Street Outlaws star Shearer to compete in the NHRA J&A Service Pro Mod Drag Racing Series class at the Big Go
INDIANAPOLIS – To say Justin “Big Chief” Shearer is excited to compete at the world’s biggest drag race would be a massive understatement. Shearer, the star of Discovery Channel’s reality television series Street Outlaws, will make his NHRA debut in style at this weekend’s 62nd annual Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis as part of NHRA J&A Service Pro Mod Drag Racing Series.
The prestigious race, which is the seventh 10 events in 2016 in the NHRA Pro Mod class, will air on FOX Sports 1 (FS1) and FOX Sports 2 (FS2), and marks the first time Shearer and his CrowMod Pontiac Firebird will race at an NHRA event. Competing against 33 other standout NHRA Pro Mod competitors in the most illustrious race in the sport is jumping right into the fire, but it’s safe to say that Shearer is thrilled for the opportunity.
“From 1-10, we’re on like a 12,” Shearer said. “We are out of control excited. Honestly, we’re just having a great time. We’re running on pure excitement because we get to go race at Indy.
“The best way I know to describe it would be if you’re a crazy of Major League Baseball fan your whole life and all of a sudden one day you’re allowed to pitch in a World Series. That’s where I’m at right now. I get to go to my World Series and see all the drivers and all the fans. To get to be here and be a part of it, we can’t even put it into words.”
Shearer appeared in an NHRA public service announcement earlier this summer encouraging hot rod enthusiasts to race at NHRA tracks, and not illegally on public streets. Shearer also hinted at competing in a NHRA professional class, a move that came to fruition in time for Indy.
The opportunity to compete in Pro Mod at the event known as the Big Go was too big to pass up, as evidenced by Shearer’s impressive enthusiasm for the race.
“The fanboy in me is going out of control and the racer in me is out of control,” Shearer said. “We’re just going hard and trying to make it happen. We’re in the pits dancing around like goofballs having a great time because no matter happens, we’re in the U.S. Nationals with my car, my truck, my trailer and it’s amazing. We can’t believe it.
“I’ve always liked Pro Mod and always been a big fan. To me, that was the ultimate, taking a door slammer and making it wild and crazy as you can. That’s the allure to me. These guys are an amazing group of people.”
The NHRA J&A Service Pro Mod Drag Racing Series portion of the race, which will be presented by JEGS, features a star-studded lineup, including points leader and two-time world champion Rickie Smith, Bill Glidden, two-time world champion Troy Coughlin, Bob Rahaim and Steve Matusek.
With an older engine and combination that may pale in comparison when it comes to power to some of the top competitors in the NHRA Pro Mod class at the prestigious Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, Shearer realizes he may be a considerable underdog during the weekend. But in a sport where anything can happen on a particular weekend, the Mustang, Okla. native is excited for the chance to compete on drag racing’s grandest stage.
“We’re going to go out and we’re going to take a swing at them,” Shearer said. “I feel like I have a decent car, but the horsepower, we’re a little behind on that. At the end of the day, we still have to race. That’s what makes drag racing so great. We have to go to the starting line to make it happen. We’re just a little behind on some horsepower and some other parts of the equation, but what if we do? That’s our slogan for the weekend: ‘What if we do?’ We’re living on that right now.”
That mindset has pushed Shearer and his team through a rigorous stretch to get the car ready to compete at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals. The hard work, though, will be worth it when Shearer pulls up to the starting line for the first time at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis.
“For me, just being able to be a part of it is something huge,” Shearer said. “Everywhere I go I talk to old drag racers and they’re like, ‘Hey man, I like your show, I like what you’re doing,’ and then they tell me stories about when they drag raced and the one story that always come back is the U.S. Nationals. I want those stories and I want to make those memories with my car, my team and my friends. This is our Woodstock and I can’t wait.”
Featuring the world’s fastest and most unique doorslammer race cars, the NHRA J&A Service Pro Mod Drag Racing Series offers something for every kind of hot-rodding enthusiast. The class is highlighted by historic muscle cars, like ’67 Mustangs, ’68 Firebirds and ’69 Camaros, as well as a variety of late model American muscle cars. With more than 3,000 horsepower, the suspended door pro mod cars travel the quarter-mile in less than six seconds at speeds exceeding 250 mph.
NHRA J&A Service Pro Mod Drag Racing Series qualifying begins Friday, September 2 with a qualifying session at 6:30 p.m., continuing with the two qualifying sessions on Saturday, September 3 at 2:00 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. The final qualifying session takes place Sunday, September 4 at 1:45 p.m. and round one of eliminations is later on Sunday at 5:30 p.m.
A 30 minute highlight show from the event will air on FS2 Thursday, Sept. 22, at 9:30 p.m. (ET).
Tickets for the world’s most prestigious drag race can be purchased by calling the NHRA Ticket Sales Center at (800) 884-NHRA (6472), or online at www.NHRA.com/tickets.
To see current Pro Mod points standings, click here.