A huge crowd filled the stands and surrounded the edge of the track. The sound engines revving and tires smoking filled the air. The excitement was electric at Beech Bend Raceway, but it this year it wasn’t all about the drag strip. In 2019 the final race on the NMRA calendar expanded into a wonderland for Ford fans thanks to the addition a wide variety of new events and activities brought about with the addition of the Holley Intergalactic Ford Festival.
Yes, the 21st Annual Nitto Tire NMRA All-Ford World Finals Featuring the Holley Intergalactic Ford Festival took a huge event and made it massive. The performance parts giant wanted to expand its event offerings with one for Blue Oval fans, as the company is pushing even harder in the Ford market.
“We wanted to show Ford owners that we love Fords like they do and we’ve learned that there’s no better way than to throw a party for them. We are also launching more new Ford parts like the Hi-Ram intake, Terminator X EFI system, exhaust kits, etc., so the timing is perfect,” Bill Tichenor, Director of Marketing at Holley Performance Products, said.
As you may know, Holley is based in Bowling Green, Kentucky, where the World Finals takes place, so it was only natural for the company to partner with NMRA to create a must-attend event for any Ford fanatic.
“We wanted the event to be in our hometown, so partnering with the NMRA was a natural fit as they already had a great event that Ford guys know about,” Tichenor explained. “When we put on an event the most important thing is to treat people right. We have worked with the NMRA crew for 20-plus years and knew the NMRA team treats people like we want them to be treated so that would also work out perfectly as well.”
Similar to the successful formula of its LS Fest events in Bowling Green and on the West Coast, the Intergalactic Ford Festival brought even more excitement to the Beech Bend Raceway oval track with the addition of 3S Challenge, Autocross, Grand Champion, Dyno Challenge, and Burnout Contest competitions. Between the competitions, amateur and professional drifters, including Vaughn Gittin Jr. and Chelsea Denofa, performed tire-frying exhibitions.
“If I could have dreamed what it would be like, it would be what went down. We couldn’t be happier with first year. Excitement was in the air and people had a blast,” Tichenor enthused. “That will catch on and they will bring more of their friends next year. I am not sure what Ford fans can expect next year at this point, but you can bet there’s a good chance we add something fun and continue to tweak it so it is a great experience for everyone!“
Everywhere you looked in 2019 there were awesome high-performance Fords on display and in action, which took the excitement of the NMRA series finale to a new level, and the good news is it will return next year, so start your planning now because you don’t want to miss it. Until then, let’s relieve the excitement of the inaugural event.
As fun as this year’s event was, the better news is that the Holley Intergalactic Ford Festival will return next year in conjunction with the 22nd Annual Nitto Tire NMRA All-Ford World Finals.