendors about the government’s response to COVID-19. Local and state bodies have sought to curtail tracks’ lawful operations, often taking action with little scientific support for the efficacy of their mandates. “Along with the worldwide motorsports industry, Duck X Production events are experiencing challenging times because of government overreach. While we’ve endured and survived through hurricanes and extreme temperatures, never have we had to contend with the government threats that we are experiencing today,” Long continued.
Beyond spreading the word about important advocacy measures, the Friday night event was jam-packed with racing action to help kick off No Mercy 12, which, in addition to the coverage from the PRI Road Tour team, also featured livestreams to reach fans far and wide.
Part of the action was the Pro 275, also known as a RvW class. For those not familiar, RvW is a Duck X creation known as “Radials vs. the World.” Radial-tired race cars—but no Pro Mods—run the eighth mile from a .400 pro tree. The action is super exciting with four-second ETs and traps around 150. Pro275s run M/T Pro 275 tires with a pretty open rule set that allows any suspension, no wheelie bars, OEM fiberglass bodies, and any trans.
A packed Pro 275 field was gunning for the $20,000 top prize, which eventually went to Manny Buginga driving his ‘03 Mustang.
As the race season begins to wrap, the PRI Road Tour 2021 still has a stop or two left to hit. And at each stop, to help support the RPM Act, PRI will push the organization’s new membership initiative. PRI knows there’s political and economic power in a huge quantifiable community—think big voting block—which is why PRI membership is so critical
Check out PRI’s new membership options for individuals and businesses here. Plan to attend the 2021 PRI Trade Show in Indianapolis on December 9–11 to catch up with the latest products and services. To register as an attendee for the 2021 PRI Trade Show, visit here.