Drag Illustrated Issue 179, November / December 2022 - Page 40

Dirt

World Series of Pro Mod Returns

Invite-only , $ 100,000-to-win shootout set for March 3-5 , 2023 at Bradenton Motorsports Park By Nate Van Wagnen

Drag Illustrated announced on Wednesday , Nov . 2 the return of its popular World Series of Pro Mod ( WSOPM ), an invitation-only , $ 100,000-to-win event celebrating the Pro Modified division . New for 2023 , the race will take place March 3-5 at Bradenton Motorsports Park in Bradenton , Florida , with an outlaw eighth-mile format . Forty drivers will be invited , and 32 drivers will qualify for the main field .

“ Pro Mod is the universal language of drag racing ,” said Wes Buck , founder and editorial director , Drag Illustrated . “ This is the largest inventory of pro-level , heads-up race cars on the planet . This is a brand of drag racing that has a unique cult following and , in my opinion , is home to many of our sport ’ s biggest personalities and most competitive racers . It ’ s a style of drag racing that has grown by way of regional series all across the country and around the world that are healthy and thriving . It ’ s our goal with the World Series of Pro Mod to bring racers from all those various sanctions and series and let them race for the largest purse in Pro Modified history , on the grandest stage and under the brightest lights possible .”
Bradenton Motorsports Park has played host to high-level Pro Modified races for years , but the track ’ s owner since 2018 , Victor Alvarez , has taken that to a new level . The 50th annual Snowbird Outlaw Nationals in December 2021 paid $ 50,000 to the Pro Mod winner , and this year ’ s Snowbirds Pro Mod winner will walk away with $ 51,000 . Bringing the WSOPM to Bradenton
is further proof of Alvarez ’ s commitment to Pro Mod racing at the Florida Gulf Coast track .
“ The dream since the beginning has been to have three big-time , destination races for Pro Mod at Bradenton every year ,” Alvarez said . “ This is a dream come true and a perfect fit . The Snowbirds is great and the U . S . Street Nationals is great . I ’ ve always felt like there was opportunity to do something really cool in March , but I wanted it to be the right fit . Wes and I share this vision of making drag racing as a whole the best it can be , but we are very passionate about Pro Mod in particular . We ’ ve been talking about this race for probably a year now , and it just makes sense . This is just something that we have to do .”
“ We couldn ’ t be more excited to bring the WSOPM to Bradenton ,” Buck added . “ This is an incredible part of the country that provides the conditions we ’ re after for a true destination event . With the incredible number of improvements and overall investment made by Victor Alvarez , it ’ s a perfect home for us . We are looking for long-term partners and opportunities to grow . We feel BMP ticks all those boxes . Vic is a man who shares our passion and enthusiasm for drag racing . He ’ s a risk taker , and I believe personally that there ’ s no end to the magic we can make together .”
Continuing with the tradition established at the three WSOPMs in the past , the winner of the 2023 WSOPM will walk away with $ 100,000 . It ’ s the largest purse in Pro Modified history and one of the largest single-event purses in drag racing . Buck and Alvarez both feel strongly that the $ 100,000 prize is a critical component of the event .
“ These racers deserve to run for big money ,” Buck said . “ They deserve to have this moment , a real circle-the-dates-on-yourcalendar event that people talk about all year long . In order to achieve that , the number has to be big . I understand it can ’ t happen every weekend . But those zeroes directly impact the fan interest , the participation , the enthusiasm , the electricity , the atmosphere . Almost every aspect of this race is impacted by the number of zeroes
PHOTOGRAPHS BY CHRIS SEARS
40 | Drag Illustrated | DragIllustrated . com Issue 179